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Michelle Scott, urban fantasy author

I love urban fantasy and paranormal romance! Although I'm not too keen on books that are overly sexy, I don't mind a little heat if it goes along with the story. At the same time, I'll read pretty much anything from classic novels to contemporary fiction.

Currently reading

Shutter Island
Dennis Lehane
Tim Gunn: A Guide to Quality, Taste and Style (Tim Gunn's Guide to Style)
Tim Gunn, Kate Maloney
Oaths of Blood (Ascension #2)
S.M. Reine
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle - Jay Rubin, Haruki Murakami Reading a Murakami novel is like stepping into a lucid dream. The setting, characters, and events are realistic yet eerily off center. Anything can happen. Unlike Isabelle Allende or Gabriel García Márquez, Murakami doesn't write magical realism; rather, he's the very definition of Kafkaesque. Which is why I love his books so much. They transport me into another dimension, and even though they are very long (I believe Wind-Up Bird was around 900 pages), I find them gripping.

I'm not even going to try to summarize the plot. There are simply too many nuances. Instead, I will say that it was the characters - both good and evil - who made this such a compelling read. The main character himself (the narrator, that is) was vanilla in all regards. But because he was a passive person, at least at the start of the book, he made the more interesting characters stand out more.

Like I said, the book is very long, and at times, it did drag. Even so, there is something about Murakami's plain style that I find gripping. For some reason, even the simplest of actions (making tea, feeding a cat) take on great significance.

Although I greatly enjoyed the book, I gave it four stars because the ending didn't satisfy me the way that 1Q84 did. It wasn't that I felt disappointed so much as I wanted more of a bang. Even though Murakami's style is subtle and a super-charged ending would have been out of place, I still felt something was lacking. Too many unanswered questions remained. I felt that 1Q84 had a much more satisfying conclusion. Probably, if I'd read Wind-Up Bird first, I wouldn't have thought this, but overall, I didn't care for this book as much as 1Q84.

Still, this is an outstanding novel and definitely worth a read.