Haruki Marukami – 1Q84 Book 3

Wednesday 27th June

The third part of a trilogy, that isn’t really one at all; it is simply a very long book split up, so that people buy two books rather than one.    If that sounds confusing it is; Books 1 & 2 are in Book 1, while Book 3 is a stand-alone second book.  And all so unnecessary too, it could have been an excellent book as one volume, especially if the pages of repetition had been excised, or at least hacked back a bit.  One doesn’t mind a bit of repetition, if it re-enforces the message, or helps to delineate motives or character, but Haruki seems to have brought repetition to a new dimension altogether.  And the story was good in places, but dipped for such long periods where so little was happening that one could easily have given it up as a lost cause.  There were as usual some great ideas floating around in there, especially the relationship between Tengo and his father, though even here there was a distinct lack of resolution.  The end was so inevitable and un-climactic as to make one wonder if a whole section was missing.  I have loved every other book by Mr. Marukami, and I did enjoy most of Books one and two (in the one volume – remember), but really book 3, could have been cut in length by two and have been far more readable.  But then it couldn’t have been a stand-alone book, could it?   And the publishers would have had to put it all in the one volume and got a lot less books sold.  A pity, as with some astute editing it could have been excellent.  5 out of 10, I think.