maanantai 28. syyskuuta 2015
Haruki Murakami: The Strange Library
Haruki Murakami is a master storyteller and especially a master of short stories. Despite this, none of his short story collections have been translated into Finnish. Only novels. (The newest one, a translation of Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World entitled Maailmanloppu ja ihmemaa, will be published next month.)
The Strange Library is an individually published short story, or a novella, or a children's picture book, or an art book, or a collage or... I don't even know what it is. I think in this case pictures definitely speak louder than words. This is what the front cover of my edition looks like:
There's an ominous warning on the side: "For internal use only". The cover pages open like flaps:
The story is full of mysteries, symbols and allegories that went way beyond my understanding. :) But maybe nightmares like this are not meant to be understood on a rational level. The story was also surprisingly dark and depressing for Murakami, and certainly very dark for a children's book (as the book is categorised). But I liked the way the pictures complemented the tale and made it more visual and dreamlike.
So a word of warning: don't read this as your first Murakami or you may be too confused or depressed to read any of his other work. ;) But the book is still worth a read if only for the quirky twists and turns that the illustrations add to the story.
Haruki Murakami: The Strange Library. Knopf. 2014. 96 pages.
Originally published in Japanese as Fushigi na toshokan
Translated by Ted Goossen
Art direction and design by Chip Kidd
HarukiMurakami.com: The Strange Library
Wikipedia: Haruki Murakami