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Review: Killing Commendatore

Killing Commendatore

Killing Commendatore
By Haruki Murakami
Knopf, 9780525520047, October 2018, 704pp.

The Short of It:

In my opinion, this is one of his most linear works and yet it possesses all of the key elements that Murakami fans have come to expect from his work.

The Rest of It:

I spent a lot of time reading this one. Not because it was long and dense, but because each and every sentence begged to be read again. Much of it was beautifully written, but some of it was puzzling which is why I love Murakami so much. He takes an idea and just goes with it.

In this story, an artist, recently separated from his wife, heads to a remote, hilltop home to do what he does best, paint. But in this house he finds a painting that basically, changes his life. The painting titled, Killing Commendatore, is a violent depiction of what is basically an assassination. An “idea” takes the shape of a very small man. There is a deep pit in the forest which will remind readers of The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. There’s a young girl, a faceless guy, a menacing man who drives a Subaru, an impressionable aunt, and a very mysterious man who lives in a white mansion across the way.

If you ever felt intimidated by Murakami in the past, this is the book for you.  I think there is a lot to relate to in this one. The overall theme of loneliness, isolation, what it means to be married and loved and generally, what can be found at the core of each human being and how that can shift depending on the circumstances.

I can see Murakami winning an award for this one. It seems to embody everything he’s ever written and yet remain so unique. I highly recommend it.

Source: Purchased
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

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It’s Here!

Killing Commendatore

After two long years waiting for the translation, Killing Commendatore is finally in my hands! Last night, as soon as I could, I drove to the closest bookstore and searched for a copy. At first, it was nowhere to be found. I got worried but then I spotted it. Three copies only!

I turned each page lovingly, to make sure the pages weren’t bent. I removed the book jacket to reveal the surprise cover underneath. All was intact and now it is happily in my hands. What you see below is what’s underneath the bright blue cover.

Killing Commendatore Cover Reveal

I’ve read a few pages already and within just nine pages Murakami managed to include a faceless man, cats, mysterious women friends and ear talk. Where is my bingo card?

Murakami Bingo Card

I am probably going to get this UK version too. The cover is so different from what we got here in the US. I think Chip Kidd only designed the US version though.

Killing Commendatore Alternate Cover

And under the UK cover:

Killing Commendatore UK Cover Reveal

Which do you prefer? The US cover on top? Or the UK cover on the bottom? Will you be picking up a copy?