Saturday, April 22, 2017

A Colourless Man

Haruki Murakami is one of those authors in which everything they write feels like a dream. Or nightmare, depending on how you look at things in the world. In Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage, a young man discovers just how much his life affected others even when he thought he was"colourless" to do anything.

Meet Tsukuru Tazaki, a young Japanese man who thinks of Death. He lives a very normal and ordinary life with no passion because he feels he should die. In fact, the desire came from when, after moving to Tokyo from his hometown of Nagoya, his four friends from school cut him off for good. His friends were all named after colours except for him, and he felt as though they all lead colourful lives. He was simply, as he thought, the bland one. However, once he is cut from his friends, Tazaki undergoes a kind of Death and then Rebirth, changing him for the better. And it is during this transformation that, thanks to a woman he's seeing, he decides to go on a pilgrimage to learn the truth behind his exile. Murakami also weaves in stories within the main story - the one regarding a man named Midorikawa (green river) who stays in a hot springs resort was beautiful to read.

This entire book read like a dream, one that I hated to leave. Tazaki felt as though he was a soul aimlessly wandering around Japan (and Finland), yet that was far from the truth. As he learns during his pilgrimage, he was the one who was the most solid of the group. He was the one that everyone relied upon, even when they cast him away from the group. Due to a horrible accusation, the four knew that he would make it because he was just that strong - that colourful. And in learning that truth, Tazaki realizes that he can finally live and love in a world filled with colour, just for him.

Arigato gozaimasu!

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