- Paperback: 432 pages
- Publisher: Hodder And Stoughton; 2 edition (4 April 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0340747978
- ISBN-13: 978-0340747971
- Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 2.8 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,13,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Number9dream Paperback – 4 Apr 2002
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Even more dazzling than GHOSTWRITTEN.
A delirious mix of thriller, tragedy, fantasy, video games and a portrait of uneasy modern Japan . . . A deserving Booker nominee.
This Booker-shortlisted fantasia confirms the Hiroshima-based Mitchell as the most prodigally gifted of young British novelists ... an extraordinary literary cabaret of dreams, visions and pastiches, from video-game rides and gangster rumbles to suicide submariners.
Shortlisted for the Booker and the James Tait Black Memorial PrizesSee all Product description
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To begin with, it is unnerving for the reader (at least for me) to identify both with the young angst-ridden protagonist, as well as the cultural mores - the slang, food, landscape, the World War II and other societal connotations. Kindle was helpful in deciphering many terms.
Secondly, the narrative is multi-layered – oscillating between the present and past, dreams and reality, sometimes many times on a single page. Added to this disorienting pace of the story is a series of allegorical passages that seem to bear no relation to the yarn.
The title “#9dream” is that of a song written by John Lennon from the album “Walls and Bridges” by the Plastic Ono Band released in 1974. David Mitchell claimed that the book was a tribute to Lennon.
Alas, The ending leaves the reader dangling on some remote Japanese island, quite unfulfilled.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
This is clearly an early work of a writer destined to become a commanding voice of his generation. The roots of "Cloud Atlas" are evident to someone who has read the later book first. The literary games in the more recent book are delicious. I felt like I was on a zoom flume sliding and speeding through "Cloud Atlas". "Number9Dream" is a bumpier ride. It is an important book in the Mitchell cannon precisely because of its weaknesses. The seeds of greatness are clearly there. Even with the broken sidewalk feeling that occasionally occurs as one trips through the "plot", it is a worthwhile, intelligent and enjoyable read. I look forward to the latest novel, to be released next week. I can't imagine the book that surpasses "Jacob de Zoet", one of the most gripping books that I have ever read.
Read them all.
I enjoyed the use of repetition: waking up and not knowing where he was, dreams, letters. I also liked the interconnectedness of the characters, especially his work relations and friends. Even the Yakuza had some interesting ties.
To me, the novel is about search for meaning, which is as individual as the reviews of this book. In the end, Eiji finds it, though not where he expected.With that in mind, the ending suits.