- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: Vintage; Reprint edition (9 April 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 037571894X
- ISBN-13: 978-0375718946
- Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 1.8 x 20.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 13 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #3,48,030 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
A Wild Sheep Chase: A Novel (Vintage International) Paperback – 9 Apr 2002
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“Murakami is a mythmaker for the millennium, a wiseacre wiseman.” –New York Times Book Review
"A delight . . . equal parts screwball comedy, detective story, and heroic quest." –USA Today
“A witty adventure . . . a piece of verbal anarchy . . . a labyrinthine mystery from start to finish.” –San Francisco Chronicle
"Marvelously engaging, at turns witty, dry, wicked, even loopy. Reading A Wild Sheep Chase is like spending a splendidly foul weekend with the Four Raymonds–Chandler, Carver, Massey, and Queneau."–Frederick Barthelme
From the Inside Flap
A marvelous hybrid of mythology and mystery, A Wild Sheep Chase" is the extraordinary literary thriller that launched Haruki Murakami's international reputation.
It begins simply enough: A twenty-something advertising executive receives a postcard from a friend, and casually appropriates the image for an insurance company's advertisement. What he doesn't realize is that included in the pastoral scene is a mutant sheep with a star on its back, and in using this photo he has unwittingly captured the attention of a man in black who offers a menacing ultimatum: find the sheep or face dire consequences. Thus begins a surreal and elaborate quest that takes our hero from the urban haunts of Tokyo to the remote and snowy mountains of northern Japan, where he confronts not only the mythological sheep, but the confines of tradition and the demons deep within himself. Quirky and utterly captivating, A Wild Sheep Chase is Murakami at his astounding best.
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A young man, an advertising executive, uses one of his friend’s photographs (of sheep, of course) for a publication and suddenly finds himself wanted by a scary man in black who asks him to find the sheep, the mutant sheep in the picture, with the star on its back, or else. And the “else” is a matter of life and death. There is plenty of that, life and death, and snow, and a girlfriend with beautiful ears, and a man in a sheep costume, and a sheep professor, and sheep themselves. With glassy eyes, staring at the protagonist, tucked away in the mountains. There is also a lot of beer drinking and ruminating about life and the meaning of life and sheepishness and, you know, humanity. And, of course, the pastoral northern Japan and the strangest quest across it you have ever read. Guaranteed
As I said the third book of the Trilogy and story hasn't gone much ahead. Our hero is now married for four years, his wife walks out on him, he makes a new girl friend (the girl with the beautiful ears), they have moved ahead from their earlier business of translation to advertising, his friend the Rat is gone on a sabbatical location unknown. J has opened a new bar somewhere far. All hell breaks lose in this one (after 50% mark) is when he prints a unique sheep's picture sent by the Rat to him in an advertisement. A super rich man on death bed assigns him of the task to find the Sheep in picture or lose everything he had by not taking up the challenge. What he does next or where his journey takes him in search of the Sheep is the rest of the book but how it all ends is simply terrific (read typical Murakami) still he refuses to give you a closure of sorts as he always does with his books I believe. So many unanswered questions and so many cross connections that I could make out but not sure if they are really there or am I just confused. But there is a silver lining as I now have the fourth book which he wrote as an Epilogue. Guess another 400 pages to satisfy my questions, queries, confusions or the metaphors he has created in these ones so far. I hope that gives me the answers.
As always the case is with any of his books and stories, this too has superb book(s) and music references. It actually did put a wide smile on my face as the books, Authors and quite a few music references are something that I have read and listened too in the recent past and some that I haven't have gone to my "To Be Read" list as always. The western influence on Murakami's writing is pretty much evident I believe this one onward as I plan to go forward with his other works and is damn impressive. He surely knew right from the very start how to keep his audience hooked and to keep em happy at that. Have you read the "Rat" Trilogy? If you have, please tell me that I am going to get that closure by the end of the series, if not, I will say do think before picking this up :). If you like long prose with nowhere going story yet with so many stories thrown in between, do read this series or else stay away.
Also the product quality was of high standard and upto the mark.
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