I’ve talked before about having too little time and too many authors to read and catch up with. That’s the reason, I rarely read more than one book by the same author. But for a writer like Murakami, there had to be an exception to the rule. For a writer as prolific as him, I must read more. Let’s just say, he’s my Amitav Ghosh of Japan. That, and the fact that when I last read something by him, almost everyone told me, that After Dark wasn’t the best way to introduce myself to Murakami. Ever since, I was in search for another Murakami novel that fit my budget and piqued my curiosity.
At Joylita‘s suggestion, I picked up Sputnik Sweetheart, and the experience was gratifying. I am one who loves complicated stories. When the narrative keeps me intrigued, yet confused, I am a happy reader. Sputnik was not one of those books. The story couldn’t possibly have been simpler to read. The narrative flowed easily, there was very little happening in the first ten chapters. However, although I was just reading the second book by him, I was fairly aware of Murakami’s unique style. There were a lot of interesting, profound conversations between two characters; there was a lot of talk about literature and music; there were insomniacs; there was a general feeling of being lost and trying to make sense of the world we live in. Sputnik‘s protagonist is Sumire, an aspiring writer whose best friend in the narrator, K. K is hopelessly in love with Sumire, and Sumire’s heart is set on her new boss Miu, a woman. More than the first half of Sputnik goes by with us getting to know the three characters better. And then somewhere around chapter twelve, things take a big turn. The sudden disappearance of Sumire on a Greek island brings K and Miu together, two people who have only heard about each other from Sumire. Again, there isn’t a lot happening in the final chapters, but that doesn’t mean that the book, at any point, gets boring or tedious. This is one quick read that will leave you wanting more. And although the end might leave the thirst of some not quenched, I found it apt and inevitable. But don’t trust me on that – I didn’t mind the end of Lost either!