Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami

Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami 1

A Wild Sheep Chase is a novel about a chain-smoking narrator who embarks on an adventure to find a mythical sheep with a star-shaped mark on its back. The protagonist, who remains unnamed throughout the book, is recently divorced and going through the motions of life until a strange man in a black suit, who represents “The Boss”, a major right-wing figure, makes him an offer he can’t refuse: find the sheep or his life will be destroyed.

The story takes place in Tokyo and Hokkaido in 1978 and is a mix of detective fiction, myth, fantasy, and philosophy. The novel explores themes of isolation, self-alienation, and the illusory nature of justice. The main character’s journey is more of an emotional one than a physical one, as he grapples with his own inner self and the forces that have shaped twentieth-century Japan.

What I Liked

I really don’t know – I’ve read every book that Murakami has written and I still can’t put my finger on why. There’s something – it’s a weird mix of setting, character, and something that draws me to read all of his books. Same with this one. It’s brilliant, but strange.

What I Did Not Like

Ok. Murakami is weird. Like really, really weird. I don’t think I can recommend any of his books to anyone. So, I don’t like that. But I also don’t think he can be any less weird without losing some of his books’ magic (they do a lot of magical realism anyway).

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