Thursday, July 16, 2015

The Strange Library

The Strange Library
Haruki Murakami
3 / 5

Published 2014

First Sentence
"The library was even more hushed than usual."
Publisher's Description:
From internationally acclaimed author Haruki Murakami—a fantastical illustrated short novel about a boy imprisoned in a nightmarish library.

A lonely boy, a mysterious girl, and a tormented sheep man plot their escape from the nightmarish library of internationally acclaimed, best-selling Haruki Murakami's wild imagination.

Dear Reader, 

This is a charming little fairy tale of a book. I can't tell if it had a moral to the story (and I very much dislike that it made the protagonist never want to return to his library!), but it was cute and entertaining and very endearing. Pretty much what one might expect from Murakami. I was intrigued by the artwork on almost every facing page in the book - it appeared to illustrate the story, but in a sort of abstract way. A truly beautiful book, though (also entirely what I've come to expect from Chip Kidd). The setup itself is so interesting: the reader folds back vertical cover flaps to get to the story. I found it odd to hold and somewhat difficult to read that way, but the concept was great. 

The book is so short that I don't want to speak too much about it for fear of giving away the entire thing! But I encourage anyone to go read it - it'll take you no time at all. I'd suggest it as a bedtime story, but...I worry it might deter children from going to the library ever again! And that is NOT something I want. (I wonder if Murakami had a bad experience in his own local library, and this is his retribution...?)


The Strange Library

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