Early 1Q84 / Murakami Roundup

Posted by @ 3:32 am on March 31st, 2011

At the Alfred A. Knopf blog, Chip Kidd discusses the process of designing the book jacket for the long-awaited American edition of Haruki Murakami’s 1Q84.

Murakami’s Random House site offers “The Murakami Mix” — partial selections from songs by Coltrane, Mozart, Pearl Jam, Frank Sinatra, and other artists whose work he wrote into Kafka on the Shore, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Norwegian Wood, and others of his books.

The fan site murakami.ch offers an archive of older interviews, book reviews, and articles, plus the usual sort of thing you can find at Wikipedia.

In this clip from Japanese television, Murakami gives a speech in English, in which he says: “Like many other novelists, I do the opposite of what I am told.”


1Q84 hits bookstores October 25. According to Carolyn Kellogg at Jacket Copy: “‘1Q84’ is said to be a pun on George Orwell’s ‘1984’ — the Japanese word for ‘Q,’ apparently, being a homonym for the number 9.” And early talk at The Millions about the book’s Japanese publication offers this:

“Where Orwell published a novel about the future, Murakami approaches the year from the opposite direction, creating an alternate past.” Apparently, that’s where the similarities end, however. The book follows the stories of two characters, one a writer and the other a young PE instructor who become involved with a mysterious cult. As the story unfolds, they create an alternate universe, “a mysterious past, different than the one we know,” which the author character refers to as 1Q84.