A pink taxi

A pink taxi

November 12, 2011

The Incipit of 1Q84

I didn't read about it in LeMonde! A friend was intellectually generous and offered me the hard copy print out of the NY Times article about Haruki Murakami. That after he had read his non fiction piece, "What I talk About When I talk About Running"upon my high recommendation.

I flirt with the idea of beginning a book that attracts me strongly. I enjoy its power of seduction. The book, unbought, sitting in a bookstore waiting for me to snatch it. I start by asking around: has anyone read it? Does anyone want to read it with me? This time, I didn't get a reaction. But the craving grew stronger, the attraction more powerful. I succumbed to the purchase. Relished the quiet time I would find at the end of a maternal day to discover my new book.

I opened the book knowing about its first chapter. However, the New York Times article just could not bottle up the essence of those opening pages: the incipit.  A waft of Murakami perfume drifted from its first paragraphs. I immediately imagined the scene in Manga animation, as if I were watching a precious movie by Hiroyuki Murito.

The first word of the novel is RADIO. The second sentence is about the music! The setting is a taxi caught in traffic. Isn't that a metaphor I use in my blog? Don't I obsess about the music I listen to on the Radio? In this case, it is classical music. Even here, I can identify for having heard the Japanese virtuoso, Seiji Ozawa, lead a concert in Geneva this summer.

I feel exhilirated because I am in tune with this Japan, mangas, music and author. The setting is exotic yet familiar.  That is when I allowed the book to kiss me! I was enamored!


  1. I was in the Mall with my son,when we parted looking for a book.We reached the cashier each carrying a book:IQ84.He had Volume 3 and I had a book that contains 3 volumes.Is it a coincidence or vibrations from our Bloggeuse?Will tell you when we start reading it.