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What I Talk About When I Talk About Running


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The first insight into the life of this cult writer

About the Author

Haruki Murakami was born in Kyoto in 1949 and now lives near Tokyo. His work has been translated into forty-two languages. The most recent of his many honours is the Franz Kafka Prize.


If we all ran like brilliant Japanese novelist Murakami, would we write as well as he does? Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Murakami's latest is a nonfiction work mostly concerned with his thoughts on the long-distance running he has engaged in for much of his adult life. Through a mix of adapted diary entries, old essays, reminiscences and life advice, Murakami crafts a charming little volume notable for its good-natured and intimate tone. While the subject matter is radically different from the fabulous and surreal fiction that Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle) most often produces, longtime readers will recognize the source of the isolated, journeying protagonists of the author's novels in the formative running experiences recounted. Murakami's insistence on focusing almost exclusively on running can grow somewhat tedious over the course of the book, but discrete, absorbing episodes, such as a will-breaking 62-mile "ultramarathon" and a solo re-creation of the historic first marathon in Greece serve as dynamic and well-rendered highlights. Murakami offers precious little insight into much of his life as a writer, but what he does provide should be of value to those trying to understand the author's long and fruitful career. An early section recounting Murakami's transition from nightclub owner to novelist offers a particularly vivid picture of an artist soaring into flight for the first time. (Aug.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Murakami gives me a reason. It might seem romantic, but it's true. I had to run...but I didn't enjoy running. I do enjoy, however, running with Murakami. -- Ioan Marc Jones * Huffington Post UK *
Murakami distils his own process of writing fiction in this layered and meditative memoir. * Big Issue *
A wonderful exploration of work, place and life's meanders. * Geographical *
It's an inspiring, reflective read that'll make you want to dust your trainers off -- Andy McNicoll * Professional Social Work *
An outstanding read -- Peter Sharkey * Eastern Daily Press *

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