Book review: The Elephant Vanishes

The Elephant Vanishes- Haruki Murakami
Yep, I read more Murakami. I know, it's such a surprise! I'm not usually a fan of short stories but, in my quest to read everything written by Murakami, I had to read this one. Having read a lot of his now, it's clear that all the Murakami clichés are there for a reason: The apathetic male narrator, the 80s, spaghetti cooking, jazz records...

This made the one story narrated by a woman all the more shocking, since every other one of his stories and novels seems to be narrated by the same man, only with a different name. Nevertheless, I connect to them (him?) and this does mean you can jump into any of his books without needing a complex overview of a brand new character. 

As with any book of short stories, there are some that are more intriguing than others. I enjoyed The Dancing Dwarf and The Little Green Monster- both of which feature slightly threatening, intimidating characters. They seem to reveal the hidden insecurities within everybody's psyche.

Those stories that I didn't enjoy, which I won't name as I don't want to inflict my bias on anybody who might go on to read the book, are pretty bland and don't have anything about them that stands out: They just seem to be a list of Murakami clichés with nothing deeper or different about them. 

I'd recommend this book as an introduction to Murakami for anybody who wants to start reading his books. It works as a clear overview of his style and what to expect from his novels. 


  1. I've been having a lot of trouble getting back to reading again. I used to love to do it, but the quick, short-phrased world of internet had probably lessened my attention span, haha. I'm really interested in reading this now. I'm not usually a fan of short stories in a book but I think it'd be just what I need, and who doesn't love cooking spaghetti? Haha! :)

    - Jess
    The Mod Mermaid

    1. That's such a shame! I definitely think short stories are a good way of getting back into it.


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