Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami is a little different from his usual books in that there is no obvious element of sci-fi-esque or ghostly fantasy, no otherworldly aspect to the tale aside from vivid dreams, self-doubt, guilt and metaphors. But it is still a beautiful book, and I couldn’t help but feel that the name Tsukuru Tazaki was chosen perfectly. As the story began, as Tsukuru felt himself colourless and meaningless, his name, too, was difficult for me to remember. But as the story grew, as his character took on a greater depth despite his belief that he is nothing more than an empty shell, so too did my memory of his name. This book doesn’t answer all his questions though. There are parts to it left untied – Shiro and Haida being the two most glaring loose ends. I have no doubt that this was done on purpose, that it was far from an oversight, to teach Tsukuru, and perhaps ourselves, that one can close certain chapters in their lives and move on, even if we don’t have all the answers, and how important it is to do so instead of lingering forever in the past. Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is a lot less complex compared to Murakami’s other works, but it is nonetheless a story with great depth and a good read for fans and beginner Murakami readers alike.

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