There are two distinct camps of Murakami fans: the novels and the stories. Yet the economic brevity and surprising emotional punch of this novel satisfies both those groups. This is a book to be read (devoured) in a day or two and then haunt you for the rest of the week.
Few writers can achieve the hypnotic grasp that Haruki Murakami holds on his reader - combining a cool, detached distance with an emotionally charged empathy. Sputnik Sweetheart is a hunting novel of yearning, loneliness and loss that lives with the reader well beyond the closing of the book.
Part romance, part detective story, Sputnik Sweetheart tells the story of a tangled triangle of uniquely unrequited love.
K is madly in love with his best friend, Sumire, but her devotion to a writerly life precludes her from any personal commitments. At least, that is, until she meets an older woman to whom she finds herself irresistibly drawn. When Sumire disappears from an island off the coast of Greece, K is solicited to join the search party—and finds himself drawn back into her world and beset by ominous visions. Subtle and haunting, Sputnik Sweetheart is a profound meditation on human longing.
About the Author
Born in Kyoto, Japan, in 1949, Haruki Murakami grew up in Kobe and now lives near Tokyo. The most recent of his many honors is the Yomiuri Literary Prize, whose previous recipients include Yukio Mishima, Kenzaburo Oe, and Kobo Abe. His work has been translated into moer than fifty languages.
“Grabs you from its opening lines. . . . [Murakami’s] never written anything more openly emotional.” –Los Angeles Magazine
“Murakami is a genius.” –Chicago Tribune
“Murakami has an unmatched gift for turning psychological metaphors into uncanny narratives.” –The New York Times Book Review
“An agonizing, sweet story about the power and the pain of love. . . . Immensely deepened by perfect little images that leave much to be filled in by the reader’s heart or eye.” –The Baltimore Sun
“[Murakami belongs] in the topmost rank of writers of international stature.” –Newsday
“Murakami’s true achievement lies in the humor and vision he brings to even the most despairing moments.” –The New Yorker
“Perhaps better than any contemporary writer, [Murakami] captures and lays bare the raw human emotion of longing.” –BookPage
“Murakami . . . has a deep interest in the alienation of self, which lifts [Sputnik Sweetheart] into both fantasy and philosophy.” –San Francisco Chronicle
“Not just a great Japanese writer but a great writer, period.” –Los Angeles Times Book Review