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What I Talk about When I Talk about Running by Haruki Murakami
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What I Talk about When I Talk about Running

A Memoir

$10.76 USD

Retail price (USD): $11.95

Discount: 10%

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Narrator Ray Porter
Translator Philip Gabriel
Length 4 hours 23 minutes
Language English
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From the bestselling author of Kafka on the Shore comes this rich and revelatory memoir about writing and running and the integral impact both have made on his life. Equal parts training log, travelogue, and reminiscence, this revealing memoir covers Murakami’s four-month preparation for the 2005 New York City Marathon. Settings range from Tokyo, where he once shared the course with an Olympian, to the Charles River in Boston, among young women who outpace him. Through this marvelous lens of sport emerges a cornucopia of memories and insights: the eureka moment when he decided to become a writer, his triumphs and disappointments, his passion for vintage LPs, and the experience, after age fifty, of having seen his race times improve and then fall back.

HARUKI MURAKAMI was born in Kyoto in 1949 and now lives near Tokyo. His work has been translated into more than fifty languages, and the most recent of his many international honors is the Hans Christian Andersen Literature Award, whose previous recipients include J. K. Rowling, Isabel Allende, and Salman Rushdie. 

Ray Porter is an AudioFile Earphones Award–winning narrator and fifteen-year veteran of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. He has appeared in numerous films and television shows, including Almost Famous, ER, and Frasier.

Philip Gabriel has published translations of four novels, one short story collection, and two works of non-fiction by Haruki Murakami, as well as short stories of Murakami’s in The New Yorker, Harper’s, and elsewhere. His translation of Kuroi’s novel Life in the Cul-de-sac won the 2001 Japan-US Friendship Commission Prize for the translation of Japanese Literature, and in 2006 he was awarded the PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club Translation Prize for his translation of Murakami’s Kafka on the Shore, a book which was selected by The New York Times as one of the Ten Best Books of 2005. He has recently completed translations of a second novel by Yoshida Shuichi, Parade, and Murakami’s latest novel, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage.

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Reviews

“Murakami crafts a charming little volume notable for its good-natured and intimate tone…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.”

“The bestselling author of wildly imaginative novels like The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle here muses ‘in real time’ about his sport and hobby, long-distance running. While Murakami writes that he worked over the text, it seems starkly unself-conscious (or poorly translated)—as when he talks about shining his running shoes. And yet this lack of guardedness as presented in Ray Porter’s forthright and relaxed voice gives the book rare bite. Murakami isn’t pushing his running, or his prose. ‘It doesn’t matter what field you’re talking about, beating somebody else just doesn’t do it for me.’ If Murakami had a point to make, or if Porter had tried harder—had embellished the text or reached for an accent—this recording would fail. Instead it succeeds brilliantly. No secrets here, just the companionship of a dazzling intellect.”

“Murakami’s single-minded focus on the task at hand will impress runners and athletes of all levels…His discipline also extends to his writing, which he approaches with the simple but devoted attention of a master craftsman…as always Murakami employs his artful, lucid prose to good effect.”

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