This is merely an attempt to describe this prize specimen of human creativity put into words that is Murakami, the master of magical realism.
I remember the first time I ever read Murakami it was Kafka on the shore and I was in bed with a high fever and a huge pack of tissues. So delirious, drifting to and out of consciousness, clutching the book over the covers like it`s a tiny black kitten named Yoroichi that lives in my head when it`s left home alone. That day reading from chapter 6 to 49, leaving 3 chapters for the next day.
With each Murakami book, the reader gets a feeling of unity.
1. You get the sense of understanding the realizations and reflection that is conveyed to you through the pages a little better. Like every story is stronger are more mature and all those characters live in that other world waiting for us to pick them up so they could start talking and exploring and taunting us with those eloquent analogies and metaphors.
2. The consistent themes:
Conversations with strangers.
Leaving your physical body to escape into a dream world of lost
possibilities and weird sex.
Metaphysical mindf*ck (I really did tried to find a nicer word!)
The spaghetti. Any cooking really (too much in 1Q84) So back to After dark; from the pure point of view of "We".
We are invisible, anonymous intruders.
We note odors.
We are sheer point of view.
We cannot influence things in any way.
We hang midair over the city.
The "We" sees the events happening from 11:56 pm to 7:56 am.
The "We" unites into a single camera lens focusing in and out on Mari and Eri, sisters with one syllable different and worlds apart. Mari the younger sister is at a family restaurant reading a thick book (which she won`t tell the title. Mean mean Mari). And Eri, the older sister, the cover girl, is in a deep sleep in her own bed wearing her own pajamas in her own room.
It goes in a bit of a circle from Eri to Mari to Eri again, all those encounters and bizarre happenings that takes place After Dark.
Such places open secret entries into darkness in the interval between midnight and the time the sky grows light. None of our principles have any effect there. No one can predict when or where such abysses will swallow people, or when or where they will spit them out.
The reunion between the sisters is the key thread. On Eri`s mind from the beginning when meeting the Chinese prostitute and thinking she had never felt like she could be friend someone so easily to remembering the first time she truly felt close to her sister, their heart beating as one.
People leaving their reflection in mirrors after they leave the room.
And a beautiful girl who leaves her reality behind for another with an unplugged Tv screen as a barrier between the two.
Watching 'creatures in dark'
What she is trying to do now is to transform what her eyes grasp and her senses perceive into the simplest and most appropriate words she can find. And so the words themselves emerge directed half at us half at herself.
Sea creatures in that dark abyss of the ocean. The beautiful. The ugly. The law. Courts and judges and criminals beyond redemption.