R. Tim Morris’ Rating: 9/10
Oh, that ending could have been so much better! Actually, the book would have been near perfect without that last chapter at all. Aside from that, my biggest complaint was the character of Reiko; she just didn’t add anything for me and her whole story really just bogged down everything else around it. Take her right out and I think you’ve got a much stronger novel. (This of course is a pretty general, sweeping statement, but she certainly did not need to have so big a role. At least in my opinion.)
I was so close to giving this the 10-star treatment, but as it is Norwegian Wood is only near-perfect for me. It’s been a long time since I’ve gotten choked up from a book and it felt great. At least when I read this a second time (and I’m sure I will) I’ll know what parts to skip.
Haruki Murakami has really hooked me so far (1Q84 and Norwegian Wood), and I’ll be looking forward to another of his works. Kafka on the Shore, here I come.