I needed a new book and found a Banana

In January I began my first read of the year: 1Q84 by Murakami. I’d bought  a combined version of book 1 and 2 and though tempted to pause at the end of book 1 for a break to read something else, persevered out of fear that I wouldn’t return to it. I did the same when I reached the end of that one and went straight onto book 3. It was highly repetitive and in need of a good edit, but overall I’d rate it ‘good, but not incredible’. I’ll go into more detail in a later blog post.

Since then I’ve started and attempted a few books, none of which have really grasped my attention. I’ve given up on more books recently than ever and I don’t like it. I used to commit to reading a book in full, love or hate, until I tried my first Jane Austin. I couldn’t do it, and she ended up beneath my bed, gathering dust until I moved house and remembered the boredom she induced. (Sorry, Jane. I’m positively sure you were great for your time, but we’ve moved on to better things since then.)

I absolutely did not want to become a non-reader though, and was in danger of doing so, after several bedtimes of delaying going to bed to avoid the non-interest in reading. So after a good look through my bookshelves, and finding that I actually couldn’t find anything I wanted to read, and that I was running out of unread books, shockingly, I decided to go book shopping.

I’ve decided to go back to my old trusty rule of ‘buy one, read one’, and not buy another until said rule is carried out. And s

Kitchen by Bananan Yoshimoto

o I found this: a book by Banana. If an author whose name is Banana doesn’t tempt me I don’t know what will. After so much Murakami (and genuinely loving many of his other books) I’d considered trying some other Japanese fiction and found this.

Kitchen, by Banana Yoshimoto is a juxtaposition of two tales about mothers, transsexuality, bereavement, kitchen, love and tragedy in contemporary Japan. I can’t wait to read it, and that is the first time I’ve been able to say that in 2014.

If you have any must-read books, by an author named after a fruit or not, please recommend. I desperately need to fall in love with a book again, soon.


4 thoughts on “I needed a new book and found a Banana”

  1. I love Banana! She is amazing, and all of her books, especially “Lizard” are top-grade. 🙂 If you want to read more Japanese lit, I could probably suggest a few, too. ^_^

      1. If you liked Banana, you may also enjoy Akutagawa Ryunosuke, though he only did short stories (except for one very, very strange novel called “Kappa”.)

        Some other books I really liked were “Snow Country” by Yasunari Kawabata (which one the first Nobel prize for literature in Japan) and The Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima.

        Darker, but still a wonderful read, “Black Rain” about the WWII bombing in Hiroshima, by Masuji Ibase.

        And, a very weird tale, “The Woman in the Dunes”, which will make you itch every time you see sand, by Kobo Abe. 🙂

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