The Elephant Vanishes by Haruki Murakami

The Elephant Vanishes is a collection of short stories written by Haruki Murakami. It’s the first book I read by the Japanese author and I really enjoyed reading it.

The book comprises 17 stories, not all of the same quality but those which are the best, they are just amazing. What makes these stories great is their absurdity, the way they are framed and because they are very is easy to read.

Murakami is very acquainted with Western culture and his stories make lots of references to Western music, literature and history.

These are the stories that caught my attention.

Lederhosen is a story about a married couple going through a relationship crisis: the wife wants to divorce her husband because he wanted a pair of lederhosen.

The Elephant Vanishes is about a person who is obsessed with the disappearance of an elephant from the zoo and the stories around it. On his first date with a woman, he gets the urge to talk about this and tells her everything he knows about the topic.

The Second Bakery Attack is about a person who decided to rob a bakery. He did this as a youngster and he did that with one of his friends. The thing is the did not want money from there, they only wanted bread, so the owner told them if they can listen to Wagner’s music, they can get all the bread they want. So they decided to listen to The Flying Dutchman and Tannhäuser and they get their bread.

Other stories that I liked The Wind-Up Bird and Tuesday’s Women which is about this man getting a strange call in the morning and his search for his missing cat, while Barn Burning is about three people, one girl and two guys and one of them having this weird ‘hobby’ to burn barns.

This Elephant Vanishes is an amazing collection of stories. I would give this book five stars out of five because it was funny and entertaining.

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