Book Rating (15)
Narrator Rating (4)

Killing Commendatore

Unabridged Audio Book

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Kirby Heyborne

28 Hours 27 Minutes

Random House UK

October 2018

Audio Book Summary

Random House presents the audiobook edition of Killing Commendatore by Haruki Murakami, read by Kirby Heyborne.

The epic new novel from the internationally acclaimed and best-selling author of 1Q84.

In Killing Commendatore, a thirty-something portrait painter in Tokyo is abandoned by his wife and finds himself holed up in the mountain home of a famous artist, Tomohiko Amada. When he discovers a strange painting in the attic, he unintentionally opens a circle of mysterious circumstances. To close it, he must complete a journey that involves a mysterious ringing bell, a two-foot-high physical manifestation of an Idea, a dapper businessman who lives across the valley, a precocious thirteen-year-old girl, a Nazi assassination attempt during World War II in Vienna, a pit in the woods behind the artist’s home, and an underworld haunted by Double Metaphors.

A tour de force of love and loneliness, war and art – as well as a loving homage to The Great Gatsby – Killing Commendatore is a stunning work of imagination from one of our greatest writers.

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Reviews

  • Jee Hyun K.

    I really enjoyed this book. Characters are compelling, and I appreciated all the stories and developments each character had to offer. Main reason I don't give 5 out of 5 is that as someone who read >10 Murakami books, some of the plot progression became very predictable, based on my experience with his books. However, I thought 4 (rather than 3) is more appropriate because this novel is more grounded in reality than surrealism. I love both, but it was very refreshing and new to be taken on a magical adventure by Murakami I felt as though I could also experience in my own life. Narration was overall good but sounded robotic at times, with the narrator having the habit of ending each sentence with a monotone from the middle of the sentence. My hubby thought he sounded like Siri as well. It's not a masterpiece like 1Q84 (strongly recommended!) but definitely a solid work by one of the best writers out there.

    Book Rating

  • Chris L.

    I found this book disappointing and weak. The first two thirds of it was interesting, I thought it was leading up to a solid conclusion, but where it led was a confusing, metaphorical, wishy-washy I don't even know what...it seemed the author tried to build a story around some obscure literary word-play - personifying metaphors and 'double metaphors', whatever those are - using the plot of another book as its basis. A waste of listening time. I also didn't like the translation from the Japanese. It was obviously translated by an American - nothing wrong with that of course, BUT - it completely loaded with all-American phrases, like 'came out of left field' meaning very expected, 'in back' to mean behind the house...many more...jeez, this is a book set in Japan, Japanese characters in a Japanese setting - does it really have to be dripping with good-ole all-American apple pie for Americans to enjoy it..? Weak book, badly translated, with a pretty good narrator.

    Book Rating

  • Jo-Anne G.

    Listening to this novel is like entering a dream state in your conscious day to day moments. Each part of the story is connected to the other parts (which you would expect of course) but the way in which the narrative makes that connection is the strength of the book. At times you wonder: what links this to that? Why stop the thread to tell this story? It’s beautifully written, strangely evocative, with characters who drift effortlessly around the narrative. I loved it.

    Book Rating