Book - 2003
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Eiji Miyake arrives in a sprawling Japanese metropolis to track down the father he has never met, but the city is a mapless place if you are 18, broke, and the only person you can trust is John Lennon.
Publisher: New York : Random House, 2003, c2001
Edition: Random House trade pbk. ed
Description: 400 p. ; 21 cm
ISBN: 9780375507267
Branch Call Number: Mitc


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Jan 20, 2020

Eiji Miyake, barely 20, leaves his native island for Tokyo to search for his high ranking absent father. Fast, explosive, futuristic switches to touching, natural, realistic in the unquiet mind of the boy, sometimes too fast. The second half is better than the first, if only because the transitions are gentler. I like Cloud Atlas better because the genres were separated, but the prose is genius here and Japan comes alive.

May 17, 2018

Very strange. Unlike any book I have ever read and liked before. But yes, I enjoyed this weird someone else said, an acid trip, but a good one. The 'Goatwriter' tangents were incredible pieces of writing.

GeoffAbel May 19, 2014

While it's another one of Mitchell's formula (how many different voices can I write in in one novel?), both the story and the writing are great. What else is there? It very much seems to be a tribute to Murakami.

Apr 18, 2014

This book takes a surreal look at modern day Japan. The book is definitely well written with delightful prose. Due to dream sequences it can be a bit difficult to stay on top of the story. Worth reading for anyone who is interested.

tomcrisp May 12, 2013

NUMBER9DREAM is a story set in and in every way a fantasia of modern Japan. With looks back to tradition, to WWII and to family history, it also follows narrator Eiji, a young man of the country exposed (in many senses) to the world of 21st-century Tokyo: living in a "capsule"; organized crime wars: vapid minds and consumerism. The theme may be "be careful what you wish for" or possibly, "when you find what you seek, it may not be where you were looking." This is a terrific book, always engaging and often challenging. Even in moments of impatience, I skipped no more than a few paragraphs of this rich work.

brianreynolds Jul 29, 2011

Some reviews (and the cover blurb) take pains trying to find a genre niche for David Mitchell's second novel. One could consider shelving it next to Don Quixote, imho. number9dream reads primarily like a quest. Eiji Miyake is not only focused on the Holy Grail of an absent parent, but on the tightrope that separates reality from dream, from wish or the surrealism of contemporary urban society, quests that may be particularly poignant to youth. Eiji's search is frantic. He, a fragile 19 year old with little education or athletic prowess from an unsophisticated village, fares well in the company of heroes like James Bond or Indiana Jones. Mitchell can tell a story.

He can also deal with complexity. But he writes with a clarity and sense of timing that makes sense out of chaos and grips my attention in spite of its exotic and intricate track across places I have never seen.

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regnard Jan 18, 2013

regnard thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over


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