Haruki Murakami’s The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle took me forever to read—and I’ve read longer books faster. It was very dense with many characters and storylines to develop. I thought the main character was a bore, and he is crafted as such. The other characters were far more interesting, yet their stories were left unresolved in most cases. That said, there are some excellent sections that grip the reader, both with grotesque violence, and foggy dreamlike sequences. The language is lovely and poetic. I was left a bit in a trance by the language and a bit confused by the story, but overall I’m glad I read it.