Get ready for surreal complexities from Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami with the release of his new work 1Q84 set for an English edition to be published on 18th October 2011. The first three volumes of the novel have already been published in Murakami’s native Japan, but the English edition will only feature the first two volumes, translated by Jay Rubin.
The title of the novel is a play on words with the Japanese pronunciation of the letter Q and the number 9 being the same. With obvious reference to George Orwell’s 1984 there is also some indication that 1Q84 continues other themes from 1984, including cold blooded, murderous extermination, alternative reality, the documentation of history, truth, extremism and love.
The first volume of the novel follows assassin Aomame as she flows through an unfamiliar and confusing reality during April and June of 1984. The second chapter traces July to September of the same year for unpublished novelist Tengo, who has been commissioned to re-write a promising novel written by 17 year old high school student Fukaeri.
1Q84 has been a massive literary success in Japan for Haruki Murakami, so expect the English edition to have a big impact in 2011. This will be followed by a Philip Gabriel translation of the third volume on the 25th October 2011.