Haruki Murakami, Hear The Wind Sing, Pinball)

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Introduction: The Trilogy of the Rat is definitely one of the most unusual names given to a collection of three books. The first three novels of the famous Japanese writer, Haruki Murakami, Hear The Wind Sing, Pinball, 1973 and A Wild Sheep Chase, have been popularly ascribed by the above name. The primary and most literal explanation of this peculiar naming is that each of the three books has an enigmatic if not metaphorical secondary character called Rat and much of the essence of the novels emerges through his exploits. There has been much debate about the identity of the Rat; whether he is actually a person, a struggling, drifting, dissatisfied author, or he is, in the end, only a figment of the narrator‘s imagination, a bafflingly personal alter-ego associated with memory and desire. Notwithstanding the crisis of identity, Rat is the only character who receives a proper name, however curious it might be, from Murakami. With the exception of J, the Chinese bartender (who has only an alphabet for a name), all other characters are either identified on the basis of their relations to the narrator or their physical attributes or a general phrase describing that person or his occupation. One of Murakami‘s eminent translators, close friend and self-confessed fan, Jay Rubin, in his brilliant book writes: “Earlier in his career Murakami said he was uncomfortable assuming the stance of a god-like creator, deigning to impose names on his characters and narrating their actions in

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