Haruki Murakami never leaves stone unturned when it comes to writing hilariously funny, thrilling, mysterious, seductive and inventive novel. Hard-Boiled Wonderland and The End of The World has the touch of sci-fi data processing, fantasy in the hard-boiled wonderland, info war, suspense and some comedy. We are kept in suspense, often plunged with some odd characters. We tend to dwell in some kind of parallel world, not exactly the scientific parallel world we know. So, the story runs parallel, same time, one person but in two different worlds. One world seems to be real though.
Murakami’s trademark, a nameless character narrates the story. A data processing genius, working for a company had had his life placed somewhere mysterious by a professor, who seem to conduct neuro-physical research for good. There, this nameless guy thrives in both the worlds until he is brought to knowledge on it or in other words, expiration time.
He somehow involves in the info war with granddaughter of the professor, who has his laboratory established underground besides INKling dwelling (INKling seem like some kind of folklore animal related to fish family; prefers rotten human flesh). Rival companies as well as INKlings are after them, all in want of the data. In another world, it’s the end of the world. Surrounded by high walls, where one’s shadow is cut off, with it goes one’s consciousness and the people of the town got no mind at all, a hard-boiled wonderland. In this wonder world, memories are no more and yet no feelings, no love. Somehow, he thrives here or may be lives here.
Story in the end somehow expects the unexpected, revealing how mind is feeble and flexible. An easy to read but hard to grasp at times, this novel takes some stake in neuro-data processing or in simple words, processing data with conscious mind but through the brain (professor explains well though). All in all, a worth reading book and if you ever feel like to imagine some faraway surreal world, this book is the ticket.