Norwegian Wood Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Norwegian Wood

Naoko and Kizuki were a lifelong couple but their romance ended with Kizuki's inexplicable, tragic suicide shortly before high school graduation. Serious and quiet Toru, Kizuki's friend and enforcer, meets cute Naoko in Tokyo when they are entering college in the late 60's and falls in love with her. Nonetheless, Naoko finds it impossible to love anyone else, and as Toru struggles on his own to make new friends and break ground for his life, Naoko withdraws even further from him, ending up in a commune-sanatorium for depressed people. Toru's resulting bleak, lonely lifestyle is challenged when he meets Midori, a charming classmate who forces her way into his life with her wit and strong sense of independence and sexual liberation. Who will Toru choose to be his lifelong companion? And what will become of the un-chosen one?
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The book, set in the turbulence of the anti-Vietnam War movement, uses a thoughtful tone of narration to tell about a person forced to make what's best in transforming the dreams of a boy into the destiny of a man.
The review of this Book prepared by Sergio Mendoza

This wonderful book explores the loves and sexual adventures of student Toru Watanabe in 1960s Tokyo. Watanabe is in love with beautiful and mentally ill Naoko who is estranged to an asylum in the mountains. Naoko was his best friend's girlfriend until the friend inexplicably committed suicide at the age of 17. However into Watanabe's life marches the impetuous and slightly crazy Midori. He considers himself to be an ordinary student much to the delight of Midori. He succeeds in tenderly reconciling the past in order to move into the future. This melancholic book depicts beautifully the loves of this lonely outsider who is adrift in a sea of tragedy and passion.
The review of this Book prepared by John Marcel

Chapter Analysis of Norwegian Wood

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   thoughtful Time/era of story    -   1960's-1970's Romance/Romance Problems    -   Yes Kind of romance:    -   seduction (yum!)    -   boatload of casual sex without love Kids growing up/acting up?    -   Yes Kids:    -   struggling to earn a living to survive Internal struggle/realization?    -   Yes Kind of sex:    -   incest Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Age group of kid(s) in story:    -   college Something wrong upstairs/downstairs?    -   searching for identity/meaning Loving/sexing?    -   girl chasing Taboo sex story?    -   Yes Unmarried Love Triangle?    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   student Age:    -   a teen Ethnicity/Nationality    -   Japanese


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   7 () Asia/Pacific    -   Yes Asian country:    -   Japan City?    -   Yes City:    -   dirty, grimy (like New York)    -   wealthy

Writing Style

Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   descript of kissing    -   touching of anatomy    -   licking    -   lesbians!    -   actual description of hetero sex    -   Boob talk!    -   Vagia talk!    -   Weiner talk! Amount of dialog    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

Books with storylines, themes & endings like Norwegian Wood

Haruki Murakami Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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