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Wisdom from 1Q84


While many authors are content with just offering up a page-turning good time, Haruki Murakami is keen to give the reader a whole load more to chew on. In his phenomenally successful 2009 novel 1Q84, he delivered the motherload.

As well as an undeniably gripping story, Murakami's book is packed with smart and thought-provoking lines. Here are 25 of the best.


“What we call the present is given shape by an accumulation of the past.”

“Life is so uncertain: you never know what could happen. One way to deal with that is to keep your pajamas washed.”

“You can keep as quiet as you like, but one of these days somebody is going to find you.”

“People need routines. It's like a theme in music. But it also restricts your thoughts and actions and limits your freedom. It structures your priorities and in some cases distorts your logic.”

“Please remember: things are not what they seem.”

“Life is not like water. Things in life don't necessarily flow over the shortest possible route.”

“If you can love someone with your whole heart, even one person, then there's salvation in life. Even if you can't get together with that person.”

“Nobody's easier to fool, than the person who is convinced that he is right.”

“Violence does not always take visible form, and not all wounds gush blood.”

“A person learns how to love himself through the simple acts of loving and being loved by someone else.”

“That's what the world is , after all: an endless battle of contrasting memories.”

“Principles and logic didn't give birth to reality. Reality came first, and the principles and logic followed.”

“Once you let yourself grow close to someone, cutting the ties could be painful.”

“Most of the psychological differences between men and women seem to come from differences in their reproductive system”

“You can't choose how you're born but you can choose how you die.”

“Even if we could turn back, we'd probably never end up where we started.”

“At some point the future becomes reality. And then it quickly becomes the past.”

“Time flows in strange ways on Sundays, and sights become mysteriously distorted.”

“Wherever there's hope there's a trial.”

“There’s nothing wrong with not looking like something. It just means you don’t fit the stereotype yet.”

“Everyone, deep in their hearts, is waiting for the end of the world to come.”

“People have to pay a price for the gifts they are given”

“Truth is often accompanied by intense pain, and almost no one is looking for painful truths”

“Reality is endlessly cold and lonely.”

“But I found that the longer you teach, the more you feel like a total stranger to yourself.”


(Images: Rex Features)



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