A Wild Sheep Chase
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|A Wild Sheep Chase|
First US edition cover
|Original title||Hitsuji o meguru bōken
|Genre||Surreal novel, magical realism|
|October 15, 1982|
Published in English
|December 31, 1989|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover)|
|ISBN||ISBN 0-87011-905-2 (US)
ISBN 0-09-944882-3 (UK)
ISBN 4-06-200241-8 (JP)
|Dewey Decimal||895.6/35 20|
|LC Class||PL856.U673 H5713 1989|
|Preceded by||Pinball, 1973|
|Followed by||Dance Dance Dance|
A Wild Sheep Chase (羊をめぐる冒険 Hitsuji o meguru bōken?) is the third novel by Japanese author Haruki Murakami. First published in Japan in 1982, it was translated into English in 1989. It is an independent sequel to Pinball, 1973, and the third book in the so-called "Trilogy of the Rat". It won the 1982 Noma Literary Newcomer's Prize.
In A Wild Sheep Chase, Murakami blends elements of American and English literature with Japanese contexts, exploring post-WWII Japanese cultural identity. The book is part mystery and part magical realism with a postmodern twist.
This mock-detective tale follows an unnamed Japanese man through Tokyo and Hokkaidō in 1978. The passive, chain-smoking main character gets swept away on an adventure that leads him on a hunt for a sheep that has not been seen for years. The apathetic protagonist meets a woman with magically seductive ears and a strange man who dresses as a sheep and talks in slurs; in this way there are elements of Japanese animism or Shinto. The manipulation of the narrator into the hunt and repeated references to The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes raise connections to Conan Doyle's story "The Adventure of the Red-Headed League".
Murakami wrote a sequel to this book, entitled Dance Dance Dance, which also follows the adventures of the unnamed protagonist and the Sheep Man. However, its plot, tone and the majority of the characters are sufficiently different that Dance Dance Dance can be seen as separate from the "Trilogy of the Rat."
A Wild Sheep Chase (English edition) by Haruki Murakami; translated by Alfred Birnbaum.
- Hardcover – ISBN 0-87011-905-2, published in October, 1989 by Kodansha International
- Paperback – ISBN 0-452-26516-9, published on November 1, 1990 by Plume Fiction
- Paperback – ISBN 0-375-71894-X, published in 2002 by Vintage International
- Sato, Mikio (2006). 村上春樹の隣には三島由紀夫がいつもいる [The neighbor of Haruki Murakami always being Yukio Mishima] (in Japanese). PHP Institute.
- Takasawa, Shuji (2007). 吉本隆明 1945-2007 [Takaaki Yoshimoto 1945-2007] (in Japanese). INSCRIPT.
- Osawa, Masachi (2008). 不可能性の時代 [The times of Impossible] (in Japanese). Iwanami Shoten, Publishers.
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