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Men Without Women

Narrated by: Bruno Roubicek
Length: 7 hrs and 36 mins
Categories: Fiction, Literary
4 out of 5 stars (274 ratings)

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Summary

Across seven tales, Haruki Murakami brings his powers of observation to bear on the lives of men who, in their own ways, find themselves alone. Here are vanishing cats and smoky bars, lonely hearts and mysterious women, baseball and the Beatles, woven together to tell stories that speak to us all.

Marked by the same wry humor that has defined his entire body of work, in this collection Murakami has crafted another contemporary classic.

©2014 Haruki Murakami (P)2017 W. F. Howes Ltd

Critic reviews

"Such is the exquisite, gossamer construction of Murakami's writing that everything he chooses to describe trembles with symbolic possibility." ( Guardian on Norwegian Wood)
"Brilliantly combines elements of the surreal, film noir and existentialist enquiry." ( Sunday Times on Dance, Dance, Dance)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Modern day Hemingway

Taking​ the title from the original Ernest Hemingway novel, Haruki Murakami has updated it for a modern audience in different parts of the world, primarily Japan.

It is a series of portraits of men who have chosen the path of loneliness away from women and the void that it creates when running away from intimacy. Beautiful, simplistic with a wonderful flow, Murakami has a spectacular way of building characters and their anecdotal narratives.

11 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Murakami deserves better

I have loved some recent books and this narration by Bruno Roubicek throws into relief the importance, the vital importance, of a good narrator. The writing had a deadened, flat quality and Murakami is never dead or flat. I really didn't like this (as you might have gathered, lol).

8 people found this helpful

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Sadly let down by the narrator

Why would anyone narrate a book or ( short story ) and give a Japanese characters a dodge geordie accent .

5 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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The narration is pretty poor,

The stories are rambling but provocative and unmistakably Murakami. Enjoyable if not his best work.
The narration is pretty poor, particularly his use of accents, the lowlight being a Geordie accent in one story which makes it difficult to listen to.
The voice is monotonous and lacks characterisation.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Bad narration

there's something about the narrator that iabvery annoying, I try to imagine the Japanese characters but the pitch and accent from the narrator ruined the whole experience.

3 people found this helpful

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Absorbing

I’m a big fan of Murakami and thought this collection of stories was really enjoyable. I listened to it walking to work and found myself completely absorbed, unwilling to turn it off. As I’ve said in previous reviews of his work, there is something I really love about Hurakami’s writing. I find it absorbing, almost hypnotic. I found myself drawn deep into every story. I liked that I had no expectations for the story, they all took me by surprise and ended somewhere I never expected, full of odd turns. My favourite story was Sansa In Love. This is such a funny, weird and brilliant story, it stopped me in my tracks and I couldn’t stop laughing. Pure genius. I have to say the title story is the weakest in the collection. I loved the premise but found it rambled a lot and didn’t work. Men Without Men is very good and I’d recommend it.

3 people found this helpful

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Very disappointed

Expected better twisted stories from Murakami, this book was very boring barely managed to listen till the end

2 people found this helpful

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Free credit worthy.

Now I enjoyed the stories as I felt that some of them revisited characters in 1Q84, the wind up bird chronicles and killing commendatore or Kafka on the shore. The narrator however ruined the whole book for me. He read the story so slowly, several times I picked up my phone to make sure it was still on and playing. If the story was read by an enthusiastic narrator you could easily shave an hour off the total running time.
This is definitely one to be missed in Audible format. Buy the book and get Alexa to read it to you.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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Culturally interesting, slightly offbeat stories

I found the Japanese context quite interesting but ultimately the stories were a bit monolithic and somewhat odd. There's also a sense of the stories ending abruptly, perhaps because the author had run out of steam on that idea. Not really an attention grabber, I was quite keen to get to the end of this audio book.

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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7 stories... 4 excellent, 3 merely good

As with most collections of short stories, some are better others, but overall the quality is really high. My personal favourite is the one about the bar owner. Very good narration too, pacing and intonation are spot on.

1 person found this helpful