Thursday, October 16, 2014

Nocturnes (by Kazuo Ishiguro)

I am not really a short story person, which is something that has pained many people who have tried to get me to read Birds of America or any given America's Best Short Stories collection. I often am left wanting more at the end of a short story, and feel jarred by the shift from story to story. In keeping with the theme of this reading year, I have made peace with this. There are also some explicitly farcical moments in a couple of the stories.

All that said, this short story collection is by Kazuo Ishiguro, so you know I had to get it. Of course then it languished on my bookshelf because.... short stories. I have to say that Ishiguro's style, which always leaves you wanting more, is very suited to the short story style. These stories are thematically linked by music and nightfall, as well as an Ishiguroian sense of regret.

My favorite story was probably the first one, about a musician in Venice who runs into a famous over-the-hill musician and helps him serenade his wife. But I enjoyed them all, and found this collection very easy to read. Knowing Ishiguro, it's also going to have an immense re-readability factor--I find his novels get better the more you read them, and I'm betting his short stories are the same.

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