The novel is cartoonish in that Eiji has a vivid and violent imagination that fills the book with daydreams. When not chain-smoking, forlorn Eiji wanders the city following vague or cryptic leads that invariably dead-end or land him back among yakuza. Mitchell (author of the critically acclaimed Ghostwritten) has a smart, eclectic writing style that seems foreign, and the novel is well paced, but the yakuza encounters are too cinematic, complete with unusual torture and pyrotechnics. Moreover, in addition to Eiji's daydreams, the last half of the book contains excerpts from the diaries of his great uncle's World War II naval heroics and bizarre short stories that Eiji reads while hiding--the latter of which make for tedious reading.
Number9Dream is crafted from too many disparate components; it does not seem to be a full expression, but an overly crowded one. Readers will sympathize with Eiji and his search, but in the end will wonder what effect, if any, all the extraneous forces had on him. The book provides many fun moments, but ultimately it doesn't really add up to the sum of its parts. --Michael Ferch --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Okay, I realise (judging from some of the other reviews) that this novel will NOT appeal to everyone, but I thought it was brilliant. I loved the "manga" quality. Read morePublished on July 5 2008 by Canuck Baritone
First of all, most of the other reviewers comments are true, even the comments of those who hated the book. Read morePublished on May 4 2002 by Mark Delaney
Number9Dream is a story from David Mitchell (who is also known for his bestseller Ghostwritten). It takes place in Japan and is about a 20 year old "man of the world", Eiji Miyake. Read morePublished on March 27 2002 by Joseph Sanchez
The scope of David Mitchell's imagination is astounding. This book moves through the unreal realm of video games, the horror of mafia retribution, the futility of war and the... Read morePublished on Feb. 23 2002 by "jean_frost"
I am a great fan of Haruki Murakami, and was very impressed by David Mitchell's first novel "Ghostwritten" which managed to combine the magic of Murakami's modern Japan with a... Read morePublished on Feb. 20 2002 by D. Pritchard