In case you were worried about not having a totally bizarre self-help book to refer to this year, Haruki Murakami has released a book of advice for you. Back in February, Murakami started his own advice column (which was a pretty offbeat move to begin with) — and now 473 select nuggets of advice have been published in one helpful hardback. The front cover is a picture of Murakami himself drinking tea in between a doughnut-eating cat and a ram holding a record, so that should give you a good idea of how grounded this advice is going to be.
Murakami has a strong cult following, and his surreal and magical novels do cover issues like childhood, reality, and unhappiness quite beautifully, so it’s no surprise that his fans had 37,465 questions to ask him about their lives. Wait — I take that back. His fans had 37,465 life questions to ask the guy whose lifetime dream is to sit at the bottom of a well?! I don’t get you people.
Murakami’s publisher only selected a few hundred pieces of advice to go into the book, but Murakami himself is pretty convinced that all 3,716 of his answers are gold-dust. So by the author’s own special request, a digital copy of Murakami’s column is being produced with all 3,716 of them. That’s essentially the length of an 8-volume book. Murakami is a genius writer, no doubt about it — but he is also mad as a March hare and I’m not sure he should be dishing out eight volumes of life advice.
Sadly, the books are only available in Japanese at the moment, but luckily for English-speakers, Vulture translated some of the answers. They include gems like Murakami advising a recently bereaved woman that the afterlife is probably just sleeping and “eating deep-fried oysters” — and singing “I can’t stop loooooooving you” to a man broken-hearted over his ex. That’s it, I’m making a petition to have it translated. If I’m ever going to become a fully functioning adult, I need Murakami’s advice book in my life.