Haruki Murakami is one of those authors I always vaguely feel like I ought to read, but never quite get around to picking up. I wound up getting this because, well, it was available used for five bucks (it's a hardcover), and seemed worth a shot.
I'm not really sure what to say about this book. It's one of his earlier books, first published in the mid-80s in Japan (which accounts for some odd touches, like the lack of CD players in a book that's set in the future) and is split into two parts, following different stories that initially don't appear to interact. In one, the "hard-boiled wonderland" part, the narrator is a nameless Japanese "Calcutec", who makes his living encrypting information for other people by running it through his subconscious. In the other, the "end of the world" section, the nameless narrator finds himself in a very allegorical-feeling walled town, in which he's separated from his shadow, has lost his memories, and must "read old dreams" from a library of unicorn skulls.
Eventually, these two plot lines come together, in a manner which is probably screamingly obvious from the description above: the strange town at the end of the world is a construct of the subconscious of the narrator from the hard-boiled wonderland. There are a number of possibilities as to where the story can go from there, so I won't spoil it further, should you want to read the book to find out.
That's fundamentally the problem with the book. The narrator is so unengaging that almost the only reason to keep reading the book is a vague curiosity to see which of the handful of possible directions the story will take. Not only does he not have a name, he doesn't have much of a personality and sort of drifts serenely through the plot as if none of it really matters. The book's chock full of pop-culture references, most of them Western, that attempt to stand in for a personality but fail, and while there's some nicely surreal bits in the plot, the lack of emotional involvement on the part of the narrator makes it hard to really care about those.