1Q84 is probably the longest novel I've ever read, nearing 1000 pages. One of the reason I'm glad (and am hopeful) that this novel had not (and never will) be featured as one of the long list of novels I have to study.
Another reason I'm not going to recommend this as none other than light reading (for other lazy bums out there) is because the novel is packed with elements. Air Chrysalis, The Little People, mahza and dohta, Janacek's Sinfonietta (pardon me for the lack of accents) and even the characters themselves... wow. I'll have a hard time figuring what's what and what it can be perceived as. You know what it's like being in literature classes. There's no black and white, just an overwhelming gray area so dense sometimes I lost my way; in the middle of the assumptions, the interpretations and also some bullshit here and there.
Okay, all that above is the reason I dont want to study 1Q84.
But as a light reading material, it's just brilliant. SCARILY SO.
When I'm in the middle of the book, at times I just wanted to stop. "This book is too long, I'll just leave it for a while" or "OMG, can I just peek at the ending?" but at other times, I've become so obsessive over it. I just can't get it out of my head. Well, until this very moment when I've finally done reading, it still lingers.
Which brings me to the second point. It's memorable. And with the touch of mystical element of Air Chrysalis and The Little People in it, it has become even more interesting. This is no Red Riding Hood living in modern time. It's fresh, and it meant more to me than just a mixture of reality and fairy tale.
One thing that bother me is that it's too long. Perhaps because I read it on the computer screen, the experience is not too great. I'm sure I'd have no complaint if I get to read it on paperback or ebook reader.
And being a long novel actually doesnt hurt. It actually help me to form deeper bond with the characters inside the novel, especially Aomame. Well, maybe there's a little bit too much of repetition here and there, but I'd just skim over it. :P
Anyway, I'd recommend 1Q84 for light reading, and NOT for classroom discussion! LOL