Fortunately publishing house W. W. Norton & Company are looking to break down that barrier June 7th, 2010. And if you're curious as to whether or not reading about the surgical exploits of a spurned would-be lover will match the ferocity of Miike's adaptation, I think these quotes culled from Amazon's Audition product page should help sway your mouse towards the Pre-Order button:
"The prose in these passages is elegiac and affecting, but it has the sharp, visceral feel of the butcher's knife or surgeons scalpel a highly compulsive, one-sitting read, and Audition should add to the Renaissance Man's growing fanbase in the English speaking world." -- Irvine Welsh, Guardian
"Murakami has gained a reputation as a diagnostician of Japanese culture in the Bret Easton Ellis/Chuck Palahniuk mode for all his gory details, and his insistence that modern life is just one more movie, Murakami remains a romantic. Trauma and nostalgia may defeat each other, but there's always hope in the form of the next generation." -- Telegraph PRAISE FOR PIERCING
"There are echoes here of Edgar Allan Poe and Dostoevsky - Murakami shares their fascination with the darkest layer of the soul, and the appalling isolation of the criminal. Creepy and gripping." -- The Times
"The fame, or even notoriety, of Ryu Murakami lies in his ability to write tightly plotted, well-written tales of violence, seedy sex and horror combined with a vivid sense of the neon-slashed but oppressive atmosphere of the Tokyo street, all underpinned with a fashionable nihilism." -- Sunday Telegraph
Thanks to 24FramesPerSecond.net for the find.