After Dark by Haruki Murakami

After DarkAfter Dark by Haruki Murakami

Format: Mass Market Paperback
ISBN: 0307278735 (ISBN13: 9780307388889)

Read from September 17 to September 19, 2013
second-hand, owned
My rating: 4 of 5 stars ★★★★

A couple of months ago, my friend was selling two of her books for a very reasonable price. The books were After Dark by Haruki Murakami and Looking for Alaska by John Green. Since the books were priced a lot cheaper than the original price, and they were written by two respectable authors, I bought the books and my friend shipped them straight from Davao. They had been sitting on my bookshelf for some time, and it was only recently that I felt I am ready to read another Murakami book.

The whole happenings in the novelette have taken place in only a span of a night. Mari was staying at Denny’s as she reads a thick book, when a guy named Takahashi approached her. He plays trombone for a band, and he remembers Mari as Eri’s younger sister, and who also happens to be his date in a swimming party two summers ago.

In the course of that night, Mari met Kaoru, a retired female wrestler, who now works as a manager of love ho (shortened for love hotel, which is actually the Japanese equivalent of a “motel” here in the Philippines); a Chinese prostitute who was beaten and stripped by her customer in that love ho; and some of the staff of the love ho, Korogi and Komugi. Apart from them, there were also other people mentioned in the book: Shirakawa, a sadistic computer expert; and Eri, Mari’s older sister who happens to be asleep for two months! Though there are some characters that didn’t really interact directly with each other, each of them seemed related and entwined with each other.

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Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Kafka on the ShoreKafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Format: Mass Market Paperback
ISBN: 0307275264 (ISBN13: 9780307275264)
Read from December 30, 2013 to January 4, 2014
owned book, second hand
My rating: ★★★★★

This is the third Haruki Murakami book that I’ve read. The first novel was Norwegian Wood, and the second one was After Dark, both rated with four stars. I really looked for a copy of this book because I need to read this for my Afro-Asian Literature class. I was surprised to find Haruki Murakami’s name in the list; and because I am a fan of his works, I immediately picked his book to write a term paper on as a requirement for our Afro-Asian Lit.

Memories warm you up from the inside. But they also tear you apart.

Kafka on the Shore comprises of two distinct yet interrelated plots. The odd chapters tells the story of Kafka Tamura, a fifteen-year-old boy who runs away from home to escape the oedipal prophecy made by his father, and to search for his mother and sister. On his journey, he met Sakura , and later finds himself in Komura Memorial Library run by Oshima and Miss Saeki. The even chapters, on the other hand, tells the story of Satoru Nakata, who never recovered from a wartime affliction but could talk to cats, along with other extraordinary abilities. Continue reading