Aug 31, 2014

Best Read of August - After Dark by Haruki Murakami
I had been hearing a lot about Haruki Murakami from other Peace Corps Volunteers, and I know one guy who liked Murakami's stories so much he lugged a large hardcover to a training instead of bringing a kindle like the rest of us did. So I knew I had to read one of his stories eventually. And now that I've read After Dark I want to read all of them.

This book is hard to explain. It mainly follows Mari for the course of a night, who had decided to spend it in a 24 hour Denny's reading to stay away from home. Of course, she meets someone, and then through them catches glimpses of a love hotel environment when asked to serve as a translator for a Chinese prostitute. You get the feeling that Mari is staying away from home because of her sister Eri, who is in an unnatural sleep.

There's a lot of unnatural stuff that happens in this book, most of which are not explained. Apparently that's a Murakami standard - paranormal elements in a literary book that are just accepted to be normal. And in that way I'm reminded a little of Toni Morison's Beloved.

It was these unnatural elements that stuck with me and drew me into the story. They captured my attention, though the characters did too, but these little tastes of the strange added just a hint of mystery to the story that kept me going. I flew through this book and enjoyed every paragraph.

In other news, I also want to say thank you very much to Annalisa Crawford and A Thousand Words, A Million Books for putting on a give away for Annalisa's new book, Our Beautiful Child. And Rafflecopter for selecting me as a winner ^_~ I can't wait to read it.


  1. Thanks for the shout-out - I hope you like it.

    After Dark was the first Murakami book I read, and I loved it. It's interesting that you're reminded of Beloved though, because I couldn't get into that book at all!

  2. I've heard so much about this author, but still haven't read any of his books! I sooo need to change that, sometime soon.