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Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Updated: Jan 6, 2020

Haruki Murakami, 2003

English Translation Vintage, 2005

This book, picked up along with Oé’s short story Seventeen from my friend and co-worker Becky, seemed enticing at the beginning, with a strange character who appeared to be an invisible friend or maybe a ghost running away from home with the main character.

Early on, I liked this description of a troubled soul : "Your heart is like a great river after a long spell of rain, spilling over its banks.  All signposts that once stood on the ground are gone, inundated and carried away by that rush of water."

However, I quickly found myself getting a bit bored, and then, to make it alas worse not better, a talking cat appears. Not for me! I don’t mind books where ONLY the animals talk, like Animal Farm, but I don’t like when animals start talking with humans. I don’t know why, it’s just usually a game stopper for me!

However, if you are not so easily put off, try this book. Becky loved it!

Update on 6 January 2020:

In a Girlfriends!!!!!! text conversation on 20/12/19, Becky said:

There is a temple I love in Tokyo but I don't remember exactly where. It's not the one in Yoyogi park... It's near Ropponghi down a hill in the opposite direction from the Tower. In a residential neighborhood. It's a magical place. I thought about this temple when I read Kafka on the Shore.

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Proving we're all different! Thanks for the comment.


Julia R
Julia R

Thomas loves this book—and the talking cat!

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