Kafka On The Shore cover

Kafka On The Shore

by Haruki Murakami

published in 

first published in 2002

translated by Philip Gabriel


✔ Available to borrow

480 pages

published by Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

published in New York, NY

owned in E–Book format

This book was a really painful read, and I want to give anyone who might be interested in reading it a content warning: there is a rape scene that left me shook up. Murakami, as always, is deeply interested and insightful in looking at the uneasy ambiguities of life. I just ask why the horrors of this ambiguity always seems to fall so copiously on the shoulders of his female characters, and specifically on their bodily autonomy.

Every time I read Murakami, I feel like I learn new colors. I take issue with the patterns Murakami uses to create the surreal horror in his worlds, but I am truly thankful for the music he plays for you once he brings you to the bottom of his ocean.

This book, like all his other books, follows a fairly mundane cast of characters in a mostly modern Japan, but dunks the scene in deep supernatural uncertainty. This book draws on Greek tragedies like Oedipus Rex, and weaves them into a coming of age story that is decidedly postmodern. It will demand you accept many uncertain things to be precariously half-true at the same time, will make you queasy, and will reward you with truly new kinds of rejuvenating pictures and sounds.


Murakami, Haruki. Kafka On The Shore. Vintage International. New York, NY: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2006. E–Book.