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Hear the Wind Sing (The Rat #1)

3.59  ·  Rating Details ·  7,962 Ratings  ·  652 Reviews
Hear the Wind Sing is the first novel by Haruki Murakami; it first appeared in the June 1979 issue of Gunzo, one of the most influential literary magazines in Japan.

It is the first of the "boku" tetralogy; translated by Alfred Birnbaum.
Paperback, 130 pages
Published 1979 by Kodansha International Ltd.
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Greg Z Dave, interesting question. If forced to choose who the narrator might be, I'd answer it according to the musical references within this book. Given…moreDave, interesting question. If forced to choose who the narrator might be, I'd answer it according to the musical references within this book. Given the authors love of music (all kinds) and given the author's selection of albums which he purchases, I'd say Murakami is the narrator. But as Anna Einstein says, all the characters are a bit Murakami: all characters in any author's fiction works must have a bit of the author's identity within themselves.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Petra Eggs
I tried to get into Wind/Pinball: Two Novels and I have to say that although the prose reads beautifully, it flows into my mind and out again, smoothly, a slick of oil on a ripple, now it's gone. I read more than half before finally wondering why was I putting myself through this. It wasn't a test. I don't have to measure up to any standard. This is just for enjoyment and I wasn't enjoying it. Nothing I read, or listened to (I tried both) held my attention. Marukami's characters were just people ...more
Jul 29, 2011 Megha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviews

Perfect example of beauty in simplicity!

Even after having read a bunch of novels by Murakami, I always find a new flavor in each of them. Sure they have some similar characters and recurring themes, but each of his novels does have a different note in its voice and a different mood.

Hear the Wind Sing again has a nameless narrator, quirky characters, off-the-wall dialogue, lots of beer, some music and some literature. His characters are the last people one would expect to break into an emotional
Oct 08, 2013 Darwin8u rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
"How can those who live in the light of day possibly comprehend the depth of night?"
- Nietzche


A nice first novel(la) with most all the known Murakami tropes already stirred in. There is music (pop, jazz, classical) with specific references to actual pressings. There are: cats, bars, whiskey, birds, alienation and needy women. Murakami ventures into existential philosophy and Western literature (both real and fake). It is all there. Things that would later pop up again and again in his later, str
Ahmad Sharabiani
Hear the Wind Sing (The Rat, #1), Haruki Murakami
عنوان: بشنو آواز باد را - کتاب 1 - سری موش صحرایی؛ نویسنده: هاروکی موراکامی؛ مترجم: گیل آوایی؛ هلند، هنر و ادبیات پرس لیت، آبان 1393؛ در 293 ص؛ شابک: 9786007545097؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان ژاپنی قرن 20 م
عنوان: بشنو آواز باد را - کتاب 1 - سری موش صحرایی؛ نویسنده: هاروکی موراکامی؛ مترجم: آراز بارسقیان؛ تهران، میلکان، 1393؛ در 150 ص؛ شابک: 9786007545097؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان ژاپنی قرن 20 م
گیل آوایی مترجم اثر میگوید: روز درد را میشمارم، شب رو
Hannah Messler
Dec 12, 2008 Hannah Messler rated it it was amazing
James found out that the only two Murakami books I haven't read are this one and Pinball, 1973. He got me this one and then, because the other is like rare and therefore expensive (these two earliest Murakami novels have been translated but not published here--only in Japan, I guess, by cute Kodansha) HE MADE ME A COPY OF PINBALL. That is right, he MADE me one. He got the text from some fan's website, printed everything out, COLLATED that shit or whatever, and then BOUND it.

Tell me that is not
Sam Quixote
Jun 01, 2016 Sam Quixote rated it liked it
Haruki Murakami’s first novel Hear the Wind Sing is like a lot of first novels in that it’s unfocused, rambling and mostly about the author - and yet it’s kinda compelling because of how well written it is!

There’s no story to speak of. The novel takes place within 3 weeks of the summer of 1970 where our nameless narrator in his early 20s bums around his small town. He meets a wealthy spoilt brat called The Rat who sits in a bar, reads Western novels, and spouts pseudo-intellectual nonsense. He
Jan 16, 2012 Teresa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In November this book traveled from Japan to New Orleans via my son and then traveled back to Japan with me the following month. I brought it because it's small and lightweight, easily fitting in my carry-on, so I could read it on the plane ride over.

If you already know HM's work, this first novella of his might seem lightweight in substance as well (though it is well-written) but you'll have the pleasure of recognizing many of the themes and motifs that will surface and grow in his later, longe
Abdyka Wirmon
Semalam saya bermimpi, mimpi tentang pelabuhan, botol-botol bir, seorang wanita dan tangan-tangan yang saling bergenggaman. bukankah ini tahap yang terindah dari seorang manusia? hidup, mencari jawaban atas dunia, berusaha hidup dalam sebuah arus namun tidak ingin hanyut didalamnya.

Dengarkanlah Nyanyian Angin itulah dia. buku tipis yang telah melengkapi minggu ini dengan sempurna, dia hangat bagai tegukan bir, penuh pengertian bagai seorang kekasih yang tidak banyak bicara, dan cukup tipis untu
This was one of Murakami's very first pieces of writing. My understanding is that it was so hard to find in translation for years because Haruki was not proud of his early attempts at finding his voice. While it is true that it is at times uneven, it still has that unique Murakami spark that got better with Pinball and then solidified and mature with Norwegian Wood and The Wind-up Bird Chronicle.
Aug 17, 2015 Vanessa rated it really liked it
Hooray, another new Murakami book to sink my teeth into! When I say new, I mean newly published as Hear the Wind Sing was Haruki Murakami's first ever published novel, in 1979, and has recently been published with Pinball, 1973 in a new English translation.

This book doesn't really have a plot at such - it follows our narrator who spends his time sitting in his favourite bar with his best friend The Rat, chatting, watching baseball, and pursuing a girl with nine fingers. What I loved about it tho
Nilam Suri
Jul 11, 2010 Nilam Suri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Nilam by: Roos
Shelves: literature
Ini novel Murakami kedua yang saya baca, setelah Norwegian Wood. Dan lagi-lagi saya suka. Ada sesuatu tentang para penulis Jepang yang saya suka, entah itu Yoshimoto atau Murakami (ya referensi saya memang belum banyak). Saya menyukai atmosfer 'kosong' yang ada di tulisan mereka.

Sejauh pengetahuan saya, yang masih minim itu, saya mendapati tokoh2 Murakami sangat 'manusia'. Mereka terasa nyata, karena mereka tidak sempurna. Bahkan tubuh mereka pun tidak kelewatan bagus,atau cantik,atau tampannya.
Nick G
Mar 19, 2010 Nick G rated it liked it
Shelves: to-read-have
I've been on a roll with Murakami for quite a while now. I guess this recent streak could be called a sort of study of one of my favorite authors. Knowing enough about him now, I wanted to see how it all started, even if it did mean paying too much for this short, tiny book (literally the smallest book I've ever read - it fits in my shirt pocket).

Many of the better known Murakami elements are there: the abstractly beautiful feelings that arise from meeting a new girl, beer, bittersweet waves of
Andrew Schirmer
Dec 19, 2012 Andrew Schirmer rated it really liked it
Shelves: japan, translation
"There's no such thing as perfect writing. Just like there's no such thing as perfect despair."

Sounds like Dostoyevsky, but then you'd have to guess again.

I have not a few Japanese comrades who are mystified at the extraordinary popularity of Haruki Murakami abroad. I remain split--some of the stories and novels are tightly wound and deeply affecting, others overindulgent and sprawling.

Count this obscurity as one of the former. My friend Akemi graciously sent a secondhand copy via Japanese Ama
Nov 29, 2015 Osric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
برای خوندنش خیلی دودل بودم، تحقیق کوچیکی کردم دیدم این کتاب اولین کتاب از مجموعه ی چهار جلدی "رت" هست، برای همین کمی تحریک شدم.
شروع به خوندن کردم و فقط 9 صفحه زمان برد که غرق شدم توی همون اشتیاق همیشگی که از خوندن موراکامی بهم دست میداد.
با اینکه این کتاب اولین کتاب این نویسنده هست ولی سبک نوشتاری کاملا خوب و همون طعم کتابای موراکامی رو داره.
داستان کتاب هم، دقیقا از جنس داستان های موراکامیه، خط داستانی های موازی هم و نقش مهم عشق توی داستان، دلدادگی های خاص و روابط عاطفی پیچیده...

خلاصه اینکه کتاب
Patrick McCoy
I was surprised to see Haruki Murakami's Hear The Wind Sing at the bookstore. It is his first novel that was published in English for English language learners by Kodansha in 1987 (it was originally published in Japanese in 1979) I had assumed that it was out of print. It is a thin Japanese sized volume and only 128 pages with Japanese translation notes. Incidentally, his second novel, Pinball 1973, is equally difficult to find.

This novel may have been the precursor to two of his other novels, T
Nabila Tabassum Chowdhury
মুরাকামি আগে পড়া হয়নি, ঠিক করেছি টাইমলাইন ধরে একটা একটা পড়বো। তাই মুরাকামির পরথম লেখা দিয়েই শুরু। মুরাকামি নিজেই বলেছেন এটা তার অপরিপকব সময়ের লেখা।

Hear the Wind Sing...বাতাসের গান শোনো... নামটা সুনদর। কিনতু আমার কাছে বিশেষ কিছু মনে হয়নি। উপনযাসটিতে তেমন কোনও মুল গলপ ছিল না। কিছু চিনতা, কিছু দৃশযপট, কিছু জীবন যাপন এমন ছাড়া ছাড়া কিছু বযাপার। তবুও খারাপ যে লেগেছে এমনও না। হালকা ধরণের লেখা, হালকা ভাবে পড়ে ফেলেছি। মনেও থাকবে না হয়তো কিছুদিন পর এখানে কী পড়েছিলাম।

রেটিং দুটো তারাই দিতাম। বাড়তি একটা তারা
Faroukh Naseem
Dec 22, 2015 Faroukh Naseem rated it really liked it
When I read 1Q84 I was spell bound by the details to which he took me into his so-called 2 moon world.
Yesterday I read Hear the Wind Sing (it’s a pretty small book and mostly short dialogues between the characters)

It’s his first book and you can tell, but at the same time after finishing it I felt it was actually pretty deep (Maybe it is because he is ‘Murakami’) or maybe because it actually is that good.
Very much like Catcher in the Rye with a hint of Fight Club.

It’s the kind of book which woul
Jun 11, 2008 Yulia rated it liked it
It's arrived(!), but . . . it's such a small thing. Who knew some books could still be placed in pockets after all, but of course this I'm taking precious care of, as if it were an inheritance.


After having read this small piece, I'm puzzled why some consider it only a short story. It's a novella, no more or less. Still, I can understand why Murakami and his publishers are in no rush to republish this: it has the depressive flatness and real
Đông Huynh
Jun 15, 2015 Đông Huynh rated it liked it
Shelves: novels
Đây là cuốn sách hay, vì là tiểu thuyết đầu tay nên ko thể trông đợi ở nó một kiệt tác hoặc một cuôn sách hút hồn người đọc theo kiểu Kafka bên bờ biển hay Rừng Na Uy, nhưng nó duyên dáng và văn phong tự nhiên và giản dị.

Người ta đọc những cuốn sách đầu tay của những tác giả lớn để thấy sự hình thành tư tưởng, phong cách và sự phát triển về sau của họ. Tôi đọc cuốn sách này cũng vì tò mò, rằng một nhà văn mình yêu thích thì tác phẩm đầu tay của họ như thế nào? Cuốn sách này hé lộ cho người đọc l
May 11, 2013 Brian rated it really liked it
For Murakami fans, this book has all of the familiar building blocks (Western music, Western literature, beer, mildy neurotic female character, etc.) of his story telling. It's a shame that he doesn't like the book so much that he doesn't want it reprinted in English. For a first book, it is really good.
Quân Khuê
Sep 19, 2015 Quân Khuê rated it really liked it
Tiểu thuyết đầu tay của chàng, giản dị, không chiêu trò như những cuốn về sau, nhưng dư vị thấm thía phết
Nabilah Firdaus
Hear the Wind Sing is the first book by Murakami. It was okay, only okay.
Jun 09, 2014 Josh rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2014
As I know that this is Murakami’s first venture into the world of writing novels or in this case, a novella, I see general ideas and similar characterization for which would eventually become ‘Norwegian Wood’. These include the narrators love for music, his nonchalant whatever type attitude and how he interacts with the opposite sex. I’ve seen people make comments that he cannibalizes his works more than any author and with just a few of the books I’ve read of his, I’m inclined to agree. As rate ...more
Dec 22, 2012 Chinook rated it liked it
Shelves: asia, 1-kindle
I read/heard/made up in a dream that Murakami would prefer no one read his first two books. But lately, for really no reason I can pin down, I've gotten interested in the idea of reading books by authors in order -written or published, I haven't obsessed about the details- and until now hadn't done anything with that idea.

Until I found myself bag-sitting while everyone else was running the NQR hash, under a train bridge at night with a podium someone rescued from the trash and a chair I borrowe
Nov 30, 2016 Fam rated it really liked it
It was good and deeply strange.
Mar 18, 2011 John rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
I just finished reading this book a few days ago. In fact, I've finished it three times in the past couple of weeks.

Hear the Wind Sing is, alas, almost impossible to buy, unless your name is Rockefeller or Gates. My friend from Taiwan raved about it - a Chinese translation - saying it was way better than the author's new stuff (which I like). So I started out looking in libraries, then book stores, then finally Amazon. You can find the only published translation in English there... if you have
Yuu Sasih
Jul 12, 2013 Yuu Sasih rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, adult, about-life
Akhirnya saya impulsif beli buku ini ketika lihat di Gramedia Online kalau buku ini masuk Limited Stock. Lagipula, kapan saya tidak impulsif kalau menyangkut Haruki Murakami?

Dengarlah Nyanyian Angin (Hear The Wind Sing) menceritakan tentang kehidupan Aku, seorang mahasiswa Biologi di salah satu universitas di Tokyo, yang tengah pulang ke kampung halamannya di saat libur semester. Di kampung halamannya, selama 18 hari, Aku menceritakan kisahnya bersama Nezumi, sahabatnya, dan seorang gadis berjar
Mahmud Qayyum
Jan 24, 2013 Mahmud Qayyum rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
(Pertama-tama kudos buat Kedai Hitam kerana tanpa mereka mungkin tiada Haruki M versi Indonesia.)
Ia agak mengujakan membaca Haruki dalam nuansa Nusantara. Namun, saya masih gagal mencari kesimpulan mengapakah empat bintang yang dititip walaupun buku ini tiada ujung pangkalnya.
Beginilah, tunjang sesebuah penceritaan adalah persoalan. Kebanyakkan cerita akan dibuka dengan persoalan yang seterusnya pembaca akan dibimbing untuk mencari jawaban. Akan tetapi, Haruki M membina persoalan itu bukan di a
Ashley Capes
Nov 16, 2016 Ashley Capes rated it liked it
Not the place I'd start if you were looking to get into Murakami, despite most of his favourite themes appearing here :)

Instead, if you're already a fan and curious about his first novel and want to see the original appearance of The Rat, then grab the two-pack that was translated into English last year. The writing is still ace and there's an almost bittersweet feeling to the story (or perhaps 'snapshot' is a better word) that's fairly pleasant.

I still really enjoyed Hear the Wind Sing but I'm
Dec 18, 2014 Joey rated it it was ok
My very first Haruki Murakami's novel. However, it is not as compelling as I expected. It's too enigmatic. I bet this style is what others call "surrealism" -if I am not mistaken. Anyway, I still long to read his other more famous works. I just want to make it as my first stepping stone.

Since I'm keeping up with other books by the end of this year, I just want to say one important idea about this book: As I have read a few Japanese novels, I , therefore, conclude that you can understand the sim
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Haruki Murakami (Japanese: 村上 春樹) is a popular contemporary Japanese writer and translator. His work has been described as 'easily accessible, yet profoundly complex'. He can be located on Facebook at:

Since childhood, Murakami has been heavily influenced by Western culture, particularly Western music and literature. He grew up reading a range of works by Am
More about Haruki Murakami...

Other Books in the Series

The Rat (4 books)
  • Pinball, 1973 (The Rat, #2)
  • A Wild Sheep Chase (The Rat, #3)
  • Dance Dance Dance (The Rat, #4)

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“There's no such thing as perfect writing, just like there's no such thing as perfect despair.” 397 likes
“For example, the wind has its reasons. We just don't notice as we go about our lives. But then, at some point, we are made to notice. The wind envelops you with a certain purpose in mind, and it rocks you. The wind knows everything that's inside you. And not just the wind. Everything, including a stone. They all know us very well. From top to bottom. It only occurs to us at certain times. And all we can do is go with those things. As we take them in, we survive, and deepen.” 73 likes
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