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After Dark

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A sleek, gripping novel of encounters set in Tokyo during the spooky hours between midnight and dawn, by an internationally renowned literary phenomenon.
Murakami's trademark humor, psychological insight, and grasp of spirit and morality are here distilled with an extraordinary, harmonious mastery. Combining the pyrotechnical genius that made "Kafka on the Shore" and "The Wind-up Bird Chronicle" international bestsellers, with a surprising infusion of heart, Murakami has produced one of his most enchanting fictions yet.

At its center are two sisters—Eri, a fashion model slumbering her way into oblivion, and Mari, a young student soon led from solitary reading at an anonymous Denny’s toward people whose lives are radically alien to her own: a jazz trombonist who claims they’ve met before, a burly female “love hotel” manager and her maid staff, and a Chinese prostitute savagely brutalized by a businessman. These “night people” are haunted by secrets and needs that draw them together more powerfully than the differing circumstances that might keep them apart, and it soon becomes clear that Eri’s slumber—mysteriously tied to the businessman plagued by the mark of his crime—will either restore or annihilate her.

After Dark moves from mesmerizing drama to metaphysical speculation, interweaving time and space as well as memory and perspective into a seamless exploration of human agency—the interplay between self-expression and empathy, between the power of observation and the scope of compassion and love. Murakami’s trademark humor, psychological insight, and grasp of spirit and morality are here distilled with an extraordinary, harmonious mastery.

244 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 2004

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About the author

Haruki Murakami

609 books113k followers
Murakami Haruki (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: https://www.facebook.com/harukimuraka...

Since childhood, Murakami has been heavily influenced by Western culture, particularly Western music and literature. He grew up reading a range of works by American writers, such as Kurt Vonnegut and Richard Brautigan, and he is often distinguished from other Japanese writers by his Western influences.

Murakami studied drama at Waseda University in Tokyo, where he met his wife, Yoko. His first job was at a record store, which is where one of his main characters, Toru Watanabe in Norwegian Wood, works. Shortly before finishing his studies, Murakami opened the coffeehouse 'Peter Cat' which was a jazz bar in the evening in Kokubunji, Tokyo with his wife.

Many of his novels have themes and titles that invoke classical music, such as the three books making up The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle: The Thieving Magpie (after Rossini's opera), Bird as Prophet (after a piano piece by Robert Schumann usually known in English as The Prophet Bird), and The Bird-Catcher (a character in Mozart's opera The Magic Flute). Some of his novels take their titles from songs: Dance, Dance, Dance (after The Dells' song, although it is widely thought it was titled after the Beach Boys tune), Norwegian Wood (after The Beatles' song) and South of the Border, West of the Sun (the first part being the title of a song by Nat King Cole).

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 11,960 reviews
Profile Image for Samadrita.
295 reviews4,675 followers
August 1, 2013
Good ol' Murakami.
Every time I read him, I feel my reasons for choosing a book as company over a real person, legitimized again.
What is reading, but, a singular form of one-sided communication? An author sends us an encoded message, crafted with precision and a deep empathy arising out of their understanding of the world and humanity at large. And we, in turn, decode it and instantly feel a pull on the invisible umbilical cord linking us to this person we have never met and, possibly, will never meet. Murakami makes me feel exactly this way. I will never meet him or get to make his acquaintance. But then, don't I know him already?

Few other writers speak to me the way he does. Every time I open a book by him, I feel at home. I let the surrealistic worlds of his creation engulf me in a warm embrace and sweep me away into an unknown abyss of turbulent feelings, darkness and melancholia.

I know I can latch onto his hand and take a walk inside the darkest recesses of my own mind, that I wasn't even aware existed. I know I can let him become my guide, my own personal magician with a wide range of tricks up his sleeve. I know I can nurture an unshakeable faith in the illusions he begets. Because as always, he will unveil the grand truth of the matter in the end and offer enlightenment of a unique kind.

After Dark reinforces this unadulterated, pristine devotion that I feel for this man. Through the bizarre events that a set of individuals go through all in one night, Murakami explores the seedy underbelly of a city and, perhaps, our existence. Love hotel managers, Chinese prostitutes and gangsters, a young college going girl struggling with a vague identity crisis, her beautiful, older sister who lies in a state of perpetual somnolence but doesn't die, an optimistic, young man who plays the trombone in a band, an ordinary office worker who turns violent under the helpful cover of the night - these are the wonderfully strange people he designates as our guides to his kaleidoscopic landscapes.
Like the master of imagery that he is, he creates one seductively beautiful vignette after another and pastes them together into a mesmerizing collage of the collective human consciousness.

He fishes out the soul of a city so bereft of life and substantial movement after the sun has set. He unleashes all the inglorious impulses and unholy emotions that bob up to the surface of our consciousness when the dazzling light of the day is no longer there to help keep them in check and lets us witness how his characters grapple with them. He analyzes and dissects our darkest nocturnal human tendencies with astounding sensitivity. He goes deeper yet and tries to reveal the paradox of dualism in any individual - the stark differences between our daytime selves and darker, nighttime selves and how effortlessly both can co-exist in harmony but are separated by an unbridgeable rift.

I am very much tempted to give this 5 stars but I have seen Murakami deal with more complex themes and create even more staggeringly raw and visceral images with the aid of his powerful writing.
Hence 4 stars it is for now.
Profile Image for Sean Barrs .
1,119 reviews44.8k followers
March 30, 2017
This really isn’t a novel to be rushed. This is a novel to be savoured and appreciated, and I think this quote here captures a large part of the book:

"She reads with great concentration. Her eyes rarely move from the pages of the book- a thick hardback. A bookstore wrapper hides the title from us. Judging from her intent expression, the book might contain challenging subject matter. Far from skimming, she seems to be biting off and chewing it one line at a time.”

The words and the language seem very simple, but there’s much meaning here. This girl is more interested in this book than her surroundings; it is more stimulating that the people around her. The title remains hidden; it’s a suggestion that just because we can see the outside it doesn’t necessarily mean we know what is on the inside. We can observe, and we can see, but we can never truly perceive something in its exact form. This a theme Murakami carries throughout the book.

For example, take the man who abuses the prostitute in the love hotel. He seems like an ordinary man, functional, capable of going to work and able to maintain a relationship. But hidden in the depths of his ordinariness is a secret darkness, a need to hurt people. But what is the need? We never truly know. Surveillance can only tell so much. We know he speaks of a need, but whether or not that is some malevolent desire or a choice he has to make because someone has some leverage over him, we will, again, never actually know.

Night-time Tokyo is captured through a camera lens; it’s forever gazing on the symbolic surface level of the character’s existences, through which Murakami slowly begins to reveal their inner workings. But he never comes to any conclusions. We can only glimpse and peer in. As the hours approach ever closer to dawn, we see a little bit more.

"Between the time the last train leaves and the first train arrives, the place changes: it's not the same as in daytime.”

“Time moves in it special way in the middle of the night.”



We can look at a city at night, and we can see the intertwining threads of existence, but we will never see existence in its full form. So the book takes on an almost movie like feel, akin to something by Quentin Tarantino. Sure, we don’t have the dramatic bursts of action and the spraying blood, but what we do have is conversation. Long drawn out dialogue that reveals much about the characters and how they perceive the world and each other. And it’s intense at times, and it really pulls you into to the story. The exchanges are well written and almost natural in nature. They’ve not been forced on the page.

I did really enjoy this book, but somehow I feel that Murakami can do better. For all the interesting elements here, I know he was purposely holding back for effect. I really do need to read some more of his books, perhaps next time one that has a little more plot.
Profile Image for Ian "Marvin" Graye.
874 reviews2,264 followers
March 3, 2015
Original Review: March 8, 2011

A Midwinter Night's Tale

"After Dark" is probably the easiest Murakami novel to read. At 201 pages, it's not difficult to finish in one session.

It's also close to what you would call "high concept" in the film industry. Its execution is not much more than its conception.

All of the action takes place from 11:56pm to 6:52am on a midwinter night, more or less "after dark" when the days are shortest and the nights are longest.

Hidden Meaning

Murakami's writing is stripped back, simple, present tense, in the style of detective fiction, yet there is always a sense of deeper meaning, even if it is or remains hidden.

We see the surface, almost like a camera, but we know there is something behind it, even if he doesn't choose or have to describe it.

Beware of Darkness

"Darkness" is an extended metaphor throughout the entire novel.

At the most superficial level, it describes the night. However, it also represents the darkness of the human soul.

This level of meaning is most likely to resonate with its likely audience – youth in their teens or early twenties who are still trying to piece together some sense of the meaning of life and how they fit into it.

The Same People, Just a Different Cave

Before people developed the technology to build houses, they huddled together in caves at night, primarily to escape their predators, but also to share their collective warmth.

Darkness then created a sense of family, if not society as well.

Language as a form of communication probably developed during these hours of darkness, when there was little else to do.

Now that we can build accommodation, we create smaller scale, more individualised caves where we can live alone and lonely.

What was once a source of comfort has become a source of alienation.

The Life of Buildings

This spiritual or anti-spiritual life of buildings in Murakami's fiction has been coming for some time.

The homes, office blocks, cafes, bars and hotels in his novels take on a life of their own.

They are characters with their own mysteries that embrace and surround the human characters. They're almost microcosms with their own cosmic significance.

Inside these buildings, we can be easily lured away from interaction with other humans, even the members of our own family.

Sister Feelings Call Again

Mari and her beautiful sister, Eri, are two sides of the one coin (their names are only one syllable apart) that have lost touch with each other.

Eri is at home sleeping a deep sleep that is "too perfect, too pure" and has lasted for two months.

Late in the book, we learn that they once embraced each other for protection in a lift while it remained trapped in darkness in a blackout.

Spiritually, it was the closest they ever came to each other, a return to the comfort of the cave.

Since then, they have drifted apart for no discernible reason.

Metaphorically, they have lost touch, but it's almost as if it is important that they have literally lost "touch" as well.

Close to You

Although Eri never fully regains consciousness during the span of the novel, their reconciliation and sense of wholeness begin when Mari learns to open up personally over the course of meetings with strangers during the night and decides to sleep in Eri's bed, holding her close under the sheets, just as the sun starts to rise and the darkness starts to dissipate.

Open Up and Let Me In

In Murakami's concluding words, "this hint of things to come takes time to expand in the new morning light, and we attempt to watch it unobtrusively, with deep concentration. The night has begun to open up at last."

Throughout the night, we have watched two flowers start to blossom...or, more likely, two shrubs about to re-blossom.

In a sense, they have emerged from the dark and into the light. They are literally "after dark" or post-darkness.

There is a suggestion of a recurring cycle at work here too. Just as day follows night, night follows day.

Darkness Becomes Light, and Light Becomes Darkness

Murakami's very last words are that the hint of things to come will continue to expand in the light, at least "until the next darkness arrives".

This might just mean that we will retreat to our caves at night, pending a new sunrise.

But it could also mean that, all through our lives, we have to deal with darkness and depression, but we have to remember that there will be a new sunrise, especially if we make it happen ourselves.

Is Once a Night Enough?

Someone has suggested that this novel could be the first in a trilogy based around these characters.

There are a myriad of questions that the detective in the reader wants to find answers for.

On the other hand, the metaphorical significance of the novel and its title is complete in one volume.
Profile Image for s.penkevich.
965 reviews6,827 followers
May 10, 2023
Time moves in it special way in the middle of the night

I’ve always loved the night. The way the world morphs into a surreal version of itself as it is emptied out and those still awake feel as if they are tripping through the dreams of those at home in their beds. Darkness also strikes anxiety in people at taps at the fear of the unknown, as if anything could materialize or strike from the shadows. Nighttime is a perfect expression of possibility. There are few who can capture the feeling of the otherworldliness that exists in the cracks of waking reality better than Haruki Murakami, and he harnesses his skills in the sublimely surreal After Dark as if it were his Ulysses of the night. Following two strangers brought together by chance over the course of a single evening, After Dark becomes an odyssey alive under the neon lights and nearly-empty spaces of Tokyo where the boundaries of reality seem permeable and the impossible might be possible. A sister who can’t sleep and another that can’t wake, a man with no face, dangerous gangs and equally dangerous strangers, and the staff of bars, love hotels and an all-night jazz practice populate these quiet hours as their stories intertwine. Deceptively simple, Murakami’s themes hide under a layer of ambiguity, glimpsed as they occasionally surface here and there throughout the narrative and come together like a collage while evading concrete form like a dream or the mysterious worlds that lurk adjacent to reality in his novels. With his signature charm, American pop-culture references, jazz, dynamic symbolism, and—of course—a cat, After Dark is one of Murakami’s best and confronts ideas of identity in the face of society, loneliness, and the ways we can unexpectedly slip through ‘open secret entries into darkness’ at any moment.

Between the time the last train leaves and the first train arrives, the place changes: it's not the same as in daytime.

Between the ages of 18 and 21 when you wanted to be out at night with friends but couldn’t yet go to bars, Denny’s was the place to hang. Which sounds horribly sad in retrospect but upon discovering After Dark begins in a Denny’s as the characters pass into the realm of night, I knew I had to read this (also from reading mj’s wonderful review). My friends and I could always be found in the smoking section with hashbrowns and coffee and it indeed felt like a place where time would bend inexplicably (okay, fine, we were often stoned) and random encounters led to fun conversations. Mari Asai, however, is not interested in random conversation, when she meets the loquacious Takahashi at the start of After Dark yet the chance meeting kicks off a chain of events through the lifecycle of the night. Escaping an odd situation at home, Mari is determined to stay out all night and is led through situations, conversations and existential questions that make a single night feel like an epic voyage. Murakami also shows an incredible empathy between strangers when fate binds them together in unlikely situations, There is a pervasive sense of loneliness to many of the characters we meet, and the night has always seemed the best space to feel lonely with the empty streets and darkened windows seeming like the landscape embodying the emotion. Following several threads through the night that repeatedly separate and collide like a Sally Rooney couple, and told in chapters denoting the time between 11:56 p.m. and 6:52 a.m (a good time period to read the book, to tell the truth) what seems like random events add up to something much more.

Oh and this is Murakami so of course it has jazz and a specific song that seems integral to the story. Here we have Curtis Fuller’s Five Spot After Dark, a song that inspires Takahashi to become a musician and hints at the five locations Mari visits on her journey under dark: Denny’s, the Alphaville hotel, the bar, the Skylark, and the park. Murakami excels at symbolism and we have many of his repeated ones here, such as the moon. While two moons let us know we were in the “other” world in 1Q84 here we have a brief reference to a crescent moon in the western sky at dawn. That doesn’t happen, and it is likely not an error on Murakami’s part but an expression of his reality-adjacent realms. Colors, too, are key, and I’ll get to that shortly. But also with Murakami we can’t escape the inevitable conversation that he can be…on the misogynist side or at least fairly creepy in his depictions of women. And yes, the phrase ‘perfectly shaped breasts’ is used far too often in this story, yet at the same time it features a lot of strong, independent women, surprisingly passes the Bechdel test with flying colors and Takahashi exists to support Mari’s emotional journey and not the other way around (he’s the manic-jazz dream boy perhaps?). Not that this is a feminist work or anything but as far as Murakami goes it's at least much less problematic than most.

The ground we stand on looks solid enough, but if something happens it can drop right out from under you.

Murakami has a gift for examining the ineffable, expressing it less through words but rather pointing our minds through narratives towards those ideas, and After Dark feels one of his most openly examined expressions of his reality-adjacent realms. They always function as multifaceted metaphors in his fiction, where unreality often becomes a better space to understand the “real” and in a way that dissolves the dichotomy between the two. The novel explores themes of duality and interconnectivity, such as night and day, real and otherworldly, and plenty of foil characters, but the theme is best emphasized in the sisters Mari and Eri Asai and their seemingly opposite personalities as well as the fact that Mari is awake all night while Eri has been in a strange state of sleep for over a month.

This is a very cinematic novel, narrated in a way that often calls out the motions a camera shot would make to cover the scenes ‘allowing ourselves to become pure point of view’ as observers to everything. This taps into the interconnectedness and duality as the language of observation seamlessly passes into various characters perspectives or from the “real” into the “unreal” as if a metaphor for how Murakami characters move into these realms in his fiction. This is also expressed by Takahashi:
In other words, I started seeing it like this: that there really was no such thing as a wall separating their world from mine. Or if there was such a wall, it was probably a flimsy one made of papier-mâché. The second I leaned on it, I’d probably fall right through and end up on the other side.

He isn’t speaking directly on the reality-adjacent realms but the lives of other people (though, existentially, isn’t each person a frame of reality unto themselves and so, kind of an alternate reality in a sense?) and how close we are to each other without knowing it. He is also speaking specifically of criminals—his close proximity to one helping inform this—and why observing trials for law school led to this conclusion in a discussion very reminiscent of Tarrou’s epiphany of solidarity against death in The Plague by Albert Camus. In After Dark many of the ideas are threaded across multiple characters or situations (Mari being asked to think of a happy moment with Eri leads to her telling on to Takahashi for instance) and if we are discussing criminals our mind should naturally land on the mysterious gang member who appears throughout the book.

Follow me here. I mentioned color is often symbolic in Murakami, right? The gang member who retrieves the battered sex worker and vows to hunt down her assailant is dressed head to toe in black, and his motorcycle is noted as ‘midnight black.’ This only glimpse into the criminal underworld is a walking symbol of the night, or the darkness that Takahashi says perhaps ‘ has already managed to sneak its way inside of us, and we just haven’t noticed.’ And he appears at random throughout the setting of the novel, at the love hotel, beside the assailant’s cab, and as a disembodied voice over a phone left in a 711—the “otherworld,” the “darkness,” whatever you interpret the “other” to be can reach you anywhere at any time.

Speaking of color, look at how telling it is in other characters. We had Mari who is dressed mostly in black except for her fading yellow shoes—a symbol of her fading happiness waning under her frustrated relationship with her sister. At the end of the novel she checks to make sure they are still clear, a sign the journey has ended and she has arrived unscathed. But in her final scene it is noted she has white socks and a white tshirt underneath, further symbolizing that the darkness has not penetrated into her. Mari’s eyes are also said to be a ‘lonely hue,�� reflective of her character. Eri, who is referred to both as Sleeping Beauty and Snow White throughout the novel (read: white) is depicted primarily in black and white: her black hair and the constant reference to pale skin and her room is all blacks and whites. She is also traveling between the real and “unreal” of the mysterious broadcast her body is transported into presumably by the faceless man. This feels adjoining to the Alphaville references, which is the name of the love hotel that we learn may be a reference to the black and white Godard film of the same name in which people are not allowed to feel feelings (Takahashi refers to Eri’s pill popping and other struggles as her being trapped in her own sort of Alphaville). Shirakawa, the lonely IT engineer who beats up the sex worker, who in all greys, and exhibiting loneliness and a general lack of emotion also figuratively places him like a character in the black and white Alphaville. We can even notice silver seeming to be the link between “realities,” with the silver pencil of Shirakawa’s company appearing in both and the silver phone being the link to the symbolic character of the night: the gang member. Further note that the cat Mari feeds and cares for in the park is white, symbolic of her caring nature to the Snow White Eri and the sex worker whom she helps, also described as pale skin and black hair, making her a foil character to Eri as they are both victimized. Shirakawa is essentially the foil to Mari then, giving abuse and detachment (especially to his family) in place of empathy.

Similar to the way color is indicative to character and personality, Murakami's attention to light is often his way of expressing a feeling about each location of the novel. The type of lighting is often referenced, from the warm neon of dreamier locations to the sterility of florescent lamps in offices, and the lighting is used to set the tone in many ways. Also we see how light is much more significant in spaces where there is not much of it, as if the rarity of light makes it more special and meaningful in the realm of the night.

Of what value is a civilization that can't toast a piece of bread as ordered?

Social criticism are also highly thematic here. So much plays into the way society churns people up into objects, into marketing data and consumers, and other symbols of dehumanization. Takahashi speaks of an unstoppable symbolic sea monster, like a massive octopus, that is ‘ 'the nation,' and sometimes it's 'the law,' and sometimes it takes on shapes that are more difficult and dangerous than that.’ He says ‘this creature, this thing doesn't give a damn that I'm me or you're you. In its presence, all human beings lose their names and their faces. We all turn into signs, into numbers.’ It all feels a very strong metaphor of capitalism, of the ways we are faceless data points making up a society. He adds:
What I mean to say is probably something like this: any single human being, no matter what kind of person he or she may be, is all caught up in the tentacles of this animal like a giant octopus, and is getting sucked into the darkness. You can put any kind of spin on it you like, but you end up with the same unbearable spectacle.

Our lives are churned up into a The Society of the Spectacle, but the aquatic metaphor persists elsewhere too. When Eri wakes up in the stranger “otherworld,” her space is described as being like a fishbowl. She is a spectacle due to her beauty, but it is like being a fish in a tank, isolated and on display. This is further emphasized by her appearing within the tv, not unlike a fishbowl. In the realm of night, we all seem small and faceless, like fish in a fishbowl, ‘in the eyes of society at large, that world of mine is a puny little thing,’ and the water metaphor appears throughout the novel.

In this world, there are things you can only do alone, and things you can only do with somebody else. It's important to combine the two in just the right amount.

Perhaps, however, there is a brighter side to this observation that, in fact, we are all a small part of a larger society. We can either bemoan this and be violent, like Shirakawa, or choose empathy and cooperation, like Mari. We are each ‘a human being with a different face and mind, and at the same time each is a nameless part of the collective entity,’ Murakami muses in the narration, ‘each is simultaneously a self-contained whole and a mere part.’ What is society but a collection of individuals? Within each is a cosmos of dreams, desires, and fears, each putting up our walls that might be more fragile and thinner than we know. With this realization of another duality in the novel, the cycle completes, day breaks, and life returns.

'I am me and not me.'

I love the ambiguities in After Dark, and the way it all reads as highly interpretable. Murakami doesn’t often tie up all loose ends and leaves much to us to decide what it means, allowing the messages of the otherworld to resist definite form because, simply, they are not of this reality but only guideposts towards meaning. ‘No one answers our questions,’ he writes, which is true of much of life, ‘our question marks are sucked, unresisting, into the final darkness and uncompromising silence of the night.’ I tend to enjoy this aspect of his books, it lets the story linger in a haze of mystery and multi-faceted meaning with many of the symbols having a duality to them. The novel feels it reaches a resolution (being more an emotional conclusion than anything having completed the narrative discourse on the themes), but the mystery remains at large, something you can almost grasp the more you look at it but can never quite line all points up in a tidy fashion. After Dark nails a lot of sweet spots for me and is easily one of my favorite of his books, and is fairly succinct as far as he goes. The themes are also teased out in many of his other novels, making them sort of variations on a scale across his oeuvre like a jazz record. After Dark examines the dualities and interconnectedness that we feel deep down as an itch of consciousness, and is a heartfelt and lovely voyage through the surrealness of night showing empathy as a life-raft through it all.


The old temporality is losing its effectiveness and moving into the background. Many people go on mumbling the old words, but in the light of the newly revealed sun, the meanings of words are shifting rapidly and are being renewed. Even supposing that most of the new meanings are temporary things that will persist only through sundown that day, we will be spending time and moving forward with them.
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,564 reviews26 followers
October 23, 2021
(アフターダーク = Afutā Dāku = After Dark, Haruki Murakami

After Dark is a 2004 novel by Japanese author Haruki Murakami.

Set in metropolitan Tokyo over the course of one night, characters include Mari Asai, a 19-year-old student, who is spending the night reading in a Denny's.

There she meets Takahashi Tetsuya, a trombone-playing student who loves Curtis Fuller's "Five Spot After Dark" song on Blues-ette; Takahashi knows Mari's sister Eri, who he was once interested in, and insists that the group of them have hung out before.

Meanwhile, Eri is in a deep sleep next to a television and seems to be haunted by a menacing figure. ...

عنوانهای چاپ شده در ایران: «پس از تاریکی»؛ «بعد از تاریکی»؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز هشتم ماه آوریل سال 2005میلادی

عنوان: پس از تاریکی - ترجمه از متن انگلیسی، نویسنده: هاروکی موراکامی، مترجم: مهدی غبرائی؛ تهران، کتابسرای نیک؛ سال1387، در191ص؛ چاپ سوم سال1388؛ در191ص؛ شابک9789642953219؛ چاپ هفتم: مشهد، نیکوفر، سال1393؛ در190ص؛ شابک9789647253017؛
موضوع: داستانهای کوتاه از نویسندگان ژاپن - سده 21م

عنوان: بعد از تاریکی، نویسنده: هاروکی موراکامی، مترجم: علی حاجی قاسم؛ تهران، نگاه، سال1387، چاپ بعدی سال1391؛ در198ص؛ شابک9789643517045؛

نقل از کتاب
وقتی یه بار یتیم شدی، تا وقتی بمیری یتیمی
شاید آدم باید واقعا بمیره تا بفهمه چطوریه
خاطرات مردم، شاید مثل مواد سوختی باشه، که میسوزونن تا زنده باشن
یک روزی آدم دلخواهت را پی��ا میکنی ماری، و یاد میگیری که باید اعتماد به نفس بیشتری داشته باشی. من این طور فکر میکنم. پس کمتر از اینو قبول نکن
ماری: ولی چرا باید به من علاقه داشته باشی؟
تاکاهاشی: سوال خوبی هست در حال حاضر خودم هم جوابش رو نمیدونم. اما شاید-فقط شاید-اگه باهم باشیم حرف بزنیم، پس از مدتی یه چیز مثل موسیقی متن فرانسیس لای در پس زمینه پخش میشود؛ و از جایی نامعلوم یک خروار دلیل مشخص روی سرمان میریزد؛ که چرا به تو علاقه دارم
اگر بخت به ما رو کند، شاید برف هم برایمان ببارد
پایان نقل

ماجرای یک دختر هجده، نوزده ساله به نام «ماری» است،‏ که خواهری بزرگتر از خود د��رد؛ دو خواهر تفاوتهایی باهم دارند؛ مثلا اینکه خواهر بزرگتر که نامش «اِری» است، دختری خوشگل است، که برای مجله‏ های مُد کار می‏کند، اما خواهر کوچکتر معمولی است؛ دو ماه پیشتر، یک روز «اِری» به خانواده ‏اش می‏گوید که من خیلی خسته ام، و می‏خواهم بخوابم؛ و پس از گذشت دو ماه، او هنوز از خواب بیدار نشده است؛ ماجرا از ساعت11:56، شب آغاز می‏شود، که «ماری» خسته و کلافه، از خواب طولانی خواهر، تا صبح در خیابان‏های «توکیو» پرسه می‏زند؛ عنوان هر فصل یک زمان است؛ فصل نخست 11:56قبل از نیمه شب، و تا فصل پایان که 6:52پس از نیمه شب است، که «ماری» به خانه برمی‏گردد؛

نقل از کتاب: (- به فکر نیافتادید برای آزمایش ببریدش به یک بیمارستان؟ «پدر و مادرم سعی می‏کنند خوشبینانه ترین نظرگاه را داشته باشند؛ عقیده دارند خواهرم هرچه بخواهد می‏خوابد و یک روز انگار نه انگار چیزی شده بیدار می‏شود، و همه چیز به حالت عادی برمی‏گردد؛ آنها به این امکان چسبیده ‏اند؛ اما من طاقت ندارم؛ یا بهتر بگویم، گهگاه طاقتم طاق می‏شود، از اینکه زیر یک سقف با خواهرم به سر برم، و سر درنیاورم که چرا دو ماه، نیمه جان است»؛ - پس از خانه درمی‏آیی و شب‏ها خیابان گز می‏کنی؟ ماری می‏گوید: «فقط خوابم نمی‏برد؛ وقتی زور می‏زنم، تنها فکر و خیالم این است که خواهرم تو اتاق بغلی آن جور خوابیده؛ حالم که بد می‏شود، دیگر نمی‏توانم چاردیواری خانه را تحمل کنم»؛ - دو ماه، هان؟ مدت زیادی است؛ «ماری» سری به تایید می‏جنباند؛ «کوروگی» می‏گوید: «البته من که از موضوع سر درنمیآورم، اما به نظرم می‏رسد خواهرت لابد مشکل بزرگی دارد، که نمی‏تواند از پسش برآید، چیزی که نمی‏تواند دست تنها حلش کند؛ بنابراین فقط دلش می‏خواهد برود تو رختخواب و بخوابد، تا از دنیای مادی دور باشد؛ به نظرم از احساسش سر درمی‏آورم یا بهتر است بگویم دقیقا می‏دانم احساسش چی است.) پایان نقل

یک داستان بلند است؛ داستان از ساعت دوازده نیمه شب به بعد، و در «توکیو» روایت میشود؛ ماجرای دختری که به دلیل بیخوابی کارش قدم زدن در شهر، و رفتن به «کافی شاپ»هاست، و در این راه با حقایق و واقعیتهای جالبی از زندگی انسانها روبرو میشود، و به نوعی در روابط پیچیده ی آدمهای اطرافش گم میشود؛ ماجرای پرسه زدن این دختر، در طول یک شب در «توکیو»، دستمایه ی اصلی داستان رمان است.؛ تو گویی زنهای گمشده در آثار «موراکامی» تصویری تکراری هستند؛ «موراکامی» میگوید: «در زندگی من چند دختر ناپدید شده اند، و چند دختر نیز از من جدا نمیشوند؛ دوستانی داشته ام، که از من جدا شده، بعضی خود را کشته اند، و برخی ناپدید شده اند؛ دوست دارم چیزی در باره ی آنها بنویسم، اما اگر در باره ی آدمهای عادی بنویسم که لطفی ندارد؛ لذت نوشتن ساختن شخص و شخصیت است».؛

بی تردید جانمایه ی داستانهای «موراکامی» فقدان است، و از سویی فانی بودن زندگی را روایت میکند؛ به گفته «کازوئو ایشیگورو» داستانهای «موراکامی» مالیخولیا را در زندگی طبقه متوسط میکاود

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 24/08/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 30/07/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Emma.
108 reviews52.6k followers
June 11, 2020
"...the city looks like a single gigantic creature - or more like a single collective entity created by many intertwining organisms. Countless arteries stretch to the ends of its elusive body...to the rhythm of its pulsing, all parts of the body flicker and flare up and squirm. Midnight is approaching, and while the peak of activity has passed, the basal metabolism that maintains life continues undiminished" (3).

"Everything, finally, unfolded in a place resembling a deep, inaccessible fissure. Such places open secret entries into darkness in the interval between midnight and the time the sky grows light. None of our principles have any effect there. No one can predict when or where such abysses will swallow people, or when or where they will spit them out" (215).
Profile Image for BookHunter محمد.
1,430 reviews3,346 followers
October 24, 2022

إن ذكريات الأشخاص ربما هي الوقود الذي يحرقونه حتى يظلوا على قيد الحياة. و سواء كانت هذه الذكريات ذات أهمية أم لا فإن ذلك لا يهم طالما أن الأمر يتعلق باستمرارية الحياة. فهي كلها وقود. فإذا كان لديك مطويات دعائية في صحيفة و كتب في الفلسفة و صور جنسية من مجلات و رزمة من فئة العشرة آلاف ين ثم ألقيت بها جميعا في النار. فإنها تصبح كلها مجرد ورق. و النار لا تفكر حتى تقول: آه. هذا كانط. أو: آه. هذه هي الطبعة المسائية من صحيفة يوميوري. أو صور مؤخرات جميلة و هي تحرقها. إنه الشيء نفسه تماما. الذكريات المهمة و الذكريات غير المهمة جميعها معدومة الجدوى و ليس ثمة فرق بينهما فكلها مجرد وقود.
أعتقد لو أنه لو لم يكن لديّ ذلك الوقود و لو لم يكن لديّ تلك الأدراج من الذكريات لكنت انفجرت منذ زمن طويل. كنت سأتكوم في حفرة و في مكان ما ثم أموت. لكن بفضل قدرتي على استعادة الذكريات من الأدراج كلما تعين عليّ ذلك. سواء كانت ذكريات مهمة أو غير مهمة فإنني أستطيع أن أعيش ذلك الكابوس الذي يسمى الحياة.
كالنور و الظلام كانتا إيري و ماري. تشكلان شيئا واحدا قبل أن تتباعدا رويدا رويدا لتشكلا ثنائي لا يتلاقى أبدا. فما أن يتواجد أحدهما حتى يختفي الأخر.
و لكن تلك كانت أخر مرة. تلك كانت .... كيف لي أن أسمي ذلك؟ ... اللحظة الوحيدة التي تلاحمنا معا قلبا لقلب لنصبح جسدا واحدا: لم يكن هناك شيء يفصلنا. بعد ذلك يبدو أننا تباعدنا أكثر و أكثر. انفصلنا. و منذ مدة طويلة بدأنا نعيش في عالمين مختلفين. ذلك الإحساس بالإتحاد الذي شعرته في عتمة المصعد. و ذلك الرباط القوي بين قلبينا لم يعاودني أي منهما مرة ثانية. لست أدري أين الخلل. و لكننا لم نستطع قط أن نعود إلى النقطة التي بدأنا منها.
و ماذا بعد الظلام إلا النور مرة أخرى في دورة تراتبية توشك أن تنتهي. غرائبية أخرى من عجائب موراكامي.
Profile Image for Stephen M.
137 reviews621 followers
February 3, 2012
"Eye's mark the shape of the city"

There is something about Murakami that ignites connections in my brain that I don't know what to do with. Such as the scene with the man on a television screen staring into a real room with a girl lying on the bed. He is said to be looking in from the "other side". Murakami uses this same phrase when a main character is looking into a mirror. When she gazes at herself in the mirror she is said to be looking in from the "other side". There are several scenes which beg for some kind of interpretation because they connect in some kind of way. So I tried my best to link two major ideas that struck me at first.

This book seemed to me to occupy itself with the phenomena of observance. His comparisons of the narrative lens to an actual camera lens is obvious. His prose even reflects that of a screenplay. Most chapters start with a sentence fragment of the location (like a screenplay Int. Denny's or what have you). The book is heavy on the dialogue and it's in the present tense. Obviously the idea of a screenplay informing the way we see a movie is being drawn into this story.

Another major idea stemmed from an argument of the effects of such observance upon the subject being observed, "eye's mark the shape of the city". I felt the usage of the first-person plural, (i.e. "we see this... now we move into this place") was an argument for how the book itself smashes a world into a single view. As if there are these multiple people trying to look into this world, but we are restricted to the author's single view of the world. So he uses we to refer to our collected view into this world.

As you can see, these were all very abstract and loose interpretations. I tried my best to develop it. I went to town on the first 50 pages with a pen, but slowly the book slipped away from the analytical side of my brain. I somewhat accepted that I wasn't going to understand every last supernatural detail or musing in this book. Instead, I let the mood and feelings evoked within guide me through it.

In interviews, Murakami often discusses his writing style. He calls it "dreaming". He will wake up at early hours of the morning to "dream" into the page, then he goes to a strictly regimented routine of running and other daily chores. He sees this repetition and "dreaming" as a way to mine into the inner recesses of the subconscious.

There is something beautiful about this in my opinion. This way in which Murakami delves into this type of writing always stimulates emotion from within me. It is like a dream where you wake up and can't really describe anything that has happened to yourself, yet you are undeniably left with a deep, pensive attitude superseding all of the quotidian aspects of the morning.

I like that Murakami does that to me.

I like that he connects two completely unrelated things that I can never make much sense out of.

I most certainly recommend this book. The only thing keeping me from five stars is the fact that it feels incomplete in its shortness. And not enough of it comes together in a similar fashion as The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle.

Nonetheless, it is powerful stuff. I'm a fan.

Prose style: 4
Plot: 3
Depth of characters: 4
Overall sense of aesthetic: 5
Originality: 5
Entertaining: 3
Emotional Reaction: 5
Intellectual Stimulation: 5
Social Relevance: 3
Writerly Inspiration: 4

Average = 4.1
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Profile Image for emma.
1,868 reviews54.5k followers
September 13, 2023
turns out none of my rules (e.g., short books are better, misogyny is a hard no, i can only read like 1 lengthy fantasy novel per year) apply to murakami.

this was fine, but had none of the surreal magic that murakami usually does for me.

but a lot of the woman stuff.

so not ideal.

bottom line: sure fine whatever!
Profile Image for Matthias.
107 reviews351 followers
March 24, 2017
I wake up.

My room bathes in the light of the streetlamp. I’m too tired to look around. I close my eyes again but soon feel in my heart that the darkness I so desire has fled. It hides under my bed, in the corners of the city and of my mind. It refuses to manifest itself in its most majestic and generous form, that of the great blanket that covers the waking world, that of the wide gate that allows passage to the land of dreams. The splashes of darkness only serve to irritate me in their small portions. I open my eyes, flip the switch and welcome the light in its hostile splendour.

I’m not thirsty. I’m not hungry. I’m tired but unwilling to try to sleep, unwilling to fight a battle that I’ve already lost.


Milk never quenches my thirst, it never stills my hunger, but I always have some in my fridge. It soothes me on a level that is neither nutritional or hydrating. Milk is said to strengthen the bones, but I sense that it softens me. Milk will manage to soften the hard edges of this sleepless night.

My feet are cold as I make my way to the fridge. The floor hasn’t been cleaned in a little while and I feel small grains of cluttered dust, sand and crumbles cling to the soles of my feet. I rub them off and feel a slight disgust with both myself and the floor. I tip-toe the rest of the way and I feel better.

The fridge is empty. No milk. No water. No produce. The light, my nemesis of the night, luxuriates in this deserted white scenery as a victorious conqueror. I close the door in displeasure but in the speed of the movement I see a flash of darkness. I open the door again and notice a black book sitting on the middle shelf. Wondering how it got there and how I missed it before, I pick it up.

"After Dark", by Haruki Murakami.

Even though my feet still feel dirty, I slip back into bed and start reading. The mood is palpable from the first sentence onwards and I’m taken away into a scenery where sympathetic darkness prevails, allowing glimpses into its secrets. Mirrors, shadows, cats and dead television sets become gateways to another world. It’s a world of mysterious questions to which tuna sandwiches, a set of sharpened pencils, a trombone and a baseball cap are its incomprehensible but valid answers.

Conversations glean additional significance from the darkness that surrounds them. Everyday objects become laden with meaning. I am close to understanding the night, as I feel it both within the pages and within me.

I wake up.
Profile Image for Steven  Godin.
2,492 reviews2,372 followers
July 14, 2022

Atmosphere. It's all about the atmosphere here. And we're talking the Lynchian kind.
I have always had a fascination with the thought of major city's during the hours of night and one of those would be Tokyo. But not necessarily for what you can see; like huge neon signs, the hustle and bustle of clubs, bars, food joints and people making there why home. No, it's what you can't see that intrigues me more. As somewhere out there in the dead of night there is a whole other world going on that gives me the creeps. One of hidden menace and strange occurrences. And this is exactly the feelings that Murakami conjures up in this intriguing, surreal and hypnotic tale. Set over the course of a single night with central themes of alienation and longing in a vast metropolis involving two young sisters, a musician, the employee of a love hotel, and an office night worker who has committed a vicious assault. I like the fact there are unexplained events happening that are never answered; where Murakami has put the reader in a dream-like trance. Not plot or character driven, but the heavy atmosphere really did have a hold over me.
Profile Image for Mohamed Khaled Sharif.
816 reviews919 followers
January 16, 2023
الأدب الياباني عموماً من خلال قراءتي في أكثر من موضوع فهو من النوع المُعقد والمليء بالتساؤلات والإستفسارت التي تحتاج إلى إجابات شافية..
أول عمل أقرأه للعظيم هاروكي موراكامي.. وفضلت أن أبتعد عن "كافكا على الشاطئ".. وقررت البدء بعمل إلى حداً ما مقبول لهاروكي.

الرواية عُبارة عن دوامة من المناقشات.. يستدرجك "هاروكي" بأسلوبه البارع في جعل الفسيخ شربات.. لكي تهتم بقضايا أنت فى الأصل لا تُعيرها أي اهتمام لو ذكرت أمامك في أي مكان.. الرواية تُعتبر دليل لعادات وتقاليد اليابان.. من شدة إتقان الوصف لهاروكي في بعض الاحيان شعرت أنني في اليابان أتجول في شوارعها.. أيضاً يُذكر لهاروكي أنه قد قام بإظهار السلبيات في اليابان بكل جراءة.. لم يُخبر نفسه أنه بهذه الطريقة سوف يُضر البلد أو يُصدر سمعة سيئة عنها وكل هذا الكلام الغير مفيد والغير صحيح.. أفضل الطرق للتغيير هو الطريق الصعب دائماً.. في اليابان يوجد من يرموا القمامة في الشارع، يوجد بلطجية ويوجد تفكك أسري ويوجد ويوجد.. اليابان ليست يوتوبيا.. ولكن الفارق.. أن مقابل كل ياباني فاسد.. عشرين صالحين يساعدون على رقي بلدهم.. على نقيضنا.. بالإضافة إلى هوايتنا فى إظهار أقذر ما فينا.

أكثر من آثر في هي ماري.. بحيرتها الدائمة وتخبطها الملازم لها.. تُريد أن تعرف وأن تستقر.. فعرفت وأستقرت وفهمت..
بعض الأشياء لم أفهمها جيداً.. ولها مغزى لم أتمكن من الوصول له.. رُبما لو قرأتها مرة آخرى سأتمكن من فهمها.
تنقل الرواية بسلاسة حياة تلك الكائنات الليلية الذي ربما نكون نحن منهم كيف يعيشون وماذا يفعلون في آواخر الليل؟
الرواية بها بعض الرسائل الرائعة.

لم أشعر بملل في الرواية مُطلقاً.. وعندما انتهت الرواية تعجبت أنني كيف لم اشعر بالملل في الرواية؟ الأسلوب أهم من القصة في بعض الأحيان.
Profile Image for Fabian.
956 reviews1,623 followers
March 5, 2020
Clearly his efforts are becoming more and more of a nuisance--because you must read his entire body of work, you need to trudge through latter stuff, like this one, Verrrry Minor Murakami*.

The best thing? The open-endedness in some of the various hallucinations/tableaux. The most irritating? His one page-per American reference, and the halo to the Japanese master of All (Crap!) Things USA.

*newly discovered literature genre (c.a. 2016)
Profile Image for Michael.
1,094 reviews1,538 followers
December 11, 2015
A delightful excursion into the mentality and rhythms of night in the city and the perspectives it gives to the meaning of our daytime lives. This 2007 novel contains the essence of Murikami’s weird and wonderful ways in a pure and restrained form. We fly around observing a set of characters as with an invisible camera, neutral and unjudging. Time ticks down explicitly through the night though the pacing of life at night has a timeless quality. The characters actions are muted and reflective, their lives pregnant with unfulfilled potential. Murakami conjures up night and day as separate worlds, mirrors as windows between self and other, TV screens as doorways into alternative lives, and memory as a fuel to banish the nightmares of life with its light.

The plot elements are fairly simple and insignificant in themselves. The pleasure of the story lies in the elegance their rendering and their evocative powers over our emotions and imagination. Young Mari can’t sleep and passes the time reading at an all-night Denny’s. She is worried about her sister, Eri, a model who has disappeared for a long time into sleep. We visit the sister for time to time as she sleeps, oblivious to some ominous activity that we see mysteriously appear on her unplugged TV screen. A former friend of Eri’s, Takahashi, arrives at the Denny’s and engages Mari in conversation, breaking through her reserve with his innocent and kind nature. He goes off to practice as a trombone player in a jazz band. Mari gets involved in translating for a Chinese prostitute at a “love hotel” who has been beaten and robbed by her client. She befriends the lady manager and a maid at the hotel and has some philosophical discussions with them. Later she catches up with Takahashi at his music practice and over breakfast they consolidate a future for their friendship as a new day dawns and the daytime people replace those of the night.

Mari and Takahashi’s goodness and innocence contrasts with the evil brutality of the john and tough life experiences of the staff at the love hotel. The hotel is called Alphaville, which Takahashi recalls was the name of a Godard movie and explains the irony of its name to Mari:
Well, for example, if you cry in Alphaville, they arrest you and execute you in public.
‘Cause in Alphaville, you’re not allowed to have deep feeling. So there’s nothing like love. No contradictions, no irony. They do everything according to numerical formulas.

The other evil our heroes seem to counter is in the way people get disconnected in our modern civilization. The metaphor of Esi’s sleep relates to the her estrangement from Mari from the time in their childhood when Esi’s beauty put her on a track of popularity and modeling and inability to really listen to people ever after. In the process, Mari became the ugly duckling and took the track to shyness and loneliness and, to the benefit, an empathetic reflective personality. I love how Takahashi explains here how Esi’s effective disappearance haunts him:

”…the more time goes by, the stronger it gets, like, I’m not even here: I’m not included in what’s going on here. She’s sitting right there in front of me, but at the same time she’s a million miles away.
Finally, no matter what I say, it doesn’t reach her. This layer, like some kind of transparent sponge kind of thing, stands between Eri Asai and me, and the words that come out of my mouth have to pass through it, and when that happens, the sponge sucks up almost all of the nutrients right out of them. She’s not listening to anything I say—not really. The longer we talk, the more clearly I can see what’s happening. So then the words come out of her mouth stop making it all the way to me. It was a very strange feeling.”

It’s a paradoxical thrill how Murakami invites the reader in as a shared observer with the narrator, encouraging emotional identification of heroes and villains, while at the same time enforcing the rule of no participation or intervention with his tale. And if you have questions, you can experience him putting up a hand when he says things like:
No one answers our questions. Our question marks are sucked, unresisting, into the final darkness and uncompromising silence of the night.

All delicious fun and inspiration for me. At the boundary of day in this book, I felt like was waking from a dream as illustrated in these favored fragments:
The new day is almost here, but the old one is still dragging its heavy skirts. Just as ocean water and river water struggle against each other at a river mouth, the old time and the new time clash and blend.

A cycle has been completed, all disturbances have been resolved, perplexities have been concealed, and things have returned to their original state. Around us, cause and effect join hands, and synthesis and division maintain their equilibrium.

The wonderful feelings I came away with in this book remind me of those I was let with after collusion with the narrator in “Midsummer Night’s Dream”, with the fly-on-the-wall observer in Maupin’s “Tales of the City”, and the with the framer behind the saga in the Moody Blues album “Days of Future Past.” Quite a sparkling gem for me.
Profile Image for Reading_ Tamishly.
4,452 reviews2,402 followers
February 25, 2023
This is most probably my second least favourite by Murakami.

The story seems really unfinished. Open ending definitely redefined I guess. But I feel like the book has reached just halfway when it ended.
The whole concept of the book seems weird to be. But again it's a Murakami book. The story was just picking up when it ended all of a sudden. Even if it was a short story I would still feel the same. So many things are left in the dark. I needed more details or explanations towards the end or somewhere in between in order to come to my own conclusions even if there's no proper ending but I feel like there's none.

The book started slow and it kept on being real slow in the first half. The writing really picked up in the second half. But I feel like the story is so incomplete. Wanting for more from a story is one thing but not getting much from a story regarding the characters or the plot is something I really don't want from a book.

Nevertheless I enjoyed the book while reading it because of the way the writing kept hinting of explanations regarding the different characters and the situations they were in.

But I seriously don't want to recommend this book.
Profile Image for Bob Lopez.
771 reviews35 followers
February 28, 2008
I didn't like the book very much. It read like something he tossed off, like it was a book between books, like a book to satisfy a contractual obligation: the literary equivalent of a B-sides collection, or maybe a greatest hits collection, only not very good.

There wasn't anything very compelling about the characters. They were wooden, and not very fleshed out, like vaguely romanticized caricatures.

The narrative suffered--I'm guessing--because of the translation; there were details here and there that sort of pulled me out of the story to wonder how true they were: the main girl, a book-reading, chain-smoking, Godard-loving 19 year old, hangs out at Denny's--in Japan, although plausible, is it likely? It doesn't matter because every time it came up, I'd wonder the same thing; also, the girl wears a baseball cap (which I buy b/c baseball is huge in Japan), but it's a Red Sox cap (which I don't buy, b/c, even though baseball is huge in Japan, they have THEIR OWN TEAMS). How hard would that have been...to give her a cap w/ a Japanese team's logo? It's bad translating, unless Murakami wrote it in the original, too, which would speak more about his cultural and financial opportunism (how will this sell in the States, perhaps?) than the affected "disaffected teenager" he was creating.

The translation may also have something to do with the fact that the novel reads like a poorly written, adolescent's graphic novel, particular the psuedo-romance that sort-of blossoms between two late-teens characters. The dialog is bad enough in some instances that it pulled me from the story to consider its plausibility...

Here's some sample thought-dialog, by the book-reader's intellectually opposite and inferior older sister:

For some reason, a different kind of reality has taken the place of my normal reality. Wherever it might have been brought from, whoever might have carried me here, I have been left shut up entirely alone in this strange, dusty, viewless room with no exit. Could I have lost my mind and, as a result, been sent to some kind of institution? After all, who gets to bring her own bed along when she enters the hospital? And besides this simply doesn't look like a hospital room. Neither does it look like a prison cell. It's just a big, empty room.

Who in the world talks like this? Who in the world thinks like this? The book expects us to buy it, however. But in complete sentences? In complete paragraphs? And, let's not forget that the thinker of these thoughts is young, at most in her early twenties. As the narrative clearly establishes, she is poorly-schooled, and actually so pretty she's a model which caused her to further neglect her studies. And yet, you want me to believe she can think like this after just waking up in what is apparently a place she does not recognize? I know it's set in Japan, and I know the stereotypes about disciplined schooling in Japan, but c'mon...it reads entirely disingenuous.

It's cold, and it sounds like a paper: Could I have lost my mind and, as a result, been sent to some kind of institution? Yeah, the grammar asylum.

There was an interesting device employed by the narrative: first-person camera narration, with tracking, zooms, close-ups, and phrases like "We turn the camera..." and "We pull in to see..." Maybe that's second person camera...I don't know...
Profile Image for Janelle.
1,216 reviews166 followers
February 21, 2021
This was an hypnotic and dreamy novel with a cinematic vision and I loved it! I was drawn into this book immediately and it creates a feeling of being awake while most others are asleep, that kind of feeling that time moves differently in the early hours of the morning.
Set in the hours between midnight and dawn the story opens with the view from above a city and sweeps in to focus on a young woman in a cafe. This is Mari. We( and it is we, often the narrator reminds the reader that we are just witnesses and cant act within the story) are introduced to a variety of characters, people awake for various reasons and one character asleep, Mari’s sister Eri who announced about two months earlier that she was going for a little sleep and no one has seen her awake since.
There’s wonderful imagery, people’s faces remaining in the mirror after they’ve left the room, links between scenes via the same tv program or different people answering a phone that has been left in the milk section of the fridge in a 7-eleven. There’s a hotel named Alphaville and I have instant visions of that dystopic ‘60s film. And there’s stories within stories as different characters confide in each other.
It seems to be about loneliness and isolation and alienation from people you’re supposed to be close to as well as society in general.
But this is Murakami so I could be wrong and I have no idea what the faceless man in the tv represented and I will always wonder what book was Mari reading...
Profile Image for Katie.
273 reviews3,840 followers
July 25, 2017

Video review will be up Wednesday :)
Profile Image for Sherif Metwaly.
467 reviews3,509 followers
May 9, 2016

أنا اللّى أعرفه .. إن الروايات بتبقى حاجة من اتنين
إما الرواية تكون جميلة وبديعة وفيها حاجة حلوة تعجبك وتخليك تكملها للآخر
يا إما الرواية تكون سيئة ومتعجبكش أو متفهمهاش
وبالتالى متكملهاش أو تكملها لو قادر تصبر عليها وتنتقدها نقد كامل فى النهاية

ولكن هنا
رواية ممتعة ، ساحرة ، فيها حاجة تجبرك انك ماتسبهاش متعرفش ازاى
بالرغم من أنك مش فاهم حاجة؟
أو بمعنى أدق ، فيه غموض فى حاجات معينة انت مش فاهمه
مزيج غريب وعجيب ومدهش
وبالرغم من انك مش فاهم لحد النهاية ومفهمتش فى النهاية
لاتملك إلا أن تقول .. الرواية دى مجنونة فعلاً
وأعتقد إنى مش لوحدى فى وجهة النظر دى
لأنى بعد انتهائى من الرواية وجدت على الغلاف الخلفى هذه الجملة

"لايمكنك بحال أن تضع جانباً هذه الرواية الرائعة بما تنطوى عليه من جاذبية آسرة واستراق للنظر "

بالظبط كدة ياعم الحاج :D

المهم ، وبعد هذا الرغى
كانت هذه الرواية تجربتى الأولى مع المجنون موراكامى
فعلا يستحق هذا اللقب بجدارة

أن تجبر قارئ مثلى
لايطيق الكتب ال "بى دى إف"على أن يجلس بالساعات أمام التاب هكذا
ويتعجب من جلوسه هذا الوقت وبهذا الشكل كل العجب
ولايستطيع أن يترك الرواية فترة طويلة رغم غرابة الرواية كما ذكرت فى البداية
فذلك عظيم جداً يارجل .. عظيم للغاية

تدور الرواية فى عالم مابعد الظلام .. أى مابعد منتصف الليل
على مدار سبع ساعات فى ليلة من ليالى الشتاء فى مدينة ما ، تدور الحكاية
ثلاث قصص مختلفة لأشخاص مختلفين تتلاقى فى إطار مصادفات غريبة
ولكن ، اتفقنا ، لا مجال للإستغراب هنا ياسادة

دعونا نتحدث قليلاً عن بداية تلاقى الشخصيات الثلاث المحورية بدون حرق للأحداث
ولكن وعد منكم ألّا تتركوا الريفيو فى المنتصف وتُصابوا بالملل .. اتفقنا ؟ :D

إيرى أساى) .. وشقيقتها (مارى) أساى)
إيرى) الجمال والدلال .. و(مارى) العقل والحكمة)
ثنائى معروف ومكرر .. فى ليلةٍ ما ، تقرر (مارى) الخروج من بيتها وتقضية وقتها فى أى مكان خارج البيت
تجلس فى أحد المطاعم تقرأ كتاباً مع كوب من القهوة .. يجلس معها الشاب (تكاهاشى) بالصدفة
يتجاذبان أطراف الحديث فيكتشف انه يعرف شقيقتها .. يدور اللقاء والحوار .. من بين المعلومات التى يعلمها (تكاهاشى) عن (مارى) انها تتحدث الصينية .. وهنا تدخل المصادفة الثانية

المشهد التالى فى فندق للمتعة وتجارة الهوى .. فتاة صينية تتعرض للضرب المبرح من أحد الزبائن ويتركها تنزف ويهرب بعد أن يأخذ كل ملابسها معه كى لا تبلغ البوليس .. تكتشف ذلك (كاوروو) مديرة الفندق ..تحاول أن تتحدث مع الفتاة ولكنها تفشل فى فهم اللغة الصينية .. فالفندق فى اليابان وبطبيعة الحال اللغة المعتمدة هنا هى اليابانية .. تتصل ب(تكاهاشى) صديقها .. تكاهاشى يخبرها أنه قابل للتو فتاة تعرف الصينية ويخبرها انها تجلس فى المطعم .. تذهب (كاوروو) إلى (مارى) وتتعرف عليها وتأخذها معها إلى الفندق ويتعرفون على الضحية ويساعدونها حتى تفيق وتحكى لهم ماحدث وتمشى .. بينما تمكث (مارى) مع (كاورو) بعد أن تتم المهمة
ومن هنا يبدأ التعارف .. وتبدأ الحكايات

مارى تحكى لكاورو حكايتها باقتضاب
وكاورو تحكى حكايتها لمارى بالتفصيل
ثم تقابل مارى تكاهاشى مرات عديدة وتحكى له قصتها بتفصايل تزيد تدريجياً مع الوقت .. وهو يبادلها قصته أيضاً .. حكايات وحكايات وحكايات
ومتعة وجمال .. وسحر لا نهائى لاتعلم من أين يأتى

إذا وصلت إلى هنا .. أشكرك على الوفاء بوعدك وعدم ترك الريفيو فى المنتصف :D

حسنا .. اتضحت الآن بداية الرواية بالنسبة لك
هذه هى بداية الرواية وبداية اللقاء للثلاث أشخاص محور الأحداث
ويبدأ كل طرف منهم يحكى قصته للآخر
وفى الخلفية تدور أحداث أخرى فى محاولة للوصول إلى المعتدى على الفتاة البائسة
فأنت بالطبع لن تجلس طوال الرواية تسمع حكايات كلاً من الثلاثة أشخاص بدون أن يكون هناك هدف أساسى فى الخلفية يجعلك تكمل الرواية .. موراكامى يعلم هذا ولن يعطيك فرصة للهروب :D

طبعاً.. إياك أن تُجَنّ..وتظن أن هذه هى الرواية
هذه ليست الرواية.. وهذا ليس حرقا لها بالتأكيد
السحر فى الحكايات ياعزيزى
السحر فى التفاصيل
السحر فى الغموض

هناك الكثير والكثير والكثير من التفاصيل الفلسفية والأحداث المجنونة بالداخل
وهناك لغز فى الرواية بعيد عن هذه الجريمة سيجعلك تُجن
لغز آخر ليس له علاقة بالجريمة التى حدثت فى الفندق بل يتعلق بإيرى ومارى
ولكن هذه حكاية أخرى
اكتشفوها بأنفسكم

حسنا أنا أعترف مرة أخرى أننى تحدثت كثيراً وربما أصابكم الملل
وربما كرهتم الرواية من الأساس بعد هذا الكلام
ولكن عفواً .. فأنا فى حالة من النشوة بسحر هذا الرجل
ورغما عنى وجدت نفسى أكتب كل هذا الكلام

لغة موراكامى بالطبع ساحرة
والترجمة من أجمل مايكون

طوال قرائتك لهذه الرواية ستظل منجذباً لكل تفصيلة بها
آملاً فى نهاية تُرضى فضولك تجاه الكثير من الألغاز
متمنياً أن تنطفئ نار الغموض فى النهاية
ولكنها لن تنطفئ .. لذا وجب التحذير

ستظل هذه الرواية عالقة بذهنك لأنها تركتك قبل النهاية بقليل
تركتك على حافة الحيرة والتخبط
وبالرغم من ذلك .. ستشعر بمتعة لاتعلم سبب��ا

هذه رواية الحالة .. إذا فهمتم ما أقصد

رواية عجيبة .. بداية موفقة .. عالم جديد أكتشفه
لن يُعجب بها الكثير أعلم ذلك
سيقول البعض ماجدوى الغموض بدون ايضاحه فى النهاية
ولهم الحق
ولكن فى ذلك متعة ياعزيزى قد لاتعلمها
ولكن لاتستطيع أن تنكر وجودها
هذا هو فن كتابة رواية تعلق بذهنك .. لأنها عبثت بعقلك

Profile Image for Jr Bacdayan.
211 reviews1,741 followers
May 4, 2016
“It’s true, though: time moves in its own special way in the middle of the night.”

I read Murakami’s After Dark exclusively at night time. Capricious as it might sound, I do believe that most of it I read after midnight. Darkness encroaching all around, only a dim desk lamp to illuminate my surroundings. Silence engulfing the atmosphere, sometimes unbearable, often intoxicating. A cup of coffee beside me, a platter of peanuts in front, I relished every moment of this novel. Why? I am captivated by nighttime, more specifically, by the deepest hours of the night. I love the mysteriousness, the loneliness, the profound silence. I bask at darkness filling every recess of space, creating a world void of insanity. For in darkness all show their true form. The vision available to each is limited to the proximity of one’s immediate surroundings, no horizon in front, no skyline behind. All are isolated by this black cloak that contain things unknown. How can one sleep at a time so elegant and enigmatic?

This light novel about strange things that happen during the night is an entree in the gourmet realm of Murakami’s works; a tasty little sample to savor standing amidst the master’s more formidable courses. It is a short interconnected tale about different people who, like me, are most alive when the earth is devoured by its own shadow. It may seem fleeting at times or possibly even rushed, but I think what really scintillates in this novel is the perfect atmosphere that is embodied by its shrill depiction of the night time. Forget all your reservations; forget what seems like an underdeveloped story. I feel that this particular work is Murakami’s artistic ode to the ephemeral night. I want to believe that Murakami purposely kept it short and lingering, for like the story, sometimes we want the night to last, to continue its darkness. But the night moves on its own time and way, we are bound by its deliciousness and we savor it. Nevertheless, as all the things good, it passes by as if it was but a moment. Darkness fades away, and all things are renewed.

We then wait for the next sunset, another night, the darkness.

Whether asleep or awake, no matter how you spend the night, one can never deny that things go interesting after dark.
Profile Image for Prashasti .
111 reviews177 followers
October 27, 2018
"Is action merely the incidental product of thought, or is thought the consequential product of action?"

I'm merely three books old in the Murakami World and I find myself beguiled by the Murakamiesque surrealism. Admittedly, I've developed a taste for the way his stories unfold and come to an anomalous ending; After Dark is no exception to this.
The story actually transports you to those wee midnight "after dark" hours and captures all the activities going on during that period. It's like the entire plot is stretched to that one particular night which changes everything for every character which may or may not likely to be interlinked with one another.
The beauty of the book lies in the fact there's this perfect blend of surrealism with realism, it's sometimes hard to distinguish the differences between the two.
The way each character has his/her own story which conveys a part connecting to the lives of other character and bringing out a completely different angle which connects their lives in some way even they're not aware of, basically, it's just a representation of the fact how in real life we meet hundreds of people and in what way we touch their lives knowing or unknowingly.

This one's a pacy read and I think I finished 90% of the book in a single reading, the remaining 10% was, in the beginning, it took me quite a while to settle into it, but once I was in, there was no looking back.
Another great thing about reading all the Haruki Murakami books for someone like me, who's just so fond of Music, things way more delightful. Murakami is a music lover himself and it's quite evident from all his works, hence, there's a lot of musical references from different genres like jazz, classical and pop-tracks. I LOVE listening to most of the songs mentioned and that makes me love his books even more.
Profile Image for Trevor.
1,301 reviews22k followers
May 28, 2017
I have a strange relationship with Japan – both of my daughters became fascinated with Japan as children and both learnt Japanese. Then one of them went to Japan as an exchange student and then both of them studied Japanese at university, the other one then going to study at Tokyo University for a year. Now both of them work at a Japanese travel agency . At the same time we also have had a Japanese exchange student stay with us – well, more with my ex-wife. And so my Japanese daughter’s name is Eri – which became one of those odd things with reading this book.

I wasn’t sure what to expect with this book – which is one way of saying that this wasn’t what I was expecting it to be at all. I couldn’t help feeling that this was almost teen-fiction. It would not surprise me in the least if this book appeared on some high school reading list. What I’d heard of the author before reading this was that he was a ‘post-modernist’ writer. Leaving aside that it is nearly impossible to know what that could mean anyway, I couldn’t help but feel this book (which might not be typical of his writing) was really very ‘modern’ – in the sense that it is a book of binaries – in fact, this could be a text book on how to construct binaries in fiction and how to have them play out against each other. The two sisters, the two 19 year old girls (one Chinese coming to Japan, one Japanese going to China), the two ‘computer experts’, the two frightening men in the television screens – and so on as far as the eye can see.

Now, I don’t want to leave the impression that I was annoyed by this – actually, fiction is the best place for these kinds of binaries and they help us to understand the themes of texts in ways it is very hard to understand such themes otherwise. And this book is masterfully written and rather beautiful in many places. I want to leave this review without spoilers – and so I will.

All the same, I’m going to tell a story. Years ago the phone rang in the middle of the night and I struggled out of bed to answer it. Dazed and not completely awake I said hello. I was in my late-twenties – so I don’t remember thinking ‘phone calls in the middle of the night are never good news’. I just answered the phone.

The young man on the other end was furious. He didn’t ask me who I was or anything else, he just said, “I know what you did to my sister and I’m coming to get you for it”. I tried to tell him he had the wrong number, but he had hung up. Like I said, I’ve daughters – so, the idea that some idiot was coming around to teach me a lesson had lots of implications, none of which were all that attractive. Which was when I realised that just because this guy had the wrong number didn’t for a second mean he also had the wrong address – a coincidence that otherwise would be worthy of Sartre.

Even so, I went to bed and found it very difficult to go back to sleep. Being on the receiving end of irrational aggression and the threat of violence isn’t something you can easily shrug aside – even when you know the person threatening you has made a mistake, even when you know they can’t make good on their threat. I remember thinking 'I wish I had said, I did, and I would do it again - see you when you get here' - but treating such situations with humour is almost always something that comes after the fact.

Like I said, there was lots I liked about this book. But I can’t help feeling it is teen fiction, extremely good teen fiction, though.
Profile Image for Bradley.
Author 5 books4,099 followers
February 10, 2017
It's a clever little tale about night people, dreams (of all kinds), and subtle humor, mixed with grand and interesting detail in the style of so much horror fiction and a brooding (mostly) off-screen terror that lurks in the night.

Did I mention it's Japanese? Sure, it should be kinda obvious from such a big name like Murakami, but this is, after all, my first foray into his works. What can I say? I thought it was pretty damn great. I didn't have any expectations, so I just let myself flow with all the many characters and let myself enjoy the impressions and the interesting conversations and enjoy the admittedly adroit tension that lurked like a hot thread throughout the night.

I loved the whole idea of Alphaville, but then, I am a sucker for all things SF, even if it's just a discourse about SF, imaginary or not. :) But then it all ties back into dreams, too, and while the majority of the novel is so firmly grounded in reality and hard-hitting details and thoroughly interesting character studies, it has it's other moments, too. :)

I'm really looking forward to more of his work!
Profile Image for Dalia Nourelden.
542 reviews759 followers
April 8, 2023
هاروكى بالنسبة لى بلا منازع ملك القصص العادية التى تجذبك بطريقة غير عادية 🤩 والتى يقدمها ايضا ممزوجة بطريقة غرائبية غير معتادة يمزج الخيال بالواقع بطريقة مميزة فعلا .

اخر رفيو واخر قراءة لعام ٢٠٢٠ ننهيها مع هاروكى ❤، ربما ليست افضل ما قرأت له ولم تجذبني كما اعتدت مع هاروكى 😔 لكنه هاروكى فى كل الاحوال صديق الشخصيات الوحيدة ، محب الكتب والموسيقى . نصير الشخصيات المختلفة . صاحب الخيال المختلف . الذى دائما بصفتى شخصية انطوائية ووحيدة اجد نفسى بين شخصياته وأرى نفسى كواحدة منهم .
احببت شخصية مارى بوحدتها و كتبها.


هاروكى يجعلنى عاجزة عن كتابة رفيو يخص روايته او ملخص عنها ، روايات هاروكى تقرأ ، تعاش ، لا استطيع تلخيصها او تجميع افكارها.
اكتفي بما كتب فى الملخص عن الرواية فى صفحتها والموجود على الغلاف


"قد تبدو الأرض التي تقف عليها صلبة بما يكفي ، ولكن إذاحدث شئ ما ، فإنها يمكن ان تتزلزل من تحت قدميك . وبمجرد ان يحدث ذلك ، فلن تعود الأمور إلى سابق عهدها . كل ما تستطيعين عمله هو ان تعيشى وحيدة هناك وسط الظلام "

" ثمة أشياء لا يمكن للمرء ان يفعلها إلا بمفرده ، وأشياء اخرى لا تؤدى الا برفقة آخر . ومن المهم للمرء ان يمزج الاثنين معا بحسب المقادير المناسبة"

"إن الذاكرة شئ مثير للغاية ! انها اشبه بتلك الأدراج المحشوة بأشياء كثيرة عديمة الجدوي . وفى تلك الاثناء ، ناخذ فى نسيان الأشياء المهمة فعلا ، الواحد تلو الآخر


يوم جديد عام جديد يارب يكون عام سعيد للجميع
كل عام وأنتم بخير

٣١ / ١٢ / ٢٠٢٠
Profile Image for Amira Mahmoud.
618 reviews8,293 followers
August 4, 2015
ولأننا دائمًا ما نبدأ مع الكُتاب بأعمالهم الأشهر والأكثر نجاحًا ، ولأنها دائمًا ما ترفع سقف توقعاتنا
ولأننا لا نكف عن مقارنتها بباقي أعماله الأخرى مما يسبب خيبة أمل وعدم رضا عن تلك الأعمال
لم ابدأ مع هاروكي موراكامي بعمله الأشهر ( كافكا على الشاطئ ) ، كان اللقاء الأول مع هذا الكاتب سريع وبسيط في روايته القصيرة نعاس ، ثم كانت التجربة الثانية مع هذه الرواية

ما بعد الظلام ، هي ليست رواية رعب كما توقع أغلب القراء وعلى رأسهم أنا ، هي فقط رواية تدور أحداثها في الجزء الأخير من الليل عندما يحل الظلام ، ما يحدث بعده ؟
يأخذ موراكامي القارئ معه في رحلة ليلية صغيرة ، لتجد أنه في الوقت الذي يذهب فيه العالم إلى الراحة ويخلد الجميع للنوم ويعم الظلام ، ثمة هناك عالم آخر يأخذ في الظهور ويبدأ يمارس حياته في ذلك العالم الليلي

القصة عن شقيقتين مختلفتين تمام الاختلاف ، كُلّ منهما تغار من الأخرى وتحسدها على نمط الحياة الذي تعيش به ، وتدور القصة بأحداث قليلة ولكن بمصادفات عديدة تجعل أبطال الرواية القلائل يتشابكون معًا
وما أن تعتقد أن الحبكة بدأت في الظهور وأن الرواية تأخذ منحى تقليدي حتى يُنهي موركامي الرواية بنهاية ميلودرامية ومفتوحة ، لا حبكة ، لا تشابك في الشخصيات ولا في الأحداث
وكُلّ تلك الشخصيات التي وصفها والتي جعلك تتعايش معها ، أين دورها ؟
لا شيء ، هو فقط يروي لمجرد أنها جزء من قطع البازل لكن أن يجمعها لتخرج الرواية في شكلها الكامل ، ذلك لم يحدث !!
على الرغم أن الروايات والنهايات التقليدية لا تجذبني ، لكن كُنت أفضل أن ينهيها بشكل تقليدي على أن ينهيها بشكل مفتوح لا معنى له

الرواية لا بأس بها ، لكن لا أستطيع أن أرى الإبداع الذي يتحدث عنه محبيه !!

إلى لقاء آخر عزيزي موراكامي على الشاطئ مع الرفيق كافكا :)
Profile Image for Araz Goran.
824 reviews3,622 followers
August 18, 2022
صياغة الشخصيات بصورة مبتكرة وفنية للغاية.. يعتمد الكاتب في روايته على مبدأ التردد المخيف للنفس البشرية

يا الله ، لو كان للظلام سيرة، فإن أفضل من يكتب عن ذلك هو موركامي دون شك، هذه الحميمية الليلة التي يأخذنا فيها موراكامي من خلال ليلة كاملة، نجوب هذا العالم المظلم الذي يشكل نسبة النصف من حياتها، ماذا نعرف فيه غير أنه منطقة نوم وخمول و ظلام لا نهائي، موراكامي يلعب في هذه المنطقة، يتحسس المناطق الدافئة منها والمجنونة والوحشية، الأشخاص الذين يتحولون إما إلى نيام أبديين أو متوحشين أو متجولون يبحثون عن لقمة طعام أو صحبة مع غريب أو رؤية العالم من منظور مختلف أو هرباً من الحياة نفسها، وما من أفضل من وقت الليل لتقديم كل ذلك، يبدع الكاتب هنا في تجليات كثيرة بأسلوب بسيط وسرد سهل ومراوغة حلوة بين أحداث متعددة وربما متشابكة في الآن ذاته، من يعلم مصائر البشر، حيث يغط الانسان في النوم، من يعلم ماذا يحدث في الخارج وكم من مصائر تتبدل وتهوي وتتشاكس وكم من أناس غرباء يلتقون لا يصادفهم غير ليل دامس وأضواء مترددة وأحاديث تطرب لها النفس، ليس لجمال قائلها ربما أو لروعة الكلمات، بل لأن الليل يحول كل الأشياء إلى ومضة لذيذة، فيذهب العقل إلى أبعد مما يفعل في النهار، لأنه يكون صافياً وغير خائف من الأشياء التي قد تجلبها ضجة النهار وتعقيداته ..

هناك شيء نبه إليه موراكامي في هذه الرواية، وهي أن الليل شيء جديد في حياة الناس في هذا القرن والقرن الماضي، لم يكن الناس سابقاً يعرفون الليل كما نعرفه نحن، كانوا سابقاً يتداولون الليل كوقت للنوم والراحة والهدوء ويكاد يكون عدماً في أزمان قديمة، عكس ما يحدث اليوم ، حيث فقد الليل الكثير من معانيه الاصيلة وتحول مع مرور الوقت مكانا وزمانا لا يهدأ فيه شيء، بل قد يحمل عالماً موازيا لعالم النهار وحياة سفلية بعيدة عن اذهاننا وأفكارنا عن الليل الطويل والهادئ والرزين ..

رواية دافئة بحق، مغرية التفاصيل، سلسة الحوارات والمشاعر، تلامس الواقع الخارجي للنفس البشرية وتخرج عالم الليل من قمقمه كما لم نره من قبل ولم نتذوق ظلمته الحالكة ..
Profile Image for Heba Tariq.
655 reviews272 followers
March 10, 2015
للمرة الثانية يفقدني هاروكي موراكامي عقلي، بعد روايته "نعاس"
علي نفس الخطي نمشي انا و هاروكي
هو يكتب و يكتب و انا انسي نومي و عملي و طعامي، افقد عقلي تدريجيا
و اندمج لاصبح انا بداخل سطوره، تائهة ابحث عن النهاية، بينما خيالي سارحا للبحث عن مغزي السطور
حتي نصل للنهاية صدمة الصدمات ف اظل أكرر
نعم! هل انتهيت؟!!!
هذا الساحر الياباني، يمسك يديك بخفة، يدخلك المتاهة،يقودك نحو الهلاك
لن اكتب شرح تفصيلي عن الرائعة تلك، حتي لا اساهم في كشف مفاجأتها عمن لم يتناولها بعد.
و لكن اقول انه ما بعد الظلام، بامكانك ان تجد ذاتك، فقط تحتاج المرايا التي تكشف لك طريق النور في روحك، اعلم ان للنور مكمن في ركن ضيق من أركان الروح :)
Profile Image for Jason Pettus.
Author 24 books1,324 followers
November 25, 2007
(My full review of this book is larger than GoodReads' word-count limitations. Find it at the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography [cclapcenter.com].)

"You know what I think?" she says. "That people's memories are maybe the fuel they burn to stay alive. Whether those memories have any actual importance or not, it doesn't matter as far as the maintenance of life is concerned. They're all just fuel. Advertising fillers in the newspaper, philosophy books, dirty pictures in a magazine, a bundle of ten-thousand-yen bills: when you feed 'em to the fire, they're all just paper."

There are lots of people out there, myself included, who believe Japanese author Haruki Murakami to be the creator these days of some of the most beautiful dialogue currently being produced on the planet; and after coming across an example like the one above, how really can you not agree? For years a well-known secret among the Western world's literary hipsters, it was not until Murakami's embrace by indie heavy-hitter McSweeney's at the turn of the millennium that he acquired a mainstream following within English-speaking countries; now that his work is getting more and more known, however, there are more and more people now aware of what a magical and sometimes almost perfect thing a Murakami novel is. I'll admit right off the bat, for example, that I'm a big and longtime fan of Murakami myself; that before today's review I had already read four of his thirteen books now available in English, and in fact love his work so much that I've named one of my past Macintoshes after him. (See, anytime I acquire another Mac, I rename the hard drive after a writer I really admire, so that I can tell them apart when linking them together as an in-home network...and, um...er, never mind.)

Murakami's latest English novel, then, the slim but still deeply strange After Dark, becomes this week my fifth full-length novel of his, and in fact...
Profile Image for Phrynne.
3,323 reviews2,145 followers
August 25, 2015
If you opened this book up at any page without first looking at its cover you would still know immediately who the author was. Haruki Murakami has such a distinctive style it could be no one else. This particular book is very short and in my opinion not the best he has written. I loved the way he evokes those dark hours between midnight and dawn but there is less than usual substance to the book and an awful lot of mystery which is never solved. I think I needed a few more chapters and a little bit more resolution to feel completely satisfied.
Profile Image for Jenna ❤ ❀  ❤.
810 reviews1,267 followers
February 20, 2021
Another imaginative and entertaining Haruki Murakami read.... but I have no clue what all it's supposed to mean! 

I think this is the most lost I've been with a Murakami and I'll be pondering it for days to come. Maybe there's a meaning to discover - and maybe there's not. 🤷🏼‍♀️

Either way, it was an enjoyable ride.
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