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Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  110,392 ratings  ·  9,858 reviews
A New York Times and Washington Post notable book, and one of the Financial Times, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Slate, Mother Jones, The Daily Beast, and BookPage's best books of the year

An instant #1 New York Times Bestseller, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is the remarkable story of a young man haunted by a great loss; of dreams and nightmares that have
Hardcover, 298 pages
Published August 12th 2014 by Harvill Secker (first published April 12th 2013)
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3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  110,392 ratings  ·  9,858 reviews

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Brendon Schrodinger
Aug 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japan
The phone rang as I was slicing potatoes for a massuman curry one afternoon whist listening to Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. I didn’t particularly want to answer the phone as it was likely to be a telemarketer, but it could be someone phoning about possible work.
“So how is it so far?” asked a woman’s voice on the other end.
Our phone line is terrible, but I still did not recognize the voice.
“Excuse me? I think you may have the wrong number.”
“No, I have the correct number. How are you finding Murak
I wish I could tell you this book is about gregarious men, women who are more than their boobs and their stupid advice, disdain for train stations, vivacious characters, solvable mysteries. Hell, I wish I could tell you it’s about unicorns, shoguns and samurai clans, aliens, post-apocalyptic Japan, killer penguins or the Russian tundra. Anything other than the old Murakami tropes again.

Surprising no one, the book deals with lost friendship and the exasperating whining that derives from that. To
Koen Van den Eeckhout
Jan 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
To me, Murakami's books are like ice cream. Many people will claim that it's just more of the same, and in a way they are right. But I am not complaining, because it's just more of the same delicious, luscious thing. Also, while a too large bowl of ice cream can cause stomach troubles (maybe like The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles), this time Murakami limits himself to a nice amount of 360 pages.

I will not go into much detail on the plot. At the age of 20, Tsukuru Tazaki is kicked out of his brotherhoo
Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
This is easily one of the saddest books I have ever read. I found it extremely difficult to read in places. I know what it is to lose friends, to have people randomly walk out of your life as if you never existed: it’s not a nice feeling after years of friendship.

For Tsukuru its four friends and they all exit at once. He gets a phone call from one of them informing him that the group have unanimously decided that he is no longer part of it. The shock is something that he carries with him for his
Jul 04, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japan, fiction

Source of the original image here.

No bingo this time.

I've had an awfully hard time trying to write a review for this one. When I try to write an honest review, non-professional that I am, I try to write something that's 1) more substantive than what the back blurb would say, and 2) something which would help myself or any other reader distinguish this from anything else the author has written. I don't always meet both of these qualifications, but here I'm just at a total loss.

The basic tropes o
Dec 09, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013, fiction, japanese
(Note: there's a big spoiler in this review, but I'm going to mark it so you should be able to skip it.)

I wanted to like this book.

I ordered it after reading the description in the German preview, and I could hardly wait. The plot sounded intriguing, and this was going to be the first "real" novel I was going to read in Japanese, and it was by an author whose works I mostly enjoyed until then. This was going to be so good!

And it was, in the beginning. Tazaki Tsukuru used to be part of a group o
Ian "Marvin" Graye
From Young Adult to Mature

Many of Murakami's novels deal with the transition from adolescence to adulthood. This probably accounts for their amazing popularity, especially with young Japanese readers.

However, you have to wonder whether Murakami can continually plough the fields of this subject matter at his age, without losing his youthful audience.

As at the date of publication of this novel, he is aged 65, which in some countries is the traditional mandatory retirement age.

I suspect that "Col
Dec 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the colorless
Recommended to s.penkevich by: Catharine B
Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.
-Søren Kierkegaard

It is a shame that we cannot relive the past, only merely recreate it. We bear the scars of events we can only comprehend in retrospect, but must rely on flawed memory and biased examinations of what truly came to pass. Internationally acclaimed novelist Haruki Murakami’s 2014 novel, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage—a title that screams of pure Murakami whimsy and flair, is a novel abo
Aug 12, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
“You can hide memories, but you can't erase the history that produced them.”
― Haruki Murakami, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki


A slow soak in a bath of music, color, friends, loneliness, philosophy, creation and death. Murakami is a genius at writing with emotions swirling beneath the text. He gets the importance of the notes AND the silence of prose; of the unsaid, dreamy place that is both recognized and strange.

This isn't his most exciting work, but it is clearly not a throw-away either. It brings a
J.L.   Sutton
Mar 13, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tsukuru Tazaki’s life looks like it’s going well, but he’s emotionally stuck. He’s located the place in the past where this has happened, a time when close friends inexplicably banish him from their group, but 16 years later he still doesn’t know why. What follows is a compelling idiosyncratic odyssey in search of answers and identity. Murakami’s novel is a meditation on moving forward and coming to terms with a past which will always be outside our reach, always incomprehensible. I look forward ...more
Jan 21, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Depressing Haruki Murakami facsimile of the most amateurish kind. It's evocative, transcendent, but solely in a topically-curt, almost embarrassingly-superficial way. The easy prose by now has entered a very comical dimension.

This is farce. It is all simplicity, nuance; it's all pretty... empty. LAAAAME

Is this (the beginning of) the downfall of our very beloved Japanese contemporary literary master?
Ahmad Sharabiani
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage, Haruki Murakami
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is the thirteenth[n novel by Japanese writer Haruki Murakami. Published on 12 April 2013 in Japan, it sold one million copies in one month. Tsukuru Tazaki is a 36-year-old man whose defining features are his love of train stations and the fact his four best friends all ceased to speak to him during his second year at university: "Like Jonah in the belly of the whale, Tsukuru
K.D. Absolutely
Aug 21, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: Emir Never
My 13th Murakami book. I am torn between 2 and 3 stars but since there are no talking cats, flying leeches or Colonel Sanders in this book, I am giving this a 3. I liked this book. I mean, I loved "Wind-Up Bird" but it was one of my first Murakami books, I was a lot younger then and I still did not know that Murakami recycles the same ingredients when he cooks.

This book is almost like a rehash of "Norwegian Wood." Tsukuru Tazaki in this book is 36 and Toru Watanabe in Norwegian is 37 and they lo
Helene Jeppesen
Mar 15, 2017 rated it it was amazing
As a fan of Haruki Murakami's, this book thrilled me! That's because this novel combines an intriguing and puzzling plot with a beautiful and simple way of looking at life. I was fascinated with the protagonist's way of thinking and dealing reasonably with life, and furthermore it was a pleasure to once again read a story set in Japan because it inevitably intertwines with Japanese culture.
Regrettably, this book didn't come with a lot of magical realism which is, however, a common trait of Mura
Sep 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
“You can hide memories, but you can't erase the history that produced them.”

This is barely my second Murakami reading. Having "Kafka on the Shore" in my mind, read just a couple of months ago, I thought I would also find that bizarre, transcendental and almost phantasmagorical similar experience. "Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage" is written under a complete different ambiance, yet it possesses certain Murakami essentials I begin to recognize in his style and probably every
My book with all decorations:

There are two divisions in people who read Haruki Murakami’s books.

First one being, those who are addicted to his universe; a different sphere of reality, where at a special time and place imagination had been set free. Once you are in, you never want to come to reality like a person who had his first gulp of his drink, feels a gust of wind swooping inside his skull and feels as if his brain is floating with a sparkling smile on the corner of his lips.

And latter one
Here's a review I'm not looking forward to write... So I will leave the preamble to Robert J. Wiersema’s thoughts in The National Post, which sadly echoed my sentiments exactly.

"Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and his Years of Pilgrimage is a stirring novel of loss and conciliation, of unanswerable mysteries, fragile hope. There are passages of considerable beauty and insight, and moments of magic and a sense of the sublime which we have come to expect from Murakami. At its most basic level, it will s
Matthew Quann
Oct 03, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Haruki Murakami and I are breaking up, and it’s him, not me.

I was at first enchanted by 1Q84’s mystery, unique, easy-to-read style and peculiar dialogue. I was less impressed by my second dip into the Murakami pool in The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, though I realize a lot of people love that novel. So, this was it, Murakami’s last chance. Would he wow me with Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage, or leave me out in the cold.

Dear reader, the star-rating is at the top, so you already
My first Murakami, and probably my last.

After all the raves for Murakami, I expected this to blow me away.

Even as I found my enthusiasm waning, I still thought there would come a point where the author would pull all the pieces together and I would have this sudden a-ha moment -- I was really looking forward to that.

Even when I reached the point of literally forcing myself to continue -- come on, you can do it, only three more chapters! -- I STILL thought there would be SOMETHING to make the
Jul 21, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Now several weeks after reading this, the man who seeks his color still sticks in my mind in a sad and sweet way. You have to relinquish your expectations based on what you may love in Murikami’s other writing, his wild rides of personal discovery with comic overlays of head-scratching mystery and magic realism. No cats or Colonel Sanders. Instead, we get a story of a man frozen in his development due to an abandonment by a special circle of friends from school. The persistent dwelling by Tazaki ...more
Jan 13, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
خورد توی ذوقم!

بابا من کارهای موراکامی رو دوست دارم. ولی تکلیفش با خودش مشخص نیست. توی کافکا در کرانه دیوانهت میکنه و اینجا با چیزهای دمدستی و عامهپسند و زرد! بهمعنای واقعی کلمه طرف میشی. البته قرار نیست موراکامی یا هر نویسندۀ خوب دیگهای هرچی مینویسه شاهکار باشه خب. برای یه نویسندۀ درجهیک هم داستانهاش سطحبندی دارن بهنظرم. بعضی نویسندهها فقط یک کارشون شاهکاره. بعضیا دو سه تا. بقیه کارها متوسطن.

خیلیها موراکامی رو دوست ندارن؛ بهخصوص اگه با داستانکوتاهاش شروع کرده باشن. من خیلیها رو میشناسم میگن عه
Jr Bacdayan
Apr 15, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“On his 20th year all Tsukuru Tazaki could think about was dying…” funny how the opening lines of a novel can hit you like an arrow through the heart. Like Tsukuru I’m twenty years old right now and if I’m going to be honest to myself and to you dear reader, it would be a lie if I said I’ve never thought about dying. To explain it, there is a word used often but seldom understood: Depression. Not only a word, more than an emotional state, beyond Kubler-Ross’ stage of grief, it is a living form o ...more
Mar 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: when you underestimate yourself and your importance
Tsukuru Tazaki, at 36 a railways station and its repair planner, is telling to his newest friend, Sara, about an important incident in his past, one that has left a great mark on him (a some level of blocking inside) and that still smarts today: sixteen years ago, a group of close friends of his suddenly cut all contact with him, leaving him with a months-long crisis that left both changes in looks and in how he views himself. All of them had color-related names, which made him call himself 'Col ...more
Leslie Ray
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Quite a melancholy book that centers around Tsukuru Tazaki, whose name means "colorless". His pilgrimage is a journey to find out why he was abruptly rejected outright by his four closest friends from school. For anyone who has faced rejection, without knowing why and who questions their place in the scheme of things, this will be a journey for you too. When he finds out why, he will realize that it wasn't about him at all. When he finds that the world does not revolve around him and is able to ...more
Jul 22, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: japanese
I'm sorry, but I have to ask you not to call us anymore.

So says one of Tsukuru Tazaki's four close-knit friends in high school. They were inseparable, four fingers and a thumb. But without explanation, Tsukuru is cut loose.

And so, colorless, Tsukuru Tazaki watches train stations. (I thought maybe Murakami was channeling Bohumil Hrabal, but he's not.) Then he builds train stations. Yet his life is a void. So Murakami, this time without the magic realism, tells us why Tsukuru was rejected and we w
Oct 17, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: drama, mainstream, míos
‘Los años de peregrinación del chico sin color’ es quizá la menos murakamiana de las novelas del autor japonés. La historia atrapa desde la primera página, como es habitual en la obra de Murakami, pero se echa en falta esa atmósfera hipnótica y misteriosa tan característica, donde se sirve de cierto realismo mágico y universos paralelos para explicarnos lo incierto del alma humana. Esta vez, Murakami opta por una historia más realista, sin apenas fantasía, salvo algunos sueños un tanto irreales ...more
Michelle Sung
Murakami's latest, "Colorless Tasaki Tsukuru and His Years of Pilgrimage" has been compared to his earlier work, "Norwegian Wood" by the press, and yes it is similar in that it touches upon similar themes such as the loss of innocence. But i'd say it is about the loss of self-identity in a broader sense, the arbritrariness of human relationships (and our stubborn pursuit for meaning in denial of that arbitrariness), and also the ennui that creeps in during one's 30s and 40s (i.e.,you're not yet ...more
Το Άσχημο Ρύζι Καρολίνα
Είναι ένας ισορροπημένος συνδυασμός ανάμεσα στον ρεαλισμό και το όνειρο. Κάτι σαν μαγικός ρεαλισμός με μια εσάνς Άπω Ανατολής. Υπάρχει ο κόσμος των σκιών και υπάρχει και η αμείλικτη πραγματικότητα. Μου αρέσει αυτή η λεπτή μινιμαλιστική προσέγγιση του σύγχρονου κόσμου και ομολογώ πως αν δεν μου το είχε κάνει δώρο ο φίλος Γιώργος, δεν θα καταπιανόμουν με τον Μουρακάμι. Και θα έχανα πολλά.

Σε αυτό το συγκεκριμένο έργο, ο ήρωας προσπαθεί να λύσει ένα μυστήριο. Και μέσα από αυτό θέλει να καταλάβει τον
Sep 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
می شود روی خاطره ها سرپوش گذاشت ولی تاریخ را نمی شود قایم کرد
سوکورو تازاکی یک آدم فوق العاده رنگ دار است

سوکورو در طول رمان و اتفاقاتش به خودشناسی میرسه
سوکورو تازاکی بی رنگ و سال های زیارتش بر خلاف کافکا در کرانه آنچنان جادویی و سوررئال نیست
خط روایی داستان ساده و خطی است با فلش بک هایی به گذشته که به تدریج به زمان حال می رسه
چیزی که بیشتر از هر چیزی برام لذت بخشه هنگام خوندن موراکامی، حضور موسیقی کلاسیک در کاراش هست
در کل از خوندنش پشیمون نیستم و از شنیدن قطعه ی “له مل دو پی” لذت بردم و خوشحالم که
Sara Alaee
Mar 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sara by: Shayan Foroozesh
Shelves: fiction, novel
"می توانی روی خاطره ها سرپوش بگذاری، یا چه می دانم، سرکوبشان کنی، ولی نمی توانی تاریخی را که این خاطرات را شکل داده پاک کنی. هر چی باشد، این یادت بماند، تاریخ را نه می شود پاک کرد نه عوض. مثل این است که بخواهی خودت را نابود کنی..."

رمان قصه پنج دوست است که در دوران دبیرستان با هم آشنا شده اند و حلقه ای صمیمی را تشکیل داده اند: دو دختر و سه پسر. غیر از سوکورو -شخصیت اصلی داستان- قسمتی از نام هریک از چهار نفر دیگر در زبان ژاپنی به معنی یک رنگ است: قرمز، آبی، سفید و سیاه. به همین دلیل دوستانش سوکورو
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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:

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
“You can hide memories, but you can't erase the history that produced them.” 518 likes
“One heart is not connected to another through harmony alone. They are, instead, linked deeply through their wounds. Pain linked to pain, fragility to fragility. There is no silence without a cry of grief, no forgiveness without bloodshed, no acceptance without a passage through acute loss. That is what lies at the root of true harmony.” 463 likes
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