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Kafka on the Shore

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  248,133 ratings  ·  17,144 reviews
Kafka on the Shore, a tour de force of metaphysical reality, is powered by two remarkable characters: a teenage boy, Kafka Tamura, who runs away from home either to escape a gruesome oedipal prophecy or to search for his long-missing mother and sister; and an aging simpleton called Nakata, who never recovered from a wartime affliction and now is drawn toward Kafka for reas ...more
Paperback, 467 pages
Published January 3rd 2006 by Vintage International (first published 2002)
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Christopher Weil I think you need to back up a bit in your reasoning. Why do you need to gain per-se at all? Kafka on the shore can't be fully understood because the…moreI think you need to back up a bit in your reasoning. Why do you need to gain per-se at all? Kafka on the shore can't be fully understood because the author draws from many metaphysical sources. That plane of thinking is never clearly defined. But, to get a better understanding of Kafka on The Shore you have to read two of his other books, Hard Boiled Wonderland, and The Wind-up Bird Chronicle. Furthermore, I don't believe Murakami is popular for writing books that are "telling" and that's the beauty of his writing. Just like Virgina Woolf wrote stories that have absolutely no plot, which was unheard before her doing so. Much of the literature we read has something telling or something directly communicable. Murakami creates, instead, a feeling that is tied to the environments of his characters. You don't always understand what is occurring in a "this is coming together kind of way" to point to a realization about the character or about life. But there is a sense that you get with each event that he constructs beautifully. And the last thing I have to say, and what I am going to say goes well for most of people's contemporary attitudes about most of the material we consume, and that is, we look and value stories by their content. If you want to know why Murakami has gained acclaim just looking at the bizarre events striking his novels, it is not enough. Murakami has gain acclaim also for his writing style, which is clever, crisp--he simply paints well with words. And just as Marcus Bird has commented many of the plot elements that make-up his novels are difficult to pull off while not losing control of his story. Writers probably understand this better. (less)

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Jul 15, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Masochists
Few books have infected me with boredom-induced ADD, the desire to gnaw my own foot off at the ankle, and the state of mind you might experience if forced to sit upon a nest of hornets while watching your home being burglarized, but this was one of them. It took me until page 70 to stop wanting to hop up and rearrange the spice cupboard or my sock drawer every few sentences, but then the feeling returned at page 243. Only 224 pages to go! From then on, my hatred and resentment of this book progr ...more
Mohamed Al
Apr 13, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: روايات
إلتقيت قبل أيام بزميل ياباني ودار بيننا حوار حول الأدب والقراءة، وتطرقنا لرواية هاروكي موراكامي هذه، وسألني إن كنت قد فهمت الرواية، خصوصًا أنني أبديت إعجابي الشديد بها، فقلت له: بصراحة .. كلا!
ضحك بشدة وقال لي : لو أنك قلت أنك فهمت الرواية لجزمت بأنك لم تقرأها، فهذه الرواية أصلا قائمة على عدم الفهم: عدم فهم الحياة، عدم فهم الحب، عدم فهم الذات..إلخ وهي بعكس روايات باولو كويلو الوعظية -مثلاً- لا تقدم لك إجابات جاهزة ومعلبة، أو تطبطب على عقلك، أو تحقن روحك بمخدر موضعي، بل تسبب لك قلقًا فكريًا وتدفعك
Mohammed Arabey
أغلب اصدقائي بدأوا الريفيو ب"ناكاتا ليس ذكيا"و"عقل ناكاتا لا يحتمل كل هذا"..حسنا
بعد قراءة الاحداث الغرائبية بل والسريالية احيانا, أشعر بـ انني قد تحولت الي ناكاتا
إنها قصه كافكا الشاب الذي هرب من بيت أبيه هربا من لعنة سوداء ستتحقق
وناكاتا العجوز الذي يحب الحنكليس ويتحدث الي القطط ويبحث عن نصف ظله الاخر
وربما اجمل مافي رحلة كافكا هي الحوار الثقافي الفني بالمكتبة الرائعة, وإن طال
ولكن الامور تتأزم وتزداد غرابة وغموض ودموية..لكافكا من جهه وناكاتا من اخري
ثم تزداد الاحداث الغريبة والسريالية في رحلة البحث
Jeffrey Keeten
Aug 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-japanese
”Sometimes fate is like a small sandstorm that keeps changing directions. You change direction but the sandstorm chases you. You turn again, but the storm adjusts. Over and over you play this out, like some ominous dance with death just before dawn.


Because this storm isn’t something that blew in from far away, something that has nothing to do with you. This storm is you. Something inside of you. So all you can do is give in to it, step right inside the storm, closing your eyes and plugging
Jesse (JesseTheReader)
This was definitely an interesting read. I feel like I will have to read it again for everything to fully make sense, but I was surprised by how easy this book was to follow. I also loved the writing style! I will definitely be giving more books by Haruki Murakami ago in the future.
Paquita Maria Sanchez
Jul 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: literature, japan
I feel compelled to say something about this right now, simply for the fact that I have seen a lot of Murakami bickering on goodreads over the years, and it has done nothing but increase in frequency in the moments leading up to, during, and beyond the release of his mammoth novel 1Q84, meaning the last couple o' months. I guess I just feel a need to state my case for the man, since he seems severely divisive in this striking way. Sure, I could certainly compose a lengthy list of love-or-hate wr ...more
Apr 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
هذه قراءة سريالية عبثية لرواية لن تجدوا ملخصا اعتياديا لها

كافكا على الشاطئ هي رواية يابانية بدون شك ,فالكاتب ياباني و الجغرافيا يابانية و الأسماء و الأطعمة و الهواء و الحروب يابانية,حتى فن التواصل و الحديث و النظام ياباني,فهي إذن يابانية الجسد لكنها عالمية الهوى , تاهت في عوالم مختلفة و أزمنة مختلفة ,زارت سوداوية كافكا التشيكي و انصهرت في الموسيقى الكلاسيكية الأوروبية و بدعها الأمريكية,و انسجمت مع الشد العصبي للأدب الأمريكي,بل كان لنا نصيب في لفحة شرقية مع الغالية شهرزاد,كافكا على الشاطئ رواية
Jr Bacdayan
Jan 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Kafka on the Shore is a metaphor. It follows no rules, it doesn’t adhere to reason, and applicability is not an issue. It fills you up, it tears you down. A fugue of emotions are present, you can’t seem to figure out which of the many different realizations flooding you is most important. Waves roll up again and again on the beach of your consciousness and at first you resist, but after a while you understand that your struggle is pointless, so you give in. You read, you feel, you try to underst ...more

There are two reasons as to why I chose Kafka on the shore as my first Murakami’s novel:

1.The name Kafka in the title (unconventional and erudite)
2.There are cats in this book and they talk and I love Cats (unconventional criteria)

Hence my journey began into Harukis’s surreal world of inebriating storytelling that has surely made me addictive. I was completely clueless as to what to expect from this novel and I am glad that I was, since contrariwise the subsequent experience I had wouldn’t have
K.D. Absolutely
Feb 20, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Tata J and Ranee (who loves Murakami)
Recommended to K.D. by: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die
Shelves: 1001-core
Definitely a page-turner! Once you start, you just keep on reading. Well, why do we stop reading a book? I think we can group the reasons into three: (1) Natural - work, eat, toilet, eyes are tired, other distractions, etc; (2) Boredom - the book or its part is boring; and (3) Need to Digest - sometimes I read a phrase or an idea and it is either hard to understand so I read several times or too beautiful that I want it to sink in and I want to remember it forever.

For my first Haruki Murakami bo
When I awoke, I realized I had slept through the night. But had it been a dream or not? It was impossible to tell. I got up, took a shower, brushed my teeth and shaved, paying special attention to my neck. When my face was again smooth and slightly pink from the razor, I went into the kitchen for breakfast.

I washed down an English muffin and jelly with two cups of strong black coffee, no sugar added, and walked out onto the balcony. The sun was still creeping higher in the sky, struggling to bre
Jan 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
اینقدر که کتابش رو دوست داشتم یکدفعه که تموم شد واقا دلم خواست به جای نوشتن با موبایل , لپ تاپم رو روشن کنم و به یاد قدیما که خیلی چیزا مینوشتم , با انگشت هام ریویو رو تایپ کنم ... یک جایی توی آپدیت های دیشب گفتم یک جور بیماری هیجان هراسی دارم :)) خنده ی حضار ! :)) برای همین خیلی طول کشید تا این کتاب پرهیجان رو تمومش کنم چون هروقت به نقطه ی اوج میرسید من میذاشتمش کنار و تپش قلب میگرفتم :)) باز هم خنده ی حضار :)) خلاصه به هر سختی ای بود به این بیماری غلبه کردم و این اثر خاص موراکامی رو هم تمومش ک ...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
海辺のカフカ = Umibe no kafuka = Kafka On The Shore, Haruki Murakami
Kafka On The Shore is a 2002 novel by Japanese author Haruki Murakami. Its 2005 English translation was among "The 10 Best Books of 2005" from The New York Times and received the World Fantasy Award for 2006.
عنوانها: کافکا در کرانه؛ کافکا در ساحل؛ نویسنده: هاروکی موراکامی؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز یازدهم ماه نوامبر سال 2007 میلادی
عنوان: کافکا در کرانه؛ نویسنده: هاروکی موراکامی؛ مترجم: مهدی غبرائی؛ تهران، نیلوفر، 1386، در 608 ص، شابک: 9
Raya راية
Jan 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

مراجعة مشتركة قام بكتابتها كلّ من أحمد شاهين وراية

Ahmed Hussein ShaheenAhmed Hussein Shaheen

"كلّ منّا يفقد شيئاً عزيزاً عليه، فُرصاً، إمكانيات، مشاعر لا يمكننا استعادتها أبداً. كل هذا جزء من معنى كوننا نعيش. ولكن في داخل رؤوسنا – أو هذا ما أتصوّره أنا – نخزّن الذكريات في غرفة صغيرة هناك. غرفة كالرفوف في هذه المكتبة، ولنعي الأعمال التي كتبتها قلوبنا، علينا أن نصنّفها وننظّمها ببطاقات، ونزيل عنه الغبار من حين لآخر، ونجدّد لها الهواء، ونغيّر الماء في أواني الزهور، بكلمات أخرى، ستعيش للأبد في مك
Em Lost In Books
Surreal. Poignant. Magical. Weird. And a classic Murakami from beginning to end.

This was my third book by Mr. Murakami. 1Q84, I enjoyed but I don’t think I will be recommending it to anyone. Then came Norwegian Woods which I loved and have recommended to many friends. But Kafka on the Shore held a special place in the hearts of my friends who have read Murakami. This seems to be their favourite. So I went into this with high expectations, and Mr. Murakami did not disappoint.

Story starts with th
“What I think is this: You should give up looking for lost cats and start searching for the other half of your shadow.”
Haruki Murakami -- Kafka on the Shore


There are a few writers, very few, whose worlds I love to inhabit. Woolf is one of them; so too is Joyce, Chekhov another, as are Proust and Tolstoy. I can now add to that list, Haruki Murakami.

As I've stated before, I was late to the the Murakami banquet, but once I arrived I was treated to a maganificent feast, and now I have been treated
May 10, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
No wonder Kafka on the Shore was on the New York Times "10 Best Books of 2005" list. It's one of the most engaging and magical pieces of literature I've read. Reality is unclear. The book presses the boundaries of what exists around the characters versus what exists in their minds. Powerful forces guide the characters--some known, some unknown. Odd things happen within the context of everyday Japan. Mackarel rains from the sky. A metaphysical overseer appears under the guise of Colonel Sanders; ...more
Sherif Metwaly

عن الحب الذي لم نفهم له معنى ولم نجد له سببًا، عن خيبات الأمل التي لم نرتكب ذنبًا كي نعاني مرارتها، عن هؤلاء الذين يرحلون دون إيضاح أسباب الرحيل، وعن هؤلاء الذين يعطوننا الدفء والحنان دون مقابل، عن عبثية قراراتنا وجنون الحياة والبشر، عن الأرواح الخاوية التي تقضي أيامها تتسائل كيف السبيل إلى التئام جروح الروح، عن مرارة الهزيمة ونشوة الانتصار، عن الذكريات التي تبقينا أحياءً بعد أن نرحل، عن سر البسمة اللطيفة التي يفاجئنا بها أحدهم في الطريق دون سابق معرفة، عن كل لحظات الصمت التي نهرب إليها من قبح ا
Dec 16, 2011 rated it really liked it
The simplistic writing in "Kafka on the Shore" contrasts pretty sharply with the book's complicated themes. Perplexing & ultimately mind-bending, Murakami helps his reader out by using prose that's as unpretentious as possible. He gives us clues as to how to get out of the labyrinth he's constructed in one piece by utilizing images & motifs, allegory and metaphor, constructing an entire world that seems to fit like a transparency over our own. There are different levels of the mind, and ...more
Nov 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
يستلهم هاروكي موراكامي نفسه
يفككها ويأخذ محتوياتها ليصنع منها شخصياته
هو الصبي المراهق المتمرد على الثقافة الأبوية، يتنكر بقناع كافكا ويرتدي قميصه ويتشرب اغترابه...
وهو الشاب الذي قتله أصحابه بطريق الخطأ في فورة غضبهم السياسي...
وهو الحاكي بصوت شهرزاد التي تكتب أغنية وحيدة لحبيب ستستعيد صورته في الخريف...
وهو ناكاتا المتحدث مع القطط الذي يستقبل رسائل من بشر يخفون معاناتهم في كتابات تتناثر في رياح الزمن مع رماد الوقت...
وهو قط يبحث عمن يفهم لغته...
وهو الشرقي الذي غزته ثقافة الغرب...
وهو السائق ال
Jan 07, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
رواية عن مراهق ياباني محب للقراءة هرب من منزله و المدرسة... و تتقاطع هذه القصة مع قصة رجل ياباني مسن معاق ذهنيا يحدّث القطط... و كثير من الأحداث الغريبة المتداخلة مع بعضها... و كثير من الحديث عن الموسيقى و الأدب و الكتب و الفلسفة و الحياة و اللاوعي و الأحلام
أجواء القصة غرائبية و فنتازية... و الحبكة بحد ذاتها مشوقة جدا... و جدير بالذكر أيضا أن الترجمة متقنة
أنهيت صفحاتها السبعمئة في أقل من ثلاث أيام... بيد أني فور إنهائها شعرت بأنها اختفت... و كأني لم أقرأ شيئا... فهي لم تولد فيّ أي فكرة من اي نوع
Sep 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
كيف يا هاروكي موراكامي؟ كيف تكتب حكاية تتجاوز الستمائة صفحة يقرؤها قارئ شديد البطء مثلي في عشرة أيام؟ كيف سحبتَ مني جزءا من روحي (أو شطرا من ظِلِّي، بكلماتك أنت!) لأصير بنصف روح فقط طوال الأيام العشرة التي كنت أقرأ فيها الحكاية (أو الأيام العشرة التي حدثَت فيها الحكاية، برؤيتك أنت!)؟ لا أعرف، ولن أعرف على الأرجح.
الحكاية كلها يبدأ طرفها من عند (كافكا) الفتى الذي يقرر - في يوم عيد ميلاده الخامس عشر - أن يهرب من أبيه وظلاله المخيفة. ويبدأ طرفها الآخر من عند (ناكاتا) العجوز - ذكَّرني كثيرا بـ(فورست
Ahmed Oraby
Aug 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
موراكامي موراكامي موراكامي
هذا اللعين، العجيب، هذا الرجل المجنون. مجنون فقط؟ لا أظن
لعل أصدق وصف قرأته لهذا الرجل هو وصف صديقي شادي، أنه رجل: "حشّاش" حقًا، لا يمكن لرجل طبيعي أن يكتب مثل هذا العمل. هل صنعه موراكامي، أن أن الرواية هي من صنعته؟
طوال 600 صفحة ويزيد، كنت أشعر بحالة عجيبة للغاية
ما هذا؟ هل هذا الشيء واقعي حقًا؟ قطط تتكلم، صخور تتهامس، عالم موازي، سماء تمطر علقًا وأسماكًا، شخصيات حقيقية، لا تدرك إن كانت حقيقية أم أنه مجرد وهم!
أصابتني الحيرة الشديدة أثناء القراءة، لم أستطع أن أصدق ما أقرأ
Ian "Marvin" Graye
Is Your Figure Less Than Greek?

Early in "Kafka on the Shore”, the 15 year old narrator, Kafka Tamura, warns us that his story is not a fairy tale. The book's title is also the name of a painting and of a song mentioned in the novel, and it describes the one photo Kafka's father has kept in his drawer. But what Kafka neglects to tell us is that his story is a myth of epic, ancient Greek proportions.

Murakami has concocted a contemporary blend of Oedipus and Orpheus, East and West, Freud and Jung,
Apr 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami leaves the reader with more questions unanswered than are easily and superficially wound up in a mainstream fiction.

Using subtle fantasy, magic realism, repetition, interweaving symbols and metaphors, the author has created a post-modern heir to Sophocles; and Murakami ties it all together as good as Jeff Lebowski’s rug. This is more finely tuned than Kafka’s absurdist comedy, and more well rounded.

He references and alludes to Greek tragedy, Shakespeare, T
Odai Al-Saeed
Apr 21, 2011 rated it it was amazing
تتقاعس الكلمات عن وصف أسلوب الرواية العظيم ....هاروكي موراكامي اسم لم أقرأ له من قبل ياللخجل....أحتاج لبعض الوقت كي أستفيق من تأثير الرواية الأفيوني وما فعلته بي من خدر ونشوة ثقافية تغلغلت أحداثهاالى فكري المتواضع اذا ما قورنت ببراكين الكاتب الثائرةالخلاقة.......رواية هاروكي تضمنت ثلاثة أحداث تسير في خط متواز ولكنها تتقاطع في نفس الوقت .....انقلابه على السرد النمطي حدث جلي بحد ذاته....... جمع من خلالها المتناهي واللامتناهي في صور جلية.... قسم أشخاص الرواية الى عالم اتسع للجميع فمحدودية الفكر لأش ...more
Oct 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This was my first ever Murakami read. The name in the start attracted my attention and later when I asked a few friends about giving me an opinion on this book, I was told to just have a go at it the first chance that I get. I read the summary of this book on good reads and I wasn't able to make it out if I should go with it or not. Meanwhile, I had a chance to visit NYC. And libraries and bookshops are always my must go places whenever or wherever I get a chance. Well, I bought this book on my ...more
Dana Ilie
Aug 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Murakami has become a firm favourite of mine for his wonderful blend of the metaphysical and magical realism with ordinary life and people.Truly remarkable. Haruki Murakami is a rare author.
بثينة العيسى
أحببت طبقات المعنى التي يصنعها موراكامي. اسم الشخصية كافكا، وكافكا بالألمانية تعني غراب، والشخصية لها ظلٌ مرافق، أو صديق متخيّل، أو ربما ذات منشطرة أخرى "الفتى الذي يدعى كرو" وكرو.. هو أيضًا غراب، وعندما تستحضر كافكا في نصّك فهذا يعني أنك تستحضر الفرد الذي يجابه النظام، في حين يبدو الأمر مع موراكامي.. مثل الفرد الذي يجابه اللا نظام. وهذا يعيدنا إلى ألس وبلاد العجائب، والقطط التي تتكلم في الرواية تذكرنا بهذا أيضًا.. وهكذا فإن قراءة هذا الكتاب أمرٌ يشبه قراءة مكتبة، وهي مغامرة جديرة بوقتك حتمًا.
Aug 03, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: The noble Samurai warrior, or that indie guy who works at the used CD shop
What just happened? Who? What? I’m sorry, what?

This is how it starts:
“You’re going to love this book.” Someone says to someone else. “I loved this book, and I know you’re going to love this book.”

Someone said this to my friend, and she read the book, and she thought, “eh.”

But there were more people out there. They love this book! This book is the book that will change everything! If they were to build a time machine and travel back in time with several copies of this book, and if they we
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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
“Memories warm you up from the inside. But they also tear you apart.” 15024 likes
“If you remember me, then I don't care if everyone else forgets.” 5955 likes
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