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Kafka on the Shore

4.13  ·  Rating Details ·  193,221 Ratings  ·  13,121 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
Hardcover, 505 pages
Published January 6th 2005 by The Harvill Press (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)

Community Reviews

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Vanessa
Jul 15, 2007 Vanessa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
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 Marzooqi
Apr 13, 2013 Mohamed Al Marzooqi 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
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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
0
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
0104
وربما اجمل مافي رحلة كافكا هي الحوار الثقافي الفني بالمكتبة الرائعة, وإن طال
02
ولكن الامور تتأزم وتزداد غرابة وغموض ودموية..لكافكا من جهه وناكاتا من اخري
0305
ثم تزداد الاحداث الغريبة والسريالية في رحلة البحث
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Paquita Maria Sanchez
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
ايمان
Apr 14, 2012 ايمان 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
...more
Jeffrey Keeten
Aug 25, 2014 Jeffrey Keeten 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.

Why?

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
...more
Garima

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
...more
K.D. Absolutely
Feb 20, 2010 K.D. Absolutely 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
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Jr Bacdayan
Jan 11, 2014 Jr Bacdayan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
j
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
...more
Kelly
May 10, 2007 Kelly 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
Raya  Ka'abneh
Jan 18, 2016 Raya Ka'abneh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition



لقد انتهيت الآن من قراءة كافكا على الشاطئ...
أشعر بحزن غامر وبرغبة عارمة بالبكاء... لا أريدها أن تنتهي.. لا يجب للسحر أن ينتهي أبداً...
رواية سريالية مجنونة.. سأصفها بالجنون.. كل ما فيها مجنون.. غريب.. ساحر.. يشدّك إليها لتعيش في أدق تفاصيلها وتصبح جزءاً منها..
تمنيت أن تكون الرواية من مليون صفحة وربما أكثر..
نادرة تلك الكتب أو الرويات التي تسحرك من أول سطر فيها..
قصتان متوازيتان متقطعتان ساحرتان هذيانيتان مجنونتان غرائبيتان!
أتمنى بأني استطيع الرسم لكنت رسمت الفتى كافكا تامورا، وجدي ناكاتا، وهوشين
...more
أحمد
Sep 15, 2012 أحمد 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
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Ahmed Oraby
Aug 15, 2013 Ahmed Oraby 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
م
...more
Salma
Jan 07, 2010 Salma 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
...more
Ian "Marvin" Grayejoy
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,
...more
Fatima
Jan 09, 2016 Fatima 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
Odai Alsaeed
Apr 21, 2011 Odai Alsaeed rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
Kay
Dec 20, 2011 Kay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kay by: a cat and a crow walk into a bar...
This is my first Murakami, and I already know that it won't be my last.

This is one of the strangest books I've read. It stretches the boundaries of belief, and when it breaks through into the realm of pure magic, we discover the journey has only begun.

The story is told from two different perspectives. In the first, Kafka Tamura is a fifteen-year-old boy who runs away from home to escape a terrifying prophecy that he will kill his father and sleep with both his mother and sister. Eventually, he
...more
فهد الفهد
كافكا على الشاطئ

كل من قرأ هذه الرواية وقع في ذات الحيرة، ووصل إلى ذات النهاية، فهو إما خرج مبهوراً بأجوائها وإن لم يفهم ما الذي حدث؟ وكيف حدث؟ - فالروايات لا تقدم تفسير لغرائبيتها -، أو خرج غاضباً ممتعضاً من كل هذه الغرائبية، كارهاً للرواية ولشخوصها.

هذا كله يطرح مسألة الغرائبية والرمزية المكثفة في الأدب، هل هي عبثية؟ بحيث يشكل العبث ذاته موقف من الحياة والمجتمع؟ أم أنها تستخدم كرمز لموقف فلسفي أو سياسي؟ في كافكا على الشاطئ لدينا الكثير من الرموز المنثورة، ولدينا غرائبية تركت لتفسيرات القارئ.

م
...more
Fabian
Dec 16, 2011 Fabian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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 and 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 af ...more
Rinda Elwakil

العزيز ماروكامي:

بلغني الكثير عن جنونك، بلغني أن هذه هي الأكثر جنونًا، حياتي مليئة بالجنون مؤخرا سيّد موراكامي..تُري هل ستأسرني للحد الذي يدفعني لإتمام عمل بهذا الحجم؟ ام سوف أرجيها لوقت لاحق أكثر إملالا لتحدث بعض الإثارة؟

********************************************

تستحق القراءة و بشدة

من أجمل و أمتع ما قرأت في 2015

ربما اقرأها مرة أخري قريبا..أرشح للقراءة بشدة.


عزيزي موراكامي
شكرا علي السحر.
Lyn
Apr 09, 2014 Lyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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
...more
Marita
Mr Murakami, I'm delighted that I found my way back to your writing. I hadn't intended a re-read, and indeed I had forgotten that I had read this novel, (it’s not your writing, but my failing memory!) but as soon as I started reading I remembered, and I simply could not put the book down.

Where does one start reviewing a novel that offers so much? It brims with allusions to Greek mythology, Japanese and Western literature, Western music, and it playfully explores several ideas.

The chapters of the
...more
Muhammad Galal
-- " يومًا ما ستقتلُ أباك ، وستنام مع أمّك ، وستعاشر أختك "
فرّ هاربًا من نبوءة أبيه ، فهل ينجح ؟
-- أعتذر في البداية عن طول المراجعة .
-- بمثل هذه الأعمال ، يرتفع شأن الأدباء ، ويتمتّع القرّاء .
-- أرشحّها لأصحاب الذوق الرفيع .
-- جميل أن تشعر بأدقّ التفاصيل من حولك كما شعر بها موراكامي من خلال شخصيّاته ..
-- دائمًا أكرّر أنّ الكاتب كثير التفاصيل زاخر الإبداع .
-- انضمّ يا موراكامي إلى إخوتك من المبدعين الآخرين .
-- جمال الكاتب في بساطته ، في رسمه الابتسامة على.وجهك ، والرواية بها الكثير من المواقف
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ياسمين ثابت

لو قولت لاي حد اقرا رواية يابانية تزيد عن 600 صفحة بتتكلم عنن عجوز بيكلم القطط ومراهق هرب من البيت وقابل ست عندهاخمسين سنة وحبها وهي صغيرة وكان بيشوفها فيما يشبه الحلم وكان هربان من لعنة ابوه المهبول....اكيد حيرميني باللي في رجله :)

انا نفسي لو كنت اعرف ان ده موضوعها ماكنتش قريتها ولولا انه كان مطلوب مني قرائها في اسبوع واحد يمكن ماكنتش تشجعت وقريتها
بداية الرواية كمان غير مشجعة لانها بطيئة وتخليك تقول في نفسك ايه الكاتب الغريب ده.؟؟؟ انا ناقصك يا اخويا بدماغك العجيبة دي

لكن الرواية دي عالم ساحر
ال
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Jeff
Aug 03, 2007 Jeff rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: The noble Samurai warrior, or that indie guy who works at the used CD shop
Really?
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
...more
Mohamed Shady
Aug 15, 2013 Mohamed Shady rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition


" محمد .. ابقى اسألى عندك فى السور على رواية اسمها كافكا على الشاطئ "
" كافا على الشاطئ ؟ ايه الاسم غريب ده ؟ دى بتتكلم عن كافكا ؟ "
"لأ .. دى رواية لكاتب يابانى إسمه هاروكى موراكامى "
" هاروكى مورا ايه ؟ حلوة دى ؟ "
" آه سمعت .. بيقولوا حلوة جدًا "
" حاضر هسألك عليها .. ولو كده اجيب نسخة لنفسى "
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"الرواية ب 120 جنيه يا هدى ! "
" لأ خلاص ... ماله ال pdf ؟؟ "
" نستنى كده يمكن تنزل فى السور والا حاجة "
" أوك "

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"الرواية نزلت عندنا فى النبى دانيال"
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Megha
Aug 24, 2009 Megha rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviews

Not a complete dis-appointment, but probably not worth the time I spent reading it either. Especially when it took me 200+ pages to get into it and some of the chapters were a chore to get through.
Most of the things which I love about Murakami's writing are missing in Kafka on the shore. I missed the endearing humor which I had so enjoyed in Hard-boiled.. and A Wild Sheep Chase. I missed the music of the words which brought to life the prose of Norwegian Wood. I missed the splendid descriptions
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Andrew Smith
Mar 29, 2014 Andrew Smith rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You’ll need to suspend belief when you read this novel. It’ll also help if you don’t look too closely at the plot nuances surrounding some of the wackier characters you’ll meet along the way. But do this and I’d hope, like me, that you’ll be swept along on an extraordinary journey. First and foremost it’s an enthralling story with compelling lead players (Nakata being my personal favourite) but it also reveals some interesting ideas and insights and asks the reader some challenging questions. It ...more
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  • Thousand Cranes
  • Kitchen
  • I Am a Cat
  • Nip the Buds, Shoot the Kids
  • The Diving Pool: Three Novellas
  • Runaway Horses
  • The Hunting Gun
  • Strangers
  • Islands
  • Hell Screen
  • The Waiting Years
  • London Orbital
  • All She Was Worth
  • The Ark Sakura
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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: 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 Am
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