Emily's Reviews > After the Quake

After the Quake by Haruki Murakami
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Sep 26, 2007

it was amazing
bookshelves: short-stories
Read in September, 2007

My favorite Murakami short story of all time is "The Kidney Shaped Stone That Moves Everyday." So when I realized halfway through the last story in After the Quake that the main character was the same one from "Kidney Shaped Stone," it was as if the planets had aligned, the clouds parted and a single shaft of sunlight shot down to bathe me in a golden glow; everything was perfect in the universe. And of course "Honey Pie" is now my second favorite Murakami story of all time.

It's a rare writer that can pull off the elegant and sentimental alongside the bizarre and hilarious, but Murakami is one of those writers. The man is truly genius. It took me a long time to figure out how to write this review without sounding like a crazed fangirl. I guess all I can really talk about is the way I feel after reading After the Quake. I felt happy in the way that you do when you hear a song for the first time and realize, Hey, this is really good, but I also felt sad. After the Quake was so brilliant that I didn't want the stories to end, and when they did, I felt like I was saying good-bye to a dear friend.
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02/03/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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David Streever Hi Emily,

I liked your review--this is one of my favorite collections of Murakami, for Honey Pie, Thailand, and Landscape--but are you positive that junpei is the same junpei? I have read... all the stories, and I think he sometimes re-uses names. I am just curious what it was that convinced you they are the same Junpei.

Thank you--

David


Emily Hi David,

I'm not 100% positive that it's the same Junpei, but I am pretty sure, since there are details about Junpei that are the same in each of the stories. For example, in "The Kidney Shaped Stone..." it mentions that in college Junpei fell in love with a girl who then marries his best friend, which I'm assuming is referring to Sayoko and Takatsuki in "Honey Pie." Both stories also mention how Junpei is no longer in contact with his father after a violent argument, and both Junpeis are short story writers. The two Junpeis could very well be different characters, but in my mind I prefer to think of "Honey Pie" as the sequel to "The Kidney Shaped Stone..." I like to think that Sayoko was Jenpei's Number 1 and 3 girl who had real meaning for him. =)


David Streever I'll be honest, I think that's why I rejected your theory at first: I didn't realize that you were seeing Honey Pie following Kidney Shaped Stone! I thought it was the other way around, which made me feel sad.

Now that you put it that way, I happily accept your theory! I went back & re-read it after I wrote my comment to you, and I agree, it is definitely likely.

Thanks for letting me know how your thoughts worked out on this: I really appreciate it, & I'm glad I can read it this way now.


Sheree Tampus I totally agree with you. This is exactly how I felt when I realized that his short story "Fireflies" was basically about Toru in the novel Norwegian Wood. :)


Megan Oh wow! You just blew my mind. I didn't make that connection at all. Like you, "The Kidney-Shaped Stone..." has always been my favorite Murakami short story as well.


Callie Rose Tyler In what book can you find "The Kidney Shaped Stone That Moves Everyday" story?


Megan Callie wrote: "In what book can you find "The Kidney Shaped Stone That Moves Everyday" story?"

Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman :) You can also read it here online or in the 9/26/05 issue of the New Yorker if you have a subscription.


Callie Rose Tyler Megan wrote: "Callie wrote: "In what book can you find "The Kidney Shaped Stone That Moves Everyday" story?"

Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman :) You can also read it here online or in the 9/26/05 issue of the New Y..."


THANKS!


Parisa Dastmalchi After i read your comment the wierdest thing happened. The kidney-shaped stone has always been my favorite Murakami short story as well but I have read all of his works in Farsi and the character's name in kidney-shaped has been translated as yun pei in my version, so when I read your comment i got so confused that i rushed to my book shelf to check and guess what: there was an exact kidney-shaped stone on the shelf and the book was right behind it. I found it several years ago in a trip and totally forgot about it. I am doscovering the stone now lol.


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