Another masterpiece of the amazing Murakami. The book was published in 2002 and it brings to us the magic realism that Murakami is known for.
We have two main characters, which seems to be the case in most of Murakami’s works. One is the 15 year old Kafka Tamura, and the other one, an old man named Nakata.
On his 15th birthday, Kafka decides that he should run away from home, which he does. He packs a few things, takes some money from home, and he hits the road. We learn that he lives only with his father. His mother left them with his sister when he was four years old. His father is not the best parent in the world, and that’s what makes Kafka to run away.
A few weird things happen throughout his journey, and he ends up living in a private library. Here he meets a young boy named Oshima, and Miss Saeki. Even more weird things are happening to him, but I’ll leave that for you to find out.
Nakata on the other hand, is a completely different story. He had an accident when he was very young. A very strange accident which left him, as he says, stupid and empty. He can’t read, he is old to work, but guess what, Mister Nakata can talk to cats.
Like Kafka, he also has a few adventures of his own, when finally, he goes out to find something. He doesn’t know what that is, but he is sure that once he sees it, he’ll know.
Throughout the book the paths of the two characters are coming closer and closer but they always fail to meet.
This is one of the best works from Murakami. He leaves us with a few questions unanswered, and that is the beauty of it. He makes you believe in all those realities that twist your mind.
If you have never read Murakami, this would be a good place to start. And if you read it, I’m sure you have this piece of art on your reading list.
PS: The photo is by Oneirio, on deviantart.