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Murakami's 12th work of fiction is darkly entertaining and more novella than novel. Taking place over seven hours of a Tokyo night, it intercuts three loosely related stories, linked by Murakami's signature magical-realist absurd coincidences. When amateur trombonist and soon-to-be law student Tetsuya Takahashi walks into a late-night Denny's, he espies Mari Asai, 19, sitting by herself, and proceeds to talk himself back into her acquaintance. Tetsuya was once interested in plain Mari's gorgeous older sister, Eri, whom he courted, sort of, two summers previously. Murakami then cuts to Eri, asleep in what turns out to be some sort of menacing netherworld. Tetsuya leaves for overnight band practice, but soon a large, 30ish woman, Kaoru, comes into Denny's asking for Mari: Mari speaks Chinese, and Kaoru needs to speak to the Chinese prostitute who has just been badly beaten up in the nearby "love hotel" Kaoru manages. Murakami's omniscient looks at the lives of the sleeping Eri and the prostitute's assailant, a salaryman named Shirakawa, are sheer padding, but the probing, wonderfully improvisational dialogues Mari has with Tetsuya, Kaoru and a hotel worker named Korogi sustain the book until the ambiguous, mostly upbeat dénouement. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Other than an unexpected cheerfulness, After Dark is classic Haruki Murakami, featuring themes of loneliness and alienation, carefully crafted characters, Western references (such as an all-night Denny's where Hall & Oates plays in the background), and distinctive magical-realist twists of fate. Critics also praised the impassive, omniscient narration, like a constantly shifting video camera, which renders each scene in magnificent detail. The chief complaint was the brevity of the novel, and the Los Angeles Times felt that Eri's dreamlike scenes missed the mark as well. "For the unfamiliar, it's the perfect appetizer. For the established fan, it's a quick work that is over far too soon" (Denver Post).
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Editorial Reviews
I truly enjoy being shuttled back and forth between all of Murakami's many worlds -- inner and outer. Read morePublished 1 month ago by G. Memi
This was the first novel I read by Haruki Murakami and I liked it.. At times it was a little confusing, but that's the point, what really happens after dark..Published 1 month ago by Melli
Great book, though the ending was a little unclear for me. I love Murakami's stuff!Published 2 months ago by Anna E Engle
Not up to the _Wind-Up Bird Chronicle_ standard, but still a good quick read. All set in one night in Tokyo, written in a cinematic film-noir style. Read morePublished 2 months ago by sparky
This was my first novel by Haruki Murakami that I've read and I absolutely loved it. Perhaps it was because I listened to the audiobook rather than read it out off the page that... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Tracy
Engaging, laced with supernatural, After Dark is uneasy and languid. If you like Murakami's style, this short novel will draw you in. In my opinion, a minor work compared to 10Q84.Published 2 months ago by James R. Malone Jr
Beautifully written and it keeps you guessing. If you do not like things wrapped up with a pretty bow, then you might not like After Dark.Published 3 months ago by Lisa French