After Dark by Haruki Murakami
Vintage Digital (ebook), 2004
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
Eyes mark the shape of the city.
The midnight hour approaches in an almost-empty diner. Mari sips her coffee and reads a book, but soon her solitude is disturbed: a girl has been beaten up at the Alphaville hotel, and needs Mari’s help.
Meanwhile Mari’s beautiful sister Eri lies in a deep, heavy sleep that is ‘too perfect, too pure’ to be normal; it has lasted for two months. But tonight as the digital clock displays 00:00, a hint of life flickers across the television screen in her room, even though its plug has been pulled out.
Strange nocturnal happenings or a trick of the night?
The feather wafted upwards, a fine wispy curve, and for seconds it sailed the air.
WHAT I THOUGHT
This was my first time reading Haruki Murakami.
After Dark is one of the best and most challenging books I’ve read in ages. I loved it. This is not my usual sort of book. At times it was like being trapped in some weird, disjoined and trippy dream; the kind of dreams where there are lots of shadows and things you can never quite see. I quite enjoyed being pulled along by Murakami’s amazing, vivid and descriptive writing. I’m not a fan of hard books and tend to get on better with books I can get through fairly quickly. This is the kind of book that reminds you of how good it feels to be completely absorbed in what an author has created between the pages (or between the back and front cover of my Kindle). I thought this was a wonderful, surprising book. I need to read more by this author.
I’d highly recommend After Dark. It’s brilliant, mad and sort of wonderful.