After the Quake Paperback – 6 Mar 2003
|New from||Used from|
Audio Download, Unabridged
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"In a dance with the delights of Murakami's imagination we experience the limitless possibilities of fiction. With these stories Murakami expands our hearts and minds yet again" (The Times)
"Ushers the reader into a hallucinatory world where the real and surreal merge and overlap, where dreams and real-life nightmares are impossible to tell apart...this slender volume, deftly translated by Jay Rubin, may serve as a succinct introduction to his imaginative world...Lewis Carroll meets Kafka with a touch of Philip K. Dick" (New York Times)
"Dazzlingly elegant...In a world where even the ground beneath our feet can't be relied on, imagination becomes less of a luxury and more of a duty. It's an obligation that Murakami is busily making his raison d'etre, to our very great advantage" (Guardian)
"In the world of literary fiction, Haruki Murakami is unquestionably a superstar...Many critics have touted Murakami for the Nobel Prize. If he can stay on this kind of form, he could be in with a chance" (Scotland on Sunday)
"Murakami is a unique writer, at once restrained and raw, plainspoken and poetic" (Washington Post)
Tales of upheaval and confusion, longing and love in the aftermath of the Kobe earthquakeSee all Product description
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Top customer reviews
All the main characters are single or separated, and all feel isolated and empty, naïve in matters of love and life. In "UFO in Kashiro," an abandoned husband agrees to help a friend by delivering a box to Hokkaido, only to discover that the box "contains the something that was inside you. You'll never get it back." In "Landscape in Flatiron," a 40-ish artist and a young girl meet and build a bonfire. "The fire itself has to be free," he remarks, while the young girl comments on the emptiness of her life, and they make plans for the rest of the evening. In "All God's Children Can Dance," a young man pursues the man he believes to be his father to an abandoned baseball field, "chasing the tail of the darkness inside [him]." "Thailand" features a doctor in her 40's who is told that she must get rid of the stone inside her and that "living and dying are, in a sense, of equal value."
In the last two stories, "Superfrog Saves Tokyo," and "Honey Pie," Murakami begins to offer more hope and direction to his characters. Superfrog, a 6' tall frog who needs a plodding banker to help him fight the Worm and save Tokyo from an earthquake, due to strike soon, teaches that "the ultimate value of our lives is decided not by how we win but by how we lose." And in "Honey Pie," which brings all these themes together, a young man has an opportunity to find happiness with the only woman he's ever loved and her young daughter, and determines that he will "never let anyone...try to put them into that crazy box, not even if the sky should fall or the earth crack open with a roar."
Despite the fact that Murakami states his themes overtly, the stories themselves are enigmatic and the action within them unpredictable, and the reader will ponder his meanings and his images long after the stories are finished. Wonderful descriptions, small details which reflect the characters' class and educational level, sympathetic and well drawn characters, and a sense that the world is absurd and illogical make this short collection unforgettable. Mary Whipple
Now, characters and incidents keep coming to mind for no apparent reason, and they seem so familiar that I try and dig back in my memory to find out where they come from…and it turns out they’re from “After the Quake”. There are so many characters and moments that have stayed with me after having read these stories, though I didn’t necessarily expect them to. For so short a book, Murakami certainly manages impact.
The Kobe earthquake as the common character to the stories works very well. It provides a sense of community that the individual stories don’t radiate, with their fractured relationships, drifters and people uncertain of their place. The earthquake presents a common timeframe, which unifies the other characters for the reader, in a way we feel couldn’t happen in their reality.
I noted with interest that Murakami has translated Raymond Carver’s work into English. This made me smile, as his stories to me resemble Carver’s in many ways. They are quite unsensational in their telling, concerned with the detail, the characters, as much as by events. But just as I felt comfortable in this world, Murakami packs a punch with “Super Frog Saves Tokyo” – certainly surreal! But even then, sensationalism doesn’t get in the way, and you find yourself half believing, if you read the story literally, that a giant frog saving Tokyo from an earthquake isn’t so strange!
I note the recommendation in another review here that a second reading ensures these stories have their full impact, and I can well believe it. They have left their impression on me, and part-remembered incidents, but not their whole. I look forward to re-reading them.
The stories are simply engaging, absorbing, and as beautiful as I have come to expect from Murakami.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews
Look for similar items by category