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South of the Border, West of the Sun (1998)

by Haruki Murakami

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5,3371071,549 (3.82)144
A successful Japanese nightclub owner, husband, and father risks everything to be reunited with his childhood sweetheart.
  1. 40
    Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami (whymaggiemay)
    whymaggiemay: In my opinion, a much better book.
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» See also 144 mentions

English (73)  Spanish (9)  French (8)  German (5)  Dutch (4)  Norwegian (2)  Portuguese (Portugal) (2)  Hungarian (1)  Danish (1)  Italian (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (107)
Showing 1-5 of 73 (next | show all)
47
  revirier | Dec 13, 2021 |
Another Murakami another Favorite. Collecting every book written by Haruki Murakami was the best decision I made.

The book is about Hajime, an only child in what feels like a world of people with brothers and sisters. Growing up he had just one other friend that was an only child as well, Shimamoto. Having lost contact with her after moving away he thought he would never see her again.
Hajime a married guy in his thirties has two daughters. Running a Jazz club and providing for his family. All seems normal until a woman walks in that reminds him of his childhood friend.

This book was amazing. Having around only 200 pages really did this book justice. Not a single page was drawn out while every detail was still there. After reading what the book was about I was immediately drawn to the idea of the main character being an only child. As someone who doesn’t have any brothers of sisters I think it’s a subject that’s not really discussed much. The idea of having someone deal with that while also having the usual Murakami elements was a real treat.
The only thing I could name that resembles a slight form of criticism is that Murakami usually has his themes and stories cut out for him. It’s always the same guy struggling with life in general and finding some mysterious woman who shakes up his whole world. Not saying that’s a bad thing it’s just that because I want to read everything by him I have to take my time and not read too much in one go.

Starting Murakami or a longtime fan? This book is perfect for anyone wanting to get a taste of what this writer can do. ( )
  luclicious | Sep 20, 2021 |
I fancied a short book so opted to pick this off my TBR and give it a shot. I have loved the previous books I've read by Murakami this year and hoped this would not let me down.

Hajime bears a lot of similarities with Murakami himself in that he has a love of literature and opens a Jazz bar in Japan. Music plays a huge part in this book and somehow Murakami manages to really pick the perfect story for the music. Star Crossed Lovers by Duke Ellington is mentioned a few times in the book so I decided to dig it up on youtube. In short, its perfect for the story, or the story is perfect for the tune.

The female characters are melancholic, mysterious women who rarely let us into their inner thoughts. I always find the female characters far more interesting than the male ones and it make me wonder what happened to Murakami in his early life to lead him to create the female characters that he does.

Like Norwegian Wood this book creates wonderful dream like images in my mind. I don't know how he catches the mood in the way he does, he is like a god damn wizard :smile: He manages to grab my emotions like no other writer and he really gets inside my head and my heart. After finishing this I felt pretty emotionally drained, again, I have no idea how he does this.

I have more to say but I don't know what or how. This is a book that will resonate in my head for a long time to come. ( )
  Brian. | Jun 19, 2021 |
Murakami Chronicles 06: SOUTH OF THE BORDER, WEST OF THE SUN
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KBgLqU40ufg ( )
  chrisvia | Apr 30, 2021 |
Although it is a small book, it provoked many feelings and I felt that it was quite different to Murakami's other novels. I usually can relate very much to Murakami's protagonists, however to be honest I thought Hajime was a selfish asshole and I didn't like him, not one bit.

However this book was powerful, the decisions you make in your life are extraordinarily important and really no matter how hard you try, you can never go back. I feel that Murakami was trying to convey this particular message through this novel and he really hit the nail on the head.

Despite Hajime being a total asshole (although it takes good writing for me to hate a character with so much passion) A very memorable read. ( )
  MandaTheStrange | Oct 7, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 73 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (17 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Haruki Murakamiprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bandini, DitteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bandini, GiovanniTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fennema, ElbrichTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gabriel, PhilipTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Porta, LourdesTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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My birthday is January 4, 1951. The first week of the first month of the first year of the second half of the twentieth century.
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Gli esseri umani, a volte, sono destinati, per il solo fatto di esistere, a fare del male a qualcuno.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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A successful Japanese nightclub owner, husband, and father risks everything to be reunited with his childhood sweetheart.

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