After Dark

After Dark

eBook - 2010
Average Rating:
Rate this:
A short, sleek novel of encounters set in the witching hours of Tokyo between midnight and dawn, and every bit as gripping as Haruki Murakami's masterworks The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle and Kafka on the Shore .

At its center are two sisters: Yuri, a fashion model sleeping her way into oblivion; and Mari, a young student soon led from solitary reading at an anonymous Denny's into lives radically alien to her own: those of a jazz trombonist who claims they've met before; a burly female "love hotel" manager and her maidstaff; and a Chinese prostitute savagely brutalized by a businessman. These "night people" are haunted by secrets and needs that draw them together more powerfully than the differing circumstances that might keep them apart, and it soon becomes clear that Yuri's slumber-mysteriously tied to the businessman plagued by the mark of his crime - will either restore or annihilate her.

After Dark moves from mesmerizing drama to metaphysical speculation, interweaving time and space as well as memory and perspective into a seamless exploration of human agency - the interplay between self-expression and understanding, between the power of observation and the scope of compassion and love. Murakami's trademark humor, psychological insight, and grasp of spirit and morality are here distilled with an extraordinary, harmonious mastery.

"Eyes mark the shape of the city. Through the eyes of a high-flying night bird, we take in the scene from midair. In our broad sweep, the city looks like a single gigantic creature-or more, like a single collective entity created by many intertwining organisms. Countless arteries stretch to the ends of its elusive body, circulating a continuous supply of fresh blood cells, sending out new data and collecting the old, sending out new consumables and collecting the old, sending out new contradictions and collecting the old. To the rhythm of its pulsing, all parts of the body flicker and flare up and squirm. Midnight is approaching, and while the peak of activity has indeed passed, the basal metabolism that maintains life continues undiminished, producing the basso continuo of the city's moan, a monotonous sound that neither rises nor falls but is pregnant with foreboding."
--from After Dark
Publisher: [Toronto] : Knopf Canada, 2010.
ISBN: 9780307370488
Branch Call Number: E-BOOK
Characteristics: 1 electronic text.
Additional Contributors: OverDrive, Inc


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Andrew Kyle Bacon
Jun 17, 2017

This book is a difficult one to describe. At certain levels it seems to be about the interconnected in a world were people often try to disconnect themselves, but this seems like a very shallow reading of the novel. The story takes place over the course of one night and primarily follows the story of one young lady, Mari, and the people she encounters. There are also other stories dispersed throughout: Mari's sister Eri, a computer programmer, a trombone player, and three women who work at a hotel. There are threads of the narrative that will never be explained or tied up. It isn't the kind of book that dangles bits of information and then ties everything up in a bow at the end. Honestly, there is little character growth throughout the novel, but then again how much can a person change in one night? The book is well written, engaging, brisk, features great characters, and is fun to read. Highly recommended.

Apr 26, 2016

This may differ a little to Murakami's other works but it's still great, love the way it gives the perspectives of multiple characters and how their storylines tie up in some way or another.

Sep 26, 2015

Good to read if you want a light easy introduction to Murakami. Unique, vibrant characters. Surreal explorations mingle with a plot that keeps reader present, immersed in graphic settings typical of Murakami.

Apr 03, 2014

I loved it. I liked how the narrator gave the readers a birds eye view into these peoples lives and played it off quite nicely. Well done, Mr. Murakami.

Apr 11, 2012

Quick read.Thin plot is aided by slice of japan's urban atmosphere...

Apr 06, 2012

Didn’t like it. So many comments on the cover of a book about
what a magnificent and unique work!
Nothing like that. I read it to the end, trying to find those praised qualities for this work - and it came just as an annoyance.
This is similar to those amateur movies that you watch to the end trying to see a "deeper meaning", and in the end remains the same question – what is all about and what for?

Dec 25, 2011

They say it was suppose to be something exceptional. I read it and it is very very ordinary. Nothing to be blown away. Hopefully it'll be different when I do pick up another one of his book. Soyarana!

Nov 27, 2011

Reminds me of hanging out with college friends all night, wandering the city, and talking having random conversations. Not much happens, but it's a lovely sketch of Tokyo in the night hours.


Add a Quote

Mar 15, 2015

The new day is almost here, but the older one is still dragging its heavy skirts. Just as ocean water and river water struggle against each other at a river mouth, the old time and new time clash and blend. Takahashi is unable to tell for sure which side - which world - contains his centre of gravity.

Nov 27, 2011

"It's true, though: time moves in its own special way in the middle of the night," the bartender says, loudly striking a book match and lighting a cigarette. "You can't fight it."

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

Nov 18, 2015

nymmynaomi thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Explore Further

Subject Headings


Find it at JMS

To Top