Week 1: 海辺のカフカ - Kafka on the Shore 🏖

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海辺のカフカ - Kafka on the Shore :beach_umbrella: Home Thread

Week 1


Start Date: May 28th
Next Part: Week 2


Week Start Date Chapters Page Count
Week 1 May 28th 0, 1, 2 33

Discussion Rules

  • Please use spoiler tags for major events in the current chapter(s) and any content in future chapters.
  • When asking for help, please mention the chapter and page number. Also mention what version of the book you are reading.
  • Don’t be afraid of asking questions, even if they seem embarrassing at first. All of us are here to learn.
  • To you lurkers out there: Join the conversation, it’s fun! :durtle:


Mark your participation status by voting in this poll.
(Please feel free to update your status whenever you like!)

  • I’m reading along
  • I have finished this part
  • I’m planning to catch up later
  • I’m skipping this book

0 voters


I already started reading a few weeks ago… so I have a small head start.
Especially chapter 2 (I think that’s where the woman’s viewpoint starts?) has me very intrigued. Starting out heavy on the supernatural phenomena. Can’t wait to learn more about that story. The presentation of her account as interview recordings was also really cool. I actually didn’t relate to the boy protagonist that much, as usually is the case for me with 家出 characters. But his destination I am excited to learn more about through Murakami‘s eyes!

I’m wondering how the two different timelines the characters live in are gonna get connected in the end!


Finished. I’m surprised sometimes by the lack of kanji, although that may have been just to highlight the style/protag of the first part. Interesting to see what these totally different feeling stories have in common.


Just finished this weeks part! Due to the chapters being split between the two viewpoints/events, I feel like I’ve just got a little taster of both, but I am intrigued! Got slightly lulled into a false sense of thinking that the writing would be really straightforward by the prologue & first chapter and then the amount of unknown vocab went up considerably for me for the second protagonist.:sweat_smile:


I also just finished this week’s reading. Mostly replies for me:

I fully agree with @Myria - I was bored/uninvested in the 家出 build up and really not feeling it at all, but when I hit chapter 2 I was all in. Love a bit of weird phenomena.

I’m curious where the plotlines intersect, like @morteASD commented. I kind of wonder if the “realness” of カラスと呼ばれる少年 is going to come up as the intermingling point.


I’ve also been wondering about カラス - I quite like that theory! My other potential idea for a link is far less mysterious/fun, but as chapter 2 is part of a written record and we know that protag 1 is going to be living in a library I wonder whether he will come across the written records there :thinking:

Also, I am enjoying both stories so far - then again, I am a sucker for teen coming of age stories so maybe no real surprise that I’m liking protag 1 more than others are.


Same as everyone, I know pretty much nothing about the book and so far I’m intrigued, especially by chapter 2! I’m not very invested in the chapter 1 story yet but that should come.


First week down! I’m definitely enjoying it so far; I’m plenty intrigued by whatever’s going on with the kid running away from home, but chapter 2?? Hello :eyes: I definitely felt the wall of technical government and military terms but I survived and they didn’t seem to be all that important anyway so all good. I’m also getting the sense that カラスと呼ばれる少年 isn’t “real” per se, so I’m curious to see where that goes. With the vibes of chapter 2 it could certainly be some supernatural stuff, but I could also see it being like… his way of thinking about the world? Idk but I’m certainly looking forward to seeing how some of this stuff fits together!


A day late, but I just finished the first week’s reading! :cat2:
I’ve read this book a few years back (in English), and although I don’t remember much of the detail, I do remember the boy’s story being much more engaging than it is now as I re-read it. Perhaps it is because back then I was about the boy’s age, and found his narrative more relatable for that reason? Anyways, I must agree with everyone that the woman’s story seems much more intriguing for the moment being.


lol I’m the exact opposite of everyone. I like the boy’s story (and I’m a decade older than him) and am having trouble slogging through ch 2

Would the story still make sense if I only read the boy’s chapters, does anyone know?


If I remember this correctly, I believe you would miss a solid chunk of important stuff if you only read the boy’s chapters. Would definitely recommend reading it all (even if some parts may feel slow/boring at times) :cat2:

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I also found the start of chapter 2 pretty tough but it does get a bit better after a few pages of dense military stuff so hopefully you can push through!


I managed to get a few pages into it (past the military stuff), but I still just. could not care. Yeah I wonder how the hey she could know that something up in the sky is made of duralumin, but that wasn’t nearly enough to get me to read the the rest, and I ended up just skipping to ch 3

I read in order to not be bored, not to be even more bored than if I weren’t. idk if it’s just the product of the ADHD or what, but I can’t sit through boring things. Slow things, sure, as long as they’re still interesting, but not boring

So, idk if I’m gonna continue with the club or not. I guess we’ll see

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No worries! No need to stress out about this book. If you think it’s boring, then feel free to drop it. Liking a book (or not) is of course a lot about personal preferences, and also about timing, in my experience. If you can find something that suits you better, then go for it! :blush:


If it’s just those chapters you don’t like, we can provide a quick summary and you can keep reading the rest.

Summary of chapter 2 (from what I remember)

During WW2, a school teacher in the countryside takes a bunch of kids to gather mushrooms in the forest. On their way there they see a plane flying high up, that they assume to be American, although the Americans have no record of one of their planes flying there at that time. The kids start gathering mushrooms, and suddenly they all start loosing consciousness for no apparent reason. They have their eyes open, but are totally unresponsive. The teacher is the only left standing and runs back to the school to look for help.


Ah, and I suppose planes are/were made of duralumin, which is how she would know. Now that you mention it, I think I do remember a plane being mentioned, though I forgot it then. I started zoning out too much lol


I think she said that she knew that only American planes were made of duralumin, and that she knew how to distinguish them because the reflection of light is different, and that the thing she saw reflected the light in a way only duralumin planes would.
(At least that’s what I remember from what I understood :sweat_smile:)


I opened the book and played catch-up from this morning! That has to be the most I’ve ever read in one day.

When I’m tired I get kind of anxious, so chapter 2 freaked me out. The description of the kids limp bodies but active eyes watching something “not there” in the distance is :grimacing: On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, I loved the description of lights passing by that was at the end of chapter 1.

I’ve only ever read Murakami books in english, so I’m pleasantly surprised that I can still feel and enjoy the dream-like quality. To be more accurate, I’m actually geeking out at being able to read Murakami in his native language at all.


Guess I’m 2 months late :sweat_smile: but the book does seem interesting. So far it seems like a decent challenge but still readable. I’m happy considering it’s my first read in the advanced club. :upside_down_face:


Hey, welcome! :wave:

No worries! Feel free to follow us if you like.
For the book, given a few people stopped reading by now, I should say there should be some trigger warnings regarding violence against humans and animals and also some sexually explicit contents. If you are ok with that, then yes, I also thought it’s an interesting read so far. We are speculating a lot :sweat_smile:

Some chapters are a bit more difficult than others (different language levels being used for various reasons) but it feels pretty accessible nonetheless. The main challenge for you might be to catch up to us, I guess :grin: We will read the second part right afterwards so it’s actually not impossible to catch up if we look at the book’s both parts :+1: