After The Quake
Another Murakami book, and very entertaining like the others I've read. (I have a couple more awaiting my delectation, and it's interesting to note that Vintage are reissuing the whole series currently in a new style of jackets following parent company Random House's takeover of Harvill last year).
After The Quake is a series of short stories, all of which take place in the aftermath of the Kobe earthquake in 1995. None of the stories is interlinked, and I liked some more than others. Murakami tends to stick to themes he knows well - disillusioned young at college or at work, broken marriages, and the imagination.
It's interesting to read how long his works take to be translated in the west. His last paperback in the UK was Sputnik Sweetheart which was published in mass market paperback in the UK in October 2002 following a trade paperback publication in May 2001. The Japanese original publication was April 1999. Probably quite quick considering the usual pace of translations appearing in English (I still remember seeing that the latest Donna Tart novel appeared in Dutch in the week of its English appearance). After the Quake doesn't follow this pattern because the stories were originally published in various publications over a period of time.