There doesn’t have to be a way read his books. It’s just I am an avid reader and aware of what Haruki Murakami does. He is a different genre in himself like Kafka. You read his books and end up wondering ‘What the hell just happened?’ It takes time to make sense. So, from some help from the internet here is how you should go about reading Murakami:

First, let’s talk about the surrealist novels.

Don’t dive in his world with, The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. It’s one of  most complex and best novel Murakami has written. If you are not used to his writing style and alternating narratives, it’s going to knock you out. But if you love risks, go ahead my friend. There shall be no stopping you.

This is only a suggestion very researched suggestions, which you are free to overlook:

  1. Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
  2. Kafka on the Shore
  3. 1Q84
  4. The Wind Up Bird Chronicle
  5. After Dark

Let’s get to real(ish) novels which are fictional without alternate universes and you can relate to easily, that is:

  1. Norwegian Wood
  2. Sputnik Sweetheart
  3. South of the Border, West of the Sun
  4. Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage

Then there’s the loose trilogy; the rat trilogy and Dance, Dance, Dance. Murakami considers them immature and flimsy. He didn’t want them to be translated in English. So, do the author a favour and read them after reading his best works. Okay?

  1. Hear the Wind Sing
  2. Pinball, 1973
  3. A Wild Sheep Case
  4. Dance, Dance, Dance

You don’t need to follow any order for his short stories or the non-fiction work. It’s all awesome and make you see the world in a new light.


I feel like a Murakami expert though I am not. The list is a bit inspired from from Bookoblivion blog.