Murakami has the uncanny ability to perfectly describe some of life’s most difficult emotions, offer discerning advice and distill the human experience into a single paragraph.
We’ve gathered some of our favourite quotes from his wide range of titles that do just that. Use this list to inspire which of Haruki Murakami’s books you pick up first, or next.
‘If possible, I would like my readers to savor that same emotion when they read my books. I want to open a window in their souls and let the fresh air in. This is what I think of, and hope for, as I write—purely and simply.’
‘It’s all a question of imagination. Our responsibility begins with the power to imagine.'
‘You need to grab whatever chance you have of happiness where you find it, and not worry about other people too much. My experience tells me that we get no more than two or three such chances in a life time, and if we let them go, we regret it for the rest of our lives.'
‘We’re both looking at the same moon, in the same world. We’re connected to reality by the same line. All I have to do is quietly draw it towards me.'
‘I didn't understand then. That I could hurt somebody so badly she would never recover. That a person can, just by living, damage another human being beyond repair.’
‘What people need is beautiful, comforting stories that make them feel as if their lives have some meaning.'
‘I sometimes think that people’s hearts are like deep wells. Nobody knows what’s at the bottom. All you can do is imagine by what comes floating to the surface every once in a while.’
‘As time goes on, you'll understand. What lasts, lasts; what doesn't, doesn't. Time solves most things. And what time can't solve, you have to solve yourself.’
'Spend your money on the things money can buy. Spend your time on the things money can’t buy.’
‘The most important thing we learn at school is the fact that the most important things can’t be learned at school.’
‘In this world, there are things you can only do alone, and things you can only do with somebody else. It’s important to combine the two in just the right amount.’
‘No matter how far you travel, you can never get away from yourself.’
‘It occurred to me what a simple thing reality is, how easy it is to make it work. It’s just reality. Just housework. Just a home. Like running a simple machine. Once you learn to run it, it’s just a matter of repetition. You push this button and pull that lever. You adjust a gauge, put on the lid, set the timer. The same thing, over and over.’