He may not have won the Nobel Prize for Literature, but best-selling Japanese author Haruki Murakami (and his publisher) is probably laughing his way to the bank. According to information company Oricon Inc., his newest novel Shikisai wo Motanai Tazaki Tsukuru to Kare no Junrei no Toshi (“Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage”) is the biggest-selling book in Japan for the year 2013.
The list features books published during the 12-month period of November 19, 2012 to November 17, 2013. It does not however give information as to how many copies the books sold, but Murakami’s publisher Bungei Shunju says they have printed 1.05 million copies in the Japanese language alone since they released it in April this year. The English language version is set to come out in 2014 and since Murakami is a huge draw in the international market, it is expected that this one to become another hit.
Novels did particularly well in the Top 10 this year, with Naoki Hyakuta’s Kaizoku to Yobareta Otoko (“The Man Who Was Called a Pirate”), and Jun Ikeido’s Rosujene no Gyakushu (“The Lost Generation Strikes Back”) also making it to the best-sellers list. However, it was still a list dominated by non-fiction works, like self-help books and how-to manuals. Second place in the Top 10 list was a book by a cancer specialist warning people against the dangers of cancer patients having surgery too early.
Murakami was the top pick by betting sites before the announcement of the Nobel literature prize, but eventually lost to Canada’s Alice Munro. He is always a strong candidate every year, but has yet to achieve that particular honor, even as he rakes in the dough with each new novel that he puts out. His newest one is about a man trying to come to terms with his past, sticking to the style that has made him popular, with pop culture references, surreal imagery and lyrical prose.
[ via Inquirer ]