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Haruki Murakami celebrated 40 years of being a novelist with a rare public reading of his next book.

Corinne Segal

December 17, 2019, 4:33pm

Haruki Murakami ended a nearly 25-year streak of avoiding public readings today, when he held an event to mark four decades since his authorial debut.

He appeared with novelist Mieko Kawakami, who won the Akutagawa Prize in 2008 and interviewed him for the recently published A Horned Owl Takes Off at Dawn: A long long interview by Kawakami Mieko. Murakami, 70, read for 30 minutes from a new novel, which he said was titled Confessions of a Shinagawa Monkey, and appeared relaxed, the Associated Press reported.

“I’m a writer, and to write in my study is my privilege,” he told The New Yorker‘s Deborah Treisman earlier this year. “I made up my mind at one time that I wouldn’t do anything but write—that was my decision.” Unless, as he goes on to mention, that thing is DJ-ing! If you’re curious, his picks are here, and The Beach Boys are involved.

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