Murakami and Kafka

The most important fact we gleaned from the records was that, medically speaking, the incident had caused no lasting impact on the children.  From right after the event to the present day, the examination and tests consistently indicated no internal or external abnormalities.  The children were leading healthy lives, just as they had before the incident.  Detailed examinations revealed that several of the children had parasites, but nothing out of the ordinary…The one notable thing was that the two-hour span during which the children had been unconscious in the hills was erased from their memory.  As if that part had been extracted in toto.  Rather than a memory loss, it was more a memory lack.

That is from Haruki Murakami’s new Kafka on the Shore.

He is one of the few contemporary writers always worth reading.  His Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche is a minor (and neglected) classic of social science.  Or do you love intellectual-geeky science fiction, but think you have run dry?  Try his Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World.  The best "literary" introduction is probably A Wild Sheep Chase.