Haruki Murakami is a contemporary Japanese writer. Murakami has been translated into 50 languages and his best-selling books have sold millions of copies. His most notable works include A Wild Sheep Chase (1982), Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World (1985), Norwegian Wood (1987), The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle (1994-1995), Kafka on the Shore (2002) and 1Q84 (2009-2010). He has also translated a number of English works into Japanese, from Raymond Carver to J. D. Salinger. Murakami’s fiction, still criticized by Japan’s literary establishment as un-Japanese, was influenced by Western writers from Chandler to Vonnegut by way of Brautigan. It is frequently surrealistic and melancholic or fatalistic, marked by a Kafkaesque rendition of the “recurrent themes of alienation and loneliness” he weaves into his narratives. Murakami was born on January 12, 1949.