Bookstores celebrate the release of Haruki Murakami's newest novel 'Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage'

Celebrations include karaoke and a film contest that will enable the winner to go on his or her own Tsukuru Tazaki-like pilgrimage.

'Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage' is by Haruki Murakami.

With the publication date of “Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage” quickly approaching, various bookstores are planning celebrations.

"Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki," Murakami's latest novel, was published in his native country of Japan in April of last year and, as reported by Monitor contributor Husna Haq, it quickly became a bestseller there, selling one million copies the first week and inspiring midnight lines of customers waiting to  buy the book the night before its publication.

Now midnight parties for “Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki” are coming to the US, where the novel will be released on Aug. 12. According to industry newsletter Shelf Awareness, Community Bookstore of Brooklyn is holding a “Karaoke Murakami” event, which will include Japanese food and a raffle for signed copies of the novel.

At the midnight party at Square Books of Oxford, Miss., customers will be encouraged to share their own Tsukuru Tazaki-like information, such as a color that they believe represents them and a dream that has been a big part of their lives. Unabridged Bookstore of Chicago will be playing a “Murakami-inspired playlist,” according to the store’s Facebook page, and also offering signed copies of the novel.

Brazos Bookstore of Houston will have "Murakami-inspired activities and games (The Wind-Up Bird Piñata! Pin the Kafka on the Shore! The Wild Sheep Count!)," according to its website, as well as offering a coloring book titled "What I Talk About When I Talk About Coloring" that was created by the bookstore's workers.

In Seattle, the Elliott Bay Book Company is planning a trivia contest and a black-and-white costume contest, among other activities, while the celebration at New York City's Three Lives & Company will include a raffle for signed copies of the book and music. 

Meanwhile, a competition in Australia and New Zealand asked fans create seven-second videos through Instagram, drawing from Murakami’s work. Fans who entered qualified to win $3,000 to enable them to travel on their own pilgrimage like Murakami’s character Tsukuru Tazaki, who in the book goes on a trip to visit old friends. 

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