MurakamiInterview with Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami in The Asahi Shimbun

For the legions of admirers of Haruki Murakami, the recent release of his latest best-seller, “Shikisai wo Motanai Tazaki Tsukuru to, Kare no Junrei no Toshi” (Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage) could be a harbinger of a long hoped-for honor.

When the Nobel Prize in literature is announced in October, bookmakers are favoring the author of such classic works as “Norwegian Wood” and “Kafka on the Shore” to finally be tabbed.

One of those anxiously awaiting the announcement is Mao Danqing, a professor at Kobe International University. Mao dreams of bringing two contemporary literary giants face to face: Murakami and China’s Mo Yan, the author of such historical sagas as “Red Sorghum Clan,” who last year edged out the Japanese author for the coveted Nobel Prize.

Haruki MurakamiJapanese writer long tipped for Nobel recognition poised to see off rivals including Joyce Carol Oates and Ko Un, say bookies (The Guardian)

After years of hovering in the wings, this could be Haruki Murakami‘s year to clinch the Nobel prize for literature – at least if you go by the odds offered by Ladbrokes on the Japanese author, who is 3-1 favourite.

Other favoured contenders include US author Joyce Carol Oates (6-1), Hungarian writer Peter Nádas (7-1), South Korean poet Ko Un (10-1), and Alice Munro, the short story writer from Canada (12-1).

Haruki MurakamiFollowing huge success in Japan, Colourless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is expected in English next year: The Guardian

Following what has become customary hysteria, and seven-figure sales, at the release of a new Haruki Murakami novel in Japan, his growing English-language fanbase can expect to read the translation of his latest next year, the Ashai Shimbun reports.