Harukists, the die-hard fans of Japan's leading author, Haruki Murakami, gathered late at night Thursday in bookstores nationwide to purchase the writer's long-awaited latest work, which went on sale as soon as the clock struck midnight.

The book is titled "Kishidancho Goroshi" ("Killing Commendatore"). Two volumes of the title, "Arawareru Idea" and "Utsurou Metaphor," loosely translated as "Appearing Idea" and "Changing Metaphor," were both released on Friday.

The release will be delayed at least a day in Hokkaido due to freight train derailment, according to the publisher.