José Saramago

Several years ago I read a novel by the Portuguese writer titled The Siege of Lisbon. It was a love/hate endeavor with my appreciation of the author’s keen observations on life and excellent prose (in translation) often masked by the shear energy it took to concentrate on the dense text. I was so relieved when I finished the last page that I immediately grabbed a copy of the latest Kinky Friedman opus and tried to drown my brain in inanity. Since then I have read many novels by Saramago and have gained a huge appreciation for his writing and his thinking. This is one author who won the Nobel Prize for Literature that I can openly approve … in fact, he deserves two awards.

I was down at the Book Exchange this morning and picked up a copy of  a recent work, Death with Interruptions, that was published only five years before the author’s own death. I see that there are a couple of even newer novels I have missed, one published postumously. Adding Saramago back into my reading list is good for me but I also want to emphasize that everyone should read this author. I have suggested in the past that new readers of Saramago might want to consider the paired novels, Blindness and Seeing; I believe they even adapted Blindness to the cinema.

Here is a list of José Saramago’s fiction. I was very partial to All The Names and since I have three or four Saramago novels on my shelf, I think I’m getting ready for an author binge.

  • Terra do Pecado (Land of Sin)
  • Os Poemas Possíveis (Possible Poems)
  • Provavelmente Alegria (Probably Joy )
  • Deste Mundo e do Outro  (This World and the Other)
  • A Bagagem do Viajante  (The Traveller’s Baggage)
  • As Opiniões que o DL teve  (Opinions that DL had)
  • O Ano de 1993  (The Year of 1993)
  • Os Apontamentos  (The Notes)
  • Manual de Pintura e Caligrafia  (Manual of Painting and Calligraphy)
  • Objecto Quase  (Quasi Object )
  • Levantado do Chão  (Raised from the Ground)
  • Viagem a Portugal  (Journey to Portugal )
  • Memorial do Convento  (Baltasar and Blimunda)
  • O Ano da Morte de Ricardo Reis  (The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis)
  • A Jangada de Pedra  (The Stone Raft)
  • História do Cerco de Lisboa  (The History of the Siege of Lisbon)
  • O Evangelho Segundo Jesus Cristo  (The Gospel According to Jesus Christ)
  • Ensaio sobre a Cegueira  (Blindness)
  • Todos os Nomes  (All the Names)
  • O Conto da Ilha Desconhecida  (The Tale of the Unknown Island)
  • A Caverna  (The Cave)
  • A Maior Flor do Mundo  (Children’s Picture Book)
  • O Homem Duplicado  (The Double)
  • Ensaio sobre a Lucidez  (Seeing)
  • Don Giovanni ou o Dissoluto Absolvido  (Don Giovanni, or, Dissolute Acquitted)
  • As Intermitências da Morte  (Death with Interruptions)
  • As Pequenas Memórias  (Small Memories)
  • A Viagem do Elefante  (The Elephant’s Journey)
  • Caim  (Cain)

I have given the titles in both Portuguese and the English Translation for those who read Portuguese. Note that not all the early works are available in English at this time.

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