The Lives of Thingsby José Saramago
The Lives of Things collects José Saramago’s early experiments with the short story form, attesting to the young novelist’s imaginative power and incomparable skill in elaborating the most extravagant fantasies. Combining bitter satire, outrageous parody and Kafkaesque hallucinations, these stories explore the horror and repression that/em>
The Lives of Things collects José Saramago’s early experiments with the short story form, attesting to the young novelist’s imaginative power and incomparable skill in elaborating the most extravagant fantasies. Combining bitter satire, outrageous parody and Kafkaesque hallucinations, these stories explore the horror and repression that paralyzed Portugal under the Salazar regime and pay tribute to human resilience in the face of injustice and institutionalized tyranny.
Beautifully written and deeply unsettling, The Lives of Things illuminates the development of Saramago’s prose and records the genesis of themes that resound throughout his novels.
“Saramago is a writer, like Faulkner, so confident of his resources and ultimate destination that he can bring any improbability to life.”—John Updike, New Yorker
“No one writes quite like Saramago, so solicitous and yet so magnificently free. He works as though cradling a thing of magic.”—Steven Poole, Guardian
“These early stories are a reminder of why he deserved the Nobel prize.”—Scotland on Sunday
“Bittersweet beauty but also a wickedly mischievous sense of humour ... parables in human compassion, celebrating the triumph of the human spirit.”—Irish Times
“A poetic encapsulation of Saramago’s extraordinary talent.”—Bookforum
“An intriguing coda to a fascinating career.”—Metro
“One of the giants of European literature ... For new readers, this collection is an essential introduction to Saramago’s concerns with social decay, alienation and political repression and the alternatives to them. For devotees, it is one to savour.”—Morning Star
“Here, the literary lion experiments with shorter, more inventive forms, and the results are lucid and impressive...Saramago’s considerable talent is clearly manifest.”—Publishers Weekly
“The Lives of Things is a wonderful artifact ... it is, like all his books, intoxicating reading...Moribund, absurd, flickering quickly between mirth and horror, these stories are filled with the master scribe’s sibylline ruminations on mortality and language, and a gentle, blossoming beauty.”—Fast Forward Weekly
“Saramago’s prose is richly colorful, descriptive and frequently verges on shocking without being excessive. It is easy to fall into the trap of reading the same paragraph over and over again, luxuriating in the gorgeous, strange yet precise word choice but without being stuck.”—Aleksandra Fazlipour, Three Percent
- Verso Books
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- Product dimensions:
- 5.80(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.80(d)
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Meet the Author
The Portuguese Nobel Laureate José Saramago was a novelist, playwright and journalist. His numerous books, including the bestselling All the Names, Blindness, and The Cave, have been translated into more than forty languages and have established him as one of the world’s most influential writers. He died in June 2010.
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