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111. Books Bought & Read, March 2014…

12 Apr
111. Books Bought & Read, March 2014…

Books Bought, March 2014

Historia Do Cerco De Lisboa,’ (‘The History Of The Siege Of Lisbon’), José Saramago

Auto Dos Danados,’ (‘Act Of The Damned’), António Lobo Antunes

Dom João I,’ (King John I)

Dom João II,’ (King John II)

The Spanish Prisoner & The Winslow Boy,’ David Mamet

Grandes Fotógrafos: portugal,’ (‘Great Photographers: portugal’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: arte de vanguardia,’ (‘Great Photographers: the avant garde’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: o cinema,’ (‘Great Photographers: the cinema’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: os anos 60,’ (‘Great Photographers: the 60’s’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: o mundo em guerra,’ (‘Great Photographers: the world at war’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: paisagens,’ (‘Great Photographers: landscapes’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: o século das mulheres,’ (‘Great Photographers: the women’s century’), published by the Expresso newspaper

O Evangelho Segundo Jesus Cristo,’ (‘The Gospel According To Jesus Christ’), José Saramago

El Ultimo Cuaderno,’ (‘The Notebook’), José Saramago

Ensaio Sobre A Cegueira,’ (‘Blindness’), José Saramago

O Caderno,’ (‘The Notebook pt.2’), José Saramago

Todos Os Nomes,’ (‘All The Names’), José Saramago

O Conto Da Isla Desconhecida,’ (‘The Tale Of The Unknown Island’), José Saramago

Singularidades De Uma Rapariga Loura,’ (‘Peculiarities Of A Fair-Haired Girl’), Eça de Queirós

Os Portugueses,’ (‘The Portuguese’), Barry Hatton

Night Train To Lisbon,’ Pascal Mercier

 

Books Read, March 2014

A Year In The Life Of Ricardo Reis,’ José Saramago

The Cave,’ José Saramago

A Jangada De Pedra,’ (‘The Stone Raft’), José Saramago

Dom João I: o de boa memoria,’ (King John I: he of the good memory), illustrations by André Letria

Dom João II: o principe perfeito,’ (King John II: the perfect prince), illustrations by André Letria

O Caderno,’ (‘The Notebook’), José Saramagogo

Os Portugueses: a história moderna de portugal,’ (‘The Portuguese: a modern history’), Barry Hatton

Grandes Fotógrafos: portugal,’ (‘Great Photographers: portugal’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: arte de vanguardia,’ (‘Great Photographers: the avant garde’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: o cinema,’ (‘Great Photographers: the cinema’), published by the Expresso newspaper

Grandes Fotógrafos: os anos 60,’ (‘Great Photographers: the 60’s’), published by the Expresso newspaper

 

‘Sinto muito’ or, in good old fashioned English, I’m sorry for the week-long delay in this week’s blog: if you noticed, I hope that means that you enjoy the blog so much you’ll forgive me.

Things suddenly got a little hectic this past few weeks here in Lisboa: this may have had something to do with two months of rain coming to an end, and the sun finally coming out here. Suddenly I was giving walking tours practically daily, and having finally mastered a tour of the old town, Alfama, I was often doing two a day.

This is my job. I get paid to do this.

This is my job. I get paid to do this.

.

With a recent upswing in both quantity and, indeed, quality of tourist, I often found myself giving unofficial tours up to twelve hours along, taking friendly folk along for Pastéis de Belém pastries, or dragging groups of up to fifteen people to watch my new hometown football team, (and officially the most supported in the world), S.L.Benfica.

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Mixing business and pleasure is always a pleasure…or is it a business?…

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These guys started following my tour at 11am, and didn’t leave me until Benfica were in the semi finals of the Europa cup!

This also accounts for the paltry total of books read: five real books, four books of photography, (I wasn’t even sure whether to count them, but they had substantial introductions in Portuguese), and two kids’ books on ancient Kings of Portugal, (research, you see!). Out of a total of 21 bought, that’s a heck of a deficit to make up.

There is a very obvious theme to this month’s reading: after grabbing every book I could find by my new Portuguese favourite, Fernando Pessoa, I returned to my first favoured Lusitanian: José Saramago. Aided by an apparent donation of slightly used books from the Pessoa Foundation and museum just around the corner from them, I managed to pick up seven of his books at my regular haunt Pois Café, and spent most of last month reading him. Next week will be a Saramago special, never fear.

For now, for those who can’t attend my tours for whatever feeble reason, (i.e. living in another country on the other side of the world), I leave you with some trivia from an excellent book on my newly adopted countrymen. It comes from ‘Os Portugueses,’ which I ironically picked up in the translated Portuguese version in the amazing flea market here in the Portuguese capital, but which is actually a book written by an English journalist, Barry Hatton, and can easily be found in English:

.

-There are over two hundred varieties of grape in Portugal: one of them is called ‘Bastardo’.

-The average Portuguese eats 56kg of fish per year, (that’s over a kilogram a week, for those of you who aren’t fans of maths): this is two-and-a-half times more than the second highest average in the EU.

-The 8.9 to 9.0 Richter earthquake which hit Lisbon in 1755 and turned much of Europe enlightened, if not atheist, caused a tsunami which was felt as far away as the Caribbean.

-Portugal receives about 12million tourists a year. Feel free to come and join them!

 

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2 Comments

Posted by on April 12, 2014 in BOOKS

 

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2 responses to “111. Books Bought & Read, March 2014…

  1. nycavri

    April 14, 2014 at 5:32 pm

    Books read, March 2014

    A Gentleman’s Game – Greg Rucka
    A Dance With Dragons – George R. R. Martin
    A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Bad Beginning – Lemony Snicket

    Greg Rucka remains one of my favorite two or three writers. I enjoy his Atticus Kodiak series more than this Queen and Country series, but that’s like saying I enjoy this amazing wine over that almost equally amazing wine. He makes you care about his characters while (and at the same time) doing the most awful things to them . . .

    Which leads me to GRRM. Having finished The Wheel of Time books since reading Song of Ice and Fire Book 4, I was more irritated than anything throughout this read. I was already mad that he had decided not to end the series with this book (after creating perfect conclusions for a number of character arcs in Book 4), and now add to this the fact that we know all his tricks, there’s just nothing surprising here. At this point, and wishing Martin no ill will, I’m hoping for Brandon Sanderson to finish this epic . . .

    Maybe it’s simply the coincidence of juxtaposition, but reading Lemony Snicket after A Dance With Dragons felt a little bit like reading “baby’s first GRRM.” (Similarly, I think of the movie of Fantastic Mister Fox as “baby’s first Tarantino . . .”) I bought the book for my almost 5-year-old and, after checking out the first chapter, decided that she is not ready for it. However, I was quickly caught up in the clever wordplay and ploughed through the rest of these awful happenings, and bought the next two books in the series!

     

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