256 pages, 8 × 5.31 × 1 in
October 1, 2008
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0151012741
ISBN - 13: 9780151012749
Read from the Book
The following day, no one died. this fact, beingabsolutely contrary to life’s rules, provoked enormous and, inthe circumstances, perfectly justifiable anxiety in people’s minds,for we have only to consider that in the entire forty volumes ofuniversal history there is no mention, not even one exemplarycase, of such a phenomenon ever having occurred, for a wholeday to go by, with its generous allowance of twenty- four hours,diurnal and nocturnal, matutinal and vespertine, without onedeath from an illness, a fatal fall, or a successful suicide, not one,not a single one. Not even from a car accident, so frequent onfestive occasions, when blithe irresponsibility and an excess ofalcohol jockey for position on the roads to decide who will reachdeath first. New year’s eve had failed to leave behind it the usualcalamitous trail of fatalities, as if old atropos with her greatbared teeth had decided to put aside her shears for a day. Therewas, however, no shortage of blood. Bewildered, confused, distraught,struggling to control their feelings of nausea, the firemenextracted from the mangled remains wretched humanbodies that, according to the mathematical logic of the collisions,should have been well and truly dead, but which, despitethe seriousness of the injuries and lesions suffered, remainedalive and were carried off to hospital, accompanied by the shrillsound of the ambulance sirens. None of these people would diealong the way and all would disprove the most pessimistic ofmedical pr
From the Publisher
On the first day of the new year, no one dies. This of course causes consternation among politicians, religious leaders, morticians, and doctors. Among the general public, on the other hand, there is initially celebrationflags are hung out on balconies, people dance in the streets. They have achieved the great goal of humanity: eternal life. Then reality hits homefamilies are left to care for the permanently dying, life-insurance policies become meaningless, and funeral parlors are reduced to arranging burials for pet dogs, cats, hamsters, and parrots.
Death sits in her chilly apartment, where she lives alone with scythe and filing cabinets, and contemplates her experiment: What if no one ever died again? What if she, death with a small d, became human and were to fall in love?
About the Author
JOSÉ SARAMAGO (1922-2010) was the author of many novels, among them Blindness, All the Names, Baltasar and Blimunda, and The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis. In 1998 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.
MARGARET JULL COSTA has established herself as the premier translator of Portuguese literature into English today.
PRAISE FOR JOSÉ SARAMAGO
"Saramago is arguably the greatest writer of our time . . . He has the power to throw a dazzling flash of lightning on his subjects, an eerily and impossibly prolonged moment of clarity that illuminates details beyond the power of sunshine to reveal."Chicago Tribune
"Reading the Portuguese writer José Saramago, one quickly senses the presence of a master."The Christian Science Monitor