José Saramago, the only Portuguese Literature Nobel prize and indeed the only Portuguese-speaking Literature Nobel prize winner, died today. I still remember the joy of finding out he had won.
Controversial, praised, hated, communist, all these describe him, but ultimately he will remembered or not because of his work. I personally loved "Memorial do Convento" ("Balthasar and Blimunda" in English) which I read for school when I was 18. I read 2 more of his books which i liked much less and left a fourth unfinished, and have to admit that his personal style defeats me more than engages me - I can only read him in special moments. Still, I am curious about two of his later novels which I might pick at some stage.
The cover's design, recently replaced for something brighter, was one of the things I always admired in the edition of his books (well, the Portuguese ones, anyway). They were elegant and gave nothing away.