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Jose Saramago Books In Order

Publication Order of Blindness Books

Blindness (1997) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Seeing (2006) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Manual of Painting and Calligraphy (1977) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis (1984) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Stone Raft (1986) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Baltasar and Blimunda (1987) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The History of the Siege of Lisbon (1989) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Gospel According to Jesus Christ (1993) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
All the Names (1997) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Tale of the Unknown Island (1999) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Cave (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Double (2004) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Death at Intervals aka Death With Interruptions (2008) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Elephant's Journey (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Cain (2011) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Raised from the Ground (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Skylight (2014) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Journey to Portugal (1981) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Portugal (1999) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Small Memories (2009) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Notebook (2010) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

A highly renowned Portuguese writer during his time, the author Jose Saramago was well known for being an extremely versatile and inventive writer, one whom many aspiring novelists mimic to this day, with his influence still held in high esteem. Being given the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1998, he was a gifted and versatile author who was respected by both his peers and his contemporaries alike, having mastered the form of his craft to the utmost degree during his lifetime. Following his death in 2010 he was so highly regarded that Portugal declared two days of mourning to be set aside for his passing, as he left behind a legacy that is near impossible to replicate.

Early and Personal Life

Born on the 16th of November in 1922, Jose Saramago was born and raised in Azinhaga in Portugal to a family of landless peasants. Growing up in the small village, situated in the Ribatejo Province, he would take in his experiences here which would shape his later writings. Moving in 1924 to Lisbon, his father would get a job as a policeman, whilst he grew up studying and learning.

Attending school, he was a gifted pupil with an obvious talent early on, something which he clearly showed throughout his education. Despite this, he had to go and attend a technical school at the age of twelve after his parents were unable to afford to keep him in a grammar school. He later graduated, gaining an education, with many of his childhood experiences heavily influencing him along the way.

Starting out as a car mechanic immediately after leaving school, he would go on to work in this position for two years. Following this he worked as a translator and then an assistant editor for the ‘Diario de Noticias’ newspaper, as well as a journalist. Leaving this position in 1974, largely due to the democratic revolution, he would support himself as a translator again for some time, before finally turning to writing full-time.

Leaving behind a powerful legacy following his death on the 18th of June in 2010, he will continue to be remembered as on of the strongest voices of his generation. With politicians worldwide declaring their respects for the author, it was easy to see the impact that he’d made during his lifetime. This is a legacy that will continue for many years, with a foundation being set-up in his name, and a once thought to be lost novel being published in 2011, as he words carry on making an impact globally.

Writing Career

It was in 1947 that he would publish his first novel in the form of ‘The Widow’, which would later be titled ‘The Land of Sin’. This would make his name and establish his presence as one of the foremost voices of his country and generation. Setting up the foundation of what was to be his career, he created the style and the tone he would be using over his forthcoming books.

With two series by the author, one being a full collection of his works, and the other a set of two books, he has mostly made his name in stand-alones. ‘Obras Completas’ is a collection of four tomes, that collate all his works over the course of his career, making it a must for any collector of the author. Then there’s the two ‘Blindness’ novels that follow each other thematically, with both books ‘Blindness’ and ‘Seeing’ in the series.

As an author lauded during his lifetime, even to the point of receiving a Nobel Prize for Literature at one point, it is his legacy that is most felt today. The weight of his work over the course of his lifetime still reverberates throughout literature and culture to this day. Regarded by both his peers and contemporaries alike, he will continue to influence writers for many generations to come.

Influenced himself by such luminaries as Franz Kafka and Jorge Luis Borges, he’s probably one of the most important writers of the twentieth century. A journalist and a playwright during his time as well, he was also a member of the Portuguese Communist Party too. Promoting his values and ideas through allegories ingrained into his literature, he was able to convey his message in a meaningful and creative manner.

Living in Lanzarote in the Canary Islands of Spain till the day he died in July in 2010, he would spend most of his life writing and imparting his ideas. Whether they be political or simply concepts and musings on human behavior, he was always able to get to a deeper truth. This is something that will continue to be felt for many years to come, as he will carry on inspiring and motivating readers and writers worldwide.

Blindness

Originally published in 1999, this was the first of two books that made-up the Blindness series by author Jose Saramago. First brought out through the Harvest Books publishing label, this continues many of the ideas Saramago had throughout his life. Working as the ideal entry point into his work and mindset, it’s perfect for both loyal fans and newcomers alike.

Following an epidemic of ‘white blindness’ that’s plagued a city, its inhabitants must now come to terms with this outbreak. With scores of the blinded being placed in hospitals set aside for them, they must deal with the problems left in its wake. Crime and low food shortages are on the rise, and it is a disparate group of elements and survivors that must make sense of this mess. Will they be able to cope? Can humanity prevail? How will they overcome the blindness?

Skylight

First released on the 5th of January in 1953, this was finally published through the Houghton Mifflin Harcourt publishing house in 1989. Working as a stand-alone title, this is a great insight into his early writing career, making it a must for anyone looking to find out more on the author. Seeing a number of republications throughout his later career, it was translated into English by Margaret Jull Costa.

Whilst it was largely considered ‘lost’ for many years having been initially ignored by the publishers circa 1953, this tells the story of families living in early 1950s Lisbon. Struggling to make ends meet, it charts the families and their time living in an apartment building that’s fading. Developing over the course of the novel, the non-publication of this title at the time lead to him not writing a novel for many years, turning to poetry and essays instead. With it being finally published, though, it’s a great window into the past. Not just an examination of the authors early progress, but a look into the lives and loves of those potentially forgotten by history, brought to life once again by Saramago in Skylight.

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