Have you ever started reading a book by a favorite author, and as you are reading, you begin to adore the book so much that you cannot help but wonder how many other of the author’s books are left to read?
In this case, I have just started Jose Saramago’s The History of the Siege of Lisbon, and I am greatly chagrined to realize that, for me, it is the penultimate novel.
Not to be condescending at all, but for those unfamiliar with this word, penultimate means, “last but one in a series of things; second to the last.”
I know that all of my readers know the meaning of penultimate, but perhaps not all of you are familiar with Nobel Prize-winning author, Jose Saramago.
If not, I encourage you to discover his work!
Oh, he is a gem! There is no one like him… trust me!
And this book has me completely enthralled.
He has such a unique, meandering, circuitous, grammatically oblivious, unconventional, charming, witty, brilliant, fearless, matchless, fascinatingly digressive way about him!
I have written of his curious ways, in a previous blog. Actually, many times I have mentioned how much I love the novels of Jose Saramago.
Let me just open The Penultimate Novel and select a passage at random…. just one sentence ought to convince all and sundry of the wonderful run-on world of Saramago, waiting to be… runned-on in!
Ahh, here’s a beauty….
Raimundo Silva thought to himself, in the manner of Fernando Pessoa, If I smoked, I should now light a cigarette, watching the river, thinking how vague and uncertain everything is, but, not smoking, I should simply think that everything is truly uncertain and vague, without a cigarette, even though the cigarette, were I to smoke it, would in itself express the uncertainty and vagueness of things, like smoke itself, were I to smoke.