The High Mountains of Portugal

The High Mountains of Portugal

Language: English

Pages: 352

ISBN: 0812987039

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


"NEW YORK TIMES "BESTSELLER Fifteen years after "The Life of Pi, " Yann Martel is taking us on another long journey. Fans of his Man Booker Prize winning novel will recognize familiar themes from that seafaring phenomenon, but the itinerary in this imaginative new book is entirely fresh. . . . Martel s writing has never been more charming. Ron Charles, "The Washington Post
"
In Lisbon in 1904, a young man named Tomas discovers an old journal. It hints at the existence of an extraordinary artifact that if he can find it would redefine history. Traveling in one of Europe s earliest automobiles, he sets out in search of this strange treasure.
Thirty-five years later, a Portuguese pathologist devoted to the murder mysteries of Agatha Christie finds himself at the center of a mystery of his own and drawn into the consequences of Tomas s quest.
Fifty years on, a Canadian senator takes refuge in his ancestral village in northern Portugal, grieving the loss of his beloved wife. But he arrives with an unusual companion: a chimpanzee. And there the century-old quest will come to an unexpected conclusion.
"The High Mountains of Portugal" part quest, part ghost story, part contemporary fable offers a haunting exploration of great love and great loss. Filled with tenderness, humor, and endless surprise, it takes the reader on a road trip through Portugal in the last century and through the human soul.
Praise for "The High Mountains of Portugal"
Just as ambitious, just as clever, just as existential and spiritual [as "Life of Pi"] . . . a book that rewards your attention . . . an excellent book club choice. "San Francisco Chronicle"
There s no denying the simple pleasures to be had in "The High Mountains of Portugal." "Chicago Tribune"
Charming . . . Most Martellian is the boundless capacity for parable. . . . Martel knows his strengths: passages about the chimpanzee and his owner brim irresistibly with affection and attentiveness. "The New Yorker"
A rich and rewarding experience . . . [Martel] spins his magic thread of hope and despair, comedy and pathos. "USA Today
"
I took away indelible images from "High Mountains, "enchanting and disturbing at the same time. . . . As whimsical as Martel s magic realism can be, grief informs every step of the book s three journeys. In the course of the novel we burrow ever further into the heart of an ape, pure and threatening at once, our precursor, ourselves. NPR
Refreshing, surprising and filled with sparkling moments of humor and insight. "The Dallas Morning News"
We re fortunate to have brilliant writers using their fiction to meditate on a paradox we need urgently to consider the unbridgeable gap and the unbreakable bond between human and animal, our impossible self-alienation from our world. . . . [Martel s] semi-surreal, semi-absurdist mode is well suited to exploring the paradox. The moral and spiritual implications of his tale have, in the end, a quality of haunting tenderness. Ursula K. Le Guin, "The Guardian"
[Martel packs] his inventive novel with beguiling ideas. What connects an inept curator to a haunted pathologist to a smitten politician across more than seventy-five years is the author s ability to conjure up something uncanny at the end. "The Boston Globe"
A fine home, and story, in which to find oneself. Minneapolis "Star Tribune"

"From the Hardcover edition.""

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MY SON?” cries the mother of the broken egg. She has clocked one of the headlights with such force that it has cleanly broken off. He is horrified—his uncle’s jewel! “I’M GOING TO SUFFOCATE YOU UP A SHEEP’S ASS!” The machine has conveniently brought its hood level with the aggrieved mother. Up goes the club, down goes the club. With a mighty crash, a valley appears on the hood. Tomás would push harder on the accelerator pedal, but there are still many people close-by. “Please, I implore you,

and escape Ponte de Sor. A few kilometres onward, next to a growth of bushes, he brings the machine to a standstill. He gets out and gazes at the automobile’s amputations. He clears the glass shards from the cabin. His uncle will be livid at what has been done to the pride of his menagerie. Just ahead is the village of Rosmaninhal. Is that not one of the villages he mocked for its obscurity? Rosmaninhal, you can do me no harm, he had boasted. Will the village now make him pay for his

water, is seemingly the entire population of Castelo Branco, clamouring at him like breaking waves. His escape—involving the usual shouted exhortations, the usual blinkered lack of understanding, the usual surprise when the automobile nudges forward, and the usual race ahead of the mob—drains him utterly. He drives until his nodding head hits the steerage wheel. He wakes midafternoon and makes a groggy calculation. For each day established by a memory of it—the first day, the bridges, Ponte de

ago. His heart leaps. It’s a new Agatha Christie! A successor to Death on the Nile. It must have arrived that day from the Círculo Português de Mistério. Bless them. Bless his wife, who graced him with the further gift of letting him read it first. The reports will wait. He settles in his chair. Or rather, as his wife suggested, he settles in a boat. A voice comes to his ears: “You do see, don’t you, that she’s got to be killed?” The question floated out into the still night air, seemed to

logbooks of Portuguese ships that travelled the western coast of Africa in the few years after Father Ulisses’ death. He worked on the assumption that the carving had left São Tomé on a Portuguese ship. If it had departed on a foreign ship, then God only knew where it had ended up. Finally, he came upon the logbook of one Captain Rodolfo Pereira Pacheco, whose galleon had departed São Tomé on December 14, 1637, carrying, among other goods, “a rendition of Our Lord on the Cross, strange &

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