Death with Interruptions by Jose Saramago

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Synopsis

Nobel Prize-winner Jose Saramago's brilliant new novel poses the question -- what happens when the grim reaper decides there will be no more death? 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 celebration—flags are hung out on balconies, people dance in the streets. They have achieved the great goal of humanity: eternal life. Then reality hits home—families 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 Jose Saramago

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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.
 
Published September 2, 2009 by Mariner Books. 257 pages
Genres: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction, Health, Fitness & Dieting, History, Self Help. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Death with Interruptions

Kirkus Reviews

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Then, in a spectacular tonal and thematic shift, Death herself becomes the protagonist, and the nature of her intimacy with humans becomes the vehicle for a thrilling threnody composed of grief, love (for that which cannot last) and a resigned, muted acceptance of the inevitable.

Aug 15 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

The New York Times

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“For the first time in her life, death knew what it felt like to have a dog on her lap.” Life has for the first time laid a finger on death.

Nov 11 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

The New York Times

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Saramago’s work has had two peaks, one in the mid 1980s with the subtle and masterly modernist novel “The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis,” a mind-meld of the author and the great poet Fernando Pessoa set in Lisbon in the epochal year 1936, and another in the mid-’90s when his writing was chara...

Oct 24 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

The Guardian

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Death at Intervals by José Saramago Find this on the Guardian bookshop Search the Guardian bookshop An unnamed country's inhabitants suddenly stop dying.

Feb 07 2009 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

BC Books

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In the first half of his book, Saramago is less interested in how specific characters deal with the disappearance of death than, as noted above, with the group dynamics that ensue.

Dec 08 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

BC Books

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Fredric March charmed audiences as Death personified in the 1934 film Death Takes a Holiday, and accounts of mortals who elude the Grim Reaper are pervasive in traditional cultures - for example, some variant of the Orpheus myth has been identified in more than 50 different Native American tribes...

Dec 08 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

Examiner

I just finished reading Death with Interruptions, by Jose Saramago.

Nov 30 2010 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

San Francisco Chronicle

Death is also necessary for religion: "the one justification for the existence of all religions is death," unless God is responsible for the death stoppage, which he/she isn't.

Oct 25 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

Tampa Bay Times

In the second half of the book, death assumes the form of an attractive woman to personally deliver the letter, and Saramago descends from the jingoistic macro to the lyrical micro level, exposing the dysfunction in death itself when it too has to confront uncertainty.

Nov 08 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

Bookmarks Magazine

Susan Salter Reynolds Seattle Times 4 of 5 Stars "In Saramago’s hands, and in translator Margaret Jull Costa’s translation of his challenging Portuguese text into English, the thorny nature of his prose delivers its own distinctive pleasures and rewards.

Oct 19 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

Book Lovers

From the effects on the insurance and mortuary businesses to the precarious border situations with neighbouring countries (when it has been realized that death will still occur if the sick that can’t die in one country are taken across the border to another country to finalize the deed.) He even ...

Apr 26 2010 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

The New Yorker

Online version of the weekly magazine, with current articles, cartoons, blogs, audio, video, slide shows, an archive of articles and abstracts back to 1925

Dec 31 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

Charleston City Paper

This time the premise is that death goes on strike, albeit a temporary one: During the seven-month period in which no one dies, society finds itself grappling with death and, more importantly, with the meaning of life.

Dec 03 2008 | Read Full Review of Death with Interruptions

Reader Rating for Death with Interruptions
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