Seeing by Jose Saramago


8 Critic Reviews


On election day in the capital, it is raining so hard that no one has bothered to come out to vote. The politicians are growing jittery. Should they reschedule the elections for another day? Around three o’clock, the rain finally stops. Promptly at four, voters rush to the polling stations, as if they had been ordered to appear.

But when the ballots are counted, more than 70 percent are blank. The citizens are rebellious. A state of emergency is declared. But are the authorities acting too precipitously? Or even blindly? The word evokes terrible memories of the plague of blindness that hit the city four years before, and of the one woman who kept her sight. Could she be behind the blank ballots? A police superintendent is put on the case.

What begins as a satire on governments and the sometimes dubious efficacy of the democratic system turns into something far more sinister. A singular novel from the author of Blindness.


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 April 9, 2007 by Mariner Books. 322 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Political & Social Sciences, Self Help. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Seeing
All: 8 | Positive: 6 | Negative: 2


on Feb 01 2006

Very nearly equal to the magnificent Blindness: another invaluable gift from a matchless writer.

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NY Times

Below average
on Apr 09 2006

In the end "Seeing" is merely a sequel to a popular work — the sort of product that gives movie producers a bad name and does not generally win points for wisdom.

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on Apr 15 2006

He has written a novel that says more about the days we are living in than any book I have read.

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Publishers Weekly

on Jan 16 2006

It works.

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Blog Critics

Above average
on Apr 03 2006

The perplexed reader is left hanging, maybe for what should be the follow-up to Seeing: Believing.

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Book Reporter

on Jan 23 2011

SEEING is less successful than Saramago's masterpiece BLINDNESS, but it is still a wonderfully executed and highly recommendable read.

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Above average
on May 15 2006

The satisfaction of a Saramago novel, like that of life itself, is rarely a resolution to its central drama; it is the people and moments one enjoys along the way.

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Infoshop News

on Nov 21 2005

Saramago’s novel bares a nerve in our western democracies and asks where sovereignty, or political power, really resides in our ‘open societies’.

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Eric Brown 27 Dec 2014

Rated the book as 5 out of 5