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The Lizard

Regular price $ 17.95

By José Saramago, Illustrated by Jose Borges, Translated by Nick Caistor and Lucia Caistor

Triangle Square

12/3/2019, hardcover

SKU: 9781609809331


A story by Nobel Prize-winning writer Jose Saramago, gorgeously illustrated in woodcuts by one of Brazil's most famous artists.

When a lizard appears in the neighborhood of Chiado, in Lisbon, it surprises passers-by, and mobilizes firefighters and the army. With a clear and precise style, the fable offers a multitude of senses, reaching audiences of all ages. The Lizard is a short story included in A Bagagem do Viajante (1973), a volume that brought together the Saramago chronicles for the newspaper A Capital and the weekly Jornal do Fundão between 1971 and 1972. Translated by Nick Caistor and Lucia Caistor , The Lizard, is an illustrated version of the chronicle by J. Borges.


Borges contributes bold, rustic woodcuts that leave plenty of room for symbolic interpretations. ... A pensive, allegorical fairy tale for readers ready to sit with perplexity. -- Kirkus Reviews

Ably translated by the Caistors, this surreal fable by Nobel Prize-winner Saramago imagines a monstrously outsize military response to the appearance of a lizard. ... the fable serves as a reminder that in toxic political situations, nothing--not even a fairy lizard--is safe. Ages 6-9. --Publishers Weekly

About the Contributors:

José de Sousa Saramago, (November 1922 - June 2010), was a Portuguese writer and recipient of the 1998 Nobel Prize in Literature. His works, some of which can be seen as allegories, commonly present subversive perspectives on historic events, emphasizing the theopoetic human factor. More than two million copies of Saramago's books have been sold in Portugal alone and his work has been translated into 25 languages. He was a founding member of the National Front for the Defense of Culture in Lisbon in 1992, and co-founder with Orhan Pamuk, of the European Writers' Parliament (EWP).

José Francisco Borges (Bezerros, Brazil, 1935) is one of the greatest popular artists of Brazil, and a key figure in the tradition of string (loose sheets with texts and images that tell stories). In 1964 he published his first work in the genre: O encontro de dois vaqueiros no Sertão de Petronila, which would be followed by more than two hundred cords to present. His work has been the subject of exhibitions in the United States, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Mexico and Venezuela. He currently resides in his hometown, where he teaches the art of wood engraving (xilogravura) to his family.

Nick Caistor is an award-winning translator of more than fifty works from Spanish and Portuguese. He has also published short biographies of Octavio Paz, Fidel Castro and Ernesto 'Che' Guevara, as well as cultural histories of Buenos Aires and Mexico City. His daughter, Lucia Caistor, is a social researcher focusing on cities and how people experience them. She lives between London and Lisbon, and has translated several works from Argentina, Brazil, and Portugal.