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  • Published: 30 April 2018
  • ISBN: 9781784871819
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 400
  • RRP: $22.99

Raised from the Ground

Published for the first time in English, this deeply autobiographical novel by Nobel Prize-winning writer José Saramago tells the powerful story of the Mau-Tempo family.

This deeply personal work, follows the changing fortunes of the Mau-Tempo family - poor, landless peasants not unlike the author's own grandparents. Saramago charts the lives of the family in Alentjo, southern Portugal, as national and international events rumble on in the background - the coming of the republic in Portugal, the First and Second World Wars, and an attempt on the dictator Salazar's life. Yet, nothing seriously impinges on the farm labourers' lives until the first stirrings of communism.

  • Published: 30 April 2018
  • ISBN: 9781784871819
  • Imprint: Vintage Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 400
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

Jose Saramago

José Saramago is one of the most important international writers of the last hundred years. Born in Portugal in 1922, he was in his sixties when he came to prominence as a writer with the publication of Baltasar and Blimunda. A huge body of work followed, translated into more than forty languages, and in 1998 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. Saramago died in June 2010.

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Praise for Raised from the Ground

The narrative voice is unmistakable: a mature, quiet voice, conversational and easy, often ironic or endearingly humorous, that flows forward weaving and interbraiding with itself, wandering but never losing impetus

Ursula Le Guin, Guardian

While examining serious political issues - and in particular the power of a small group against exploitation and injustice - the tale is also rich with humour, compassion and love. It is, amongst other things, perhaps Saramago's way of showing his admiration for the people with whom he grew up

Good Book Guide

Time now gives us English-speakers the chance to see how well he worked to serve and deserve such greatness in this early novel

Ursula K Le Guin, Guardian

Here Saramago has begun to develop a unique voice which swoops and dives on his own work like a bird (and which is captured with all the skill of a ventriloquist in Margaret Jull Costa's excellent translation)

Nick Caistor, Times Literary Supplement

By Saramago's own reckoning it was the book in which he found and developed his style. a novel that resounds with relevance for our own time

Steven Heighton, Scotsman

This is a rich novel about a family of landless agricultural workers struggling over four generations. Readers of José Saramago will not be surprised at this original combination of serious denunciation of injustice with sarcasm and humour. Such an allusive novel, with its own orthodoxy in punctuation and subtle shifts of tone, is especially hard to translate. It reads beautifully well

Michael Eaude, Independent

A torrent of storytelling delivered with a lively, humorous immediacy, where his narrative drive and digressive thoughts flow unimpeded by conventional punctuation restraints

Siobhan Murphy, Metro

It bears the hallmarks of Saramego's righteous political passions, the acute sense of irony, and genuine love for his land and people, especially the poor. Superb writing and perfect Christmas reading

Amanda Hopkinson, Tablet

Raised from the Ground covers the entire 20th-century political history of Portugal in one rich, literary family saga. This lost piece of Saramago's output is perfectly Portuguese - and well worth a look


Saramago presents a deeply detailed analytical portrait of the Portuguese rural landscape as if to impress it on the readers' (and his own) mind forever

The Bay

it is hard to think of a more imaginative novelist, one whose books are so full of humour and humanity and invention

Margaret Jull Costa, Granta

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