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  • Published: 20 September 2013
  • ISBN: 9781448114924
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 288

The Stone Raft



A majestic tale, rich in allegory, wit and philosophy; another masterpiece from the Nobel prize-winning novelist Jose Saramago.

One day a rift opens along the border between Spain and France and the Iberian Peninsula floats off resolutely westwards across the Atlantic, a great stone raft. As it drifts at a leisurely 18 km a day towards the Americas, the inhabitants of the coastal cities begin to flee in panic at the thought of the impending impact. Meanwhile four ill-assorted characters make a pilgrimage to the spot where one of them first sensed the land was changing. There they meet a dog with a blue thread hanging from its mouth which guides them further on their quixotic quest. In Saramago's memorable fable, fantasy and reality merge and surprising twists and turns of the plot become commonplace. This tale of fixed points and shifting goals, of uprootedness and displacement, takes as its starting point a deceptively simple conceit and becomes a superb vehicle for Saramago's trenchant wit.

  • Published: 20 September 2013
  • ISBN: 9781448114924
  • Imprint: Vintage Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 288

About the author

José 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.

Also by José Saramago

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Praise for The Stone Raft

An irresistible blend of shrewd detail and lyrical fantasy... A seductive novel that needs to be savoured

Helen Dunmore, Observer

An invitation to one of the richest bodies of work by a living writer

Amanda Hopkinson, New Statesman

Jose Saramago's brilliant evocation...is magical realism of a sort that stirs real wonder

James Park, Time Out

Saramago's lovely and original questing story, in a lineage of others such as Don Quixote and Kipling's Kim, is a journey of the spirit told as a journey of the feet

Richard Eder, Los Angeles Times

Tremendous wit is always apparent in his imaginative conceits, comic digression and verbal and narrative games

Ian Critchley, Sunday Times

An engaging fantasy...this book can't be pinned down however, either as magic realism, Swiftian satire, or dystopian science fiction: in fact its concerns are largely philosophical... Pontiero's excellent translation preserves the strange, looping rhythms of Jose Saramago's prose, as well as his likeably self-referential humour and, most important of all, the sense of a deep and luminous intelligence which informs the whole enterprise

Jonathan Coe, Mail on Sunday

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