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Alentejo Blue | [Monica Ali]

Alentejo Blue

Monica Ali's stunning second book is a collection of stories, set in the Alentejo province of Portugal, linked by characters and by a vivid sense of place and time. Teresa, a beautiful young girl from the village, is supposed to marry a suitable man from the same community, but she wants to see the world. Vasco is a café owner who is losing business to the new Internet café down the road.
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Publisher's Summary

Monica Ali's stunning second book is a collection of stories, set in the Alentejo province of Portugal, linked by characters and a vivid sense of place and time.

Teresa, a beautiful young girl from the village, is supposed to marry a suitable man from the same community, but she wants to see the world.

Vasco is a café owner who is losing business to the new Internet café down the road.

The unseemly, dysfunctional, but strangely riveting Pottses are a family of ex-patriots, trying to cobble a life together, living at odds with one another until they run into trouble from the outside.

We also meet several English tourists, including a young couple engaged to be married and confronting each other's weaknesses and idiosyncrasies for the first time, and an older woman imagining a new life while fantasizing about never returning home.

©2006 Monica Ali; (P)2006 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What the Critics Say

"The simultaneous sense of stasis and great change is Ali's forte, and her characters' perceptions are sharp." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

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  •  
    hh pdx United States 08-25-07
    hh pdx United States 08-25-07 Member Since 2015

    hh01

    HELPFUL VOTES
    51
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    Overall
    "shorter would have been better"

    Simply too long for what is there. The writing is fine (with exquisite flourishes) , but without the needed editing, the net result is less than it could be. The narrator does an admirable job with the many voices, pacing, and necessary inflections, adding a great deal, but even she can't compensate for the lack of good editing.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roberta danville, CA, USA 04-07-07
    Roberta danville, CA, USA 04-07-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Big Disappointment"

    This book is a big disappointment. I absolutely LOVED Brick Lane and hated to see the book end. I bought Alentejo Blue hoping for the same experience. I struggled through half of it and finally gave up. It is just not interesting! Too bad.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
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