A woman in her 30s begins to question the routine and predictability of her days. In everybody's eyes, she has a perfect life: happy marriage, children, and a career. Yet what she feels is an enormous apathy. All that changes when she encounters a successful politician who had, years earlier, been her high school boyfriend. As she rediscovers the passion missing from her life, she will face a life-altering choice.
"a not uncommon vacation in hell"
The latest novel from number-one internationally best-selling author Paulo Coelho is a classic of inspiration and reflection, a meditation on life, love, and the significance of change. A novel of philosophical reflection set in Jerusalem during the time of the Crusades. Here a community of Christians, Arabs, and Jews who have long lived together harmoniously have been warned of an imminent attack and certain destruction. Contemplating their demise, the community assembles to seek the wise counsel of a Greek Copt.
"Manuscript Found in Accra"
On the first day of the new year, no one dies. This of course causes consternation among politicians, religious leaders, morticians, and doctors. Among the general public, on the other hand, there is initially celebration - flags are hung out on balconies, people dance in the streets. They have achieved the great goal of humanity: eternal life. Then reality hits home....
"interesting but slightly boring"
At the Madrid café where she stops for breakfast each day before work, María Dolz finds herself drawn to a couple who is also there every morning. Though she can hardly explain it, observing what she imagines to be their "unblemished" life lifts her out of the doldrums of her own existence. But what begins as mere observation turns into an increasingly complicated entanglement when the man is fatally stabbed in the street. María approaches the widow to offer her condolences, and at the couple’s home she meets - and falls in love with - another man who sheds disturbing new light on the crime.
"Skip this one!"
In 1551, King Joo III of Portugal gave Archduke Maximilian an unusual wedding present: an elephant named Solomon. In Jose Saramago's remarkable and imaginative retelling, Solomon and his keeper, Subhro, begin in dismal conditions, forgotten in a corner of the palace grounds.
Senhor Jose is a low-grade clerk in the city's Central Registry, where the living and the dead share the same shelf space. A middle-aged bachelor, he has no interest in anything beyond the certificates of birth, marriage, divorce, and death that are his daily routine. But one day, when he comes across the records of an anonymous young woman, something happens to him.
"effortless abstract conections"
Lisbon, late 1940s. The inhabitants of a faded apartment building are struggling to make ends meet: Silvestre the cobbler and his wife take in a disaffected young lodger; Dona Ldia, who used to work the streets, is now kept by a businessman with a roving eye. The cultivated family of Dona Cndida, come down in the world, keep to themselves with their books and music.