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A God Strolling in the Cool of the Evening
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A God Strolling in the Cool of the Evening

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  176 ratings  ·  19 reviews
The Moors have invaded the Iberian peninsula, raiding and pillaging Roman towns, but the people of Tarcisis turn a blind eye to the danger. Made complacent by the prosperity of the Pax Romana, they focus instead on the sadistic Games and on the persecution of members of a new religious sect living within the city walls - the Christians. Striving always to adhere to the pri ...more
Hardcover, 265 pages
Published October 1st 1997 by Louisiana State University Press (first published 1994)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 336)
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Filomena Barradas
A sequência de abertura de Um Deus Passeando na Brisa da Tarde é absolutamente fabulosa. Mário de Carvalho, popular e erudito, consegue dar à frase o ritmo certo, evocativo de frases latinas, lidas em Cícero ou noutros autores clássicos.
Viaja-se até um tempo em que Portugal não existia. Era uma parcela de terreno do Império Romano. E um dia, um Deus aparece passeando na brisa da tarde (uma tarde alentejana, penso eu, cheia de calor e silêncio) e tudo muda.
Bryn Hammond
Quiet study of a magistrate in an out of the way Roman province, later Portugal. He’s devoted to Marcus Aurelius, who turns out to be more a realist than himself… I found it a believable novel, perhaps because it avoids the sensational. Not that it lacks plot or drama.

With this one I felt the need for a translator’s note. Maybe I ought to lie back and trust the translator, but in the early stages I was distracted by uncertainty over an oddity of expression, whether the equivalent is in the Port
...more
Carlos Silva
Nunca fiz uma review a um livro, mas deste tenho a dizer que me marcou pelo modo como me revi na personagem principal.

Embora com defeitos, ele é um herói e um péssimo líder, embora as suas acções sejam (a meu ver) as mais correctas a fazer. O que lhe falta para a liderança é a empatia, a capacidade de hipocrisia ou ignorância que falha a muito boa gente.

Hoje em dia, os bons políticos não chegam ao poder porque não são bons líderes.

É uma pena.

Por outro lado, temos forças que o que desejam apenas
...more
Miguel Conde
Between 4 and 5* I choose 5, although I cannot call it a true universal and classical masterpiece. I did choose 5 because it engaged me so much. Very well written, detailed but far from boring, this book gives you a good overview of what could be the politics and the mindframe of the Roman elite. At the same time you follow and understand (even when disagreeing) the personal thoughts, believes and doubts of the main character. If you are looking for a 'fast and furious' book don't look it here b ...more
Christian
An excellent perspective into life in ancient Roman times. Although the story was fictional, at no point did I feel the story veered from the truths of history and the relevence to even contemporary times. If you enjoy first person accounts or political storylines then this is a great book for you.
Inês
Esclarecem-se os incautos: «Este não é um romance histórico» porque o município de Tarcisis nunca existiu. Fica difícil de acreditar perante tão exímias descrições dos costumes e quotidianos de uma povoação do Império Romano no início do primeiro milénio: o que comem, como se relacionam, quem manda, no que acreditam, como se divertem, como julgam e o que toleram.
Lúcio Valério Quíncio é o duúnviro de Tarcisis. Será seguro classificá-lo como um homem justo, incorruptível, compassivo e dedicado, e
...more
Alex Moran
Story - Really good fictional account of a Roman magistrate having a troublesome time with appeasing the populace, protecting the town from Moors and a cult of Christians. There is never a dull moment in the town of Tarcisis.
Writing - I felt that the protagonists could of been better introduced but Mário gives a good description of the characters and the setting; while the dialogue is strong throughout.
Characters - The magistrate Lucius is a very unusual Roman as in he is very likable from not w
...more
Jane
I first read this book in May this year [2013]. I just finished rereading it [July 2013] and I have increased the stars from 4 to 5.

Languid. Thought-provoking.

This novel takes place in the Roman province of Lusitania [present-day Portugal], in a small town, Tarcisis, which the author informs us never existed. We first see Lucius Valerius Quintius, the main character, in his country villa with his wife, Mara. Taking a walk along the riverbank, he sees a slave boy drawing a fish in the sand. Upo
...more
Mónica Silva
Este é o relato de Lúcio Varélio, exilado da sua cidade, Tarcisis, após ter exercido o cargo de duúnviro (governador) do município. A narrativa, descrita na primeira pessoa, aborda os acontecimentos que potenciaram o seu exílio.

Lúcio é uma personagem complexa, um homem íntegro, culto e justo que não se identifica com alguns atos bárbaros típicos da cultura romana. Contudo, estes aspetos desagradam o seu povo, o que torna o seu governo árduo e extenuante. Pois esta é uma verdade muito atual: um g
...more
Eileen Iciek
I was intrigued by the opening of this book which takes place during the time of the Roman emperor, Marcus Aurelius. The author begins by stating the book is not a work of historical fiction. I kept that statement in mind as I read the novel and, I concluded, he was correct.

The book is more an allegory of the human condition - of good people trying their best to get through life despite invading barbarians, local bullies, the selfish and narcissistic, the weak and foolish. It wasn't a "I can't p
...more
Margaret
Although the topic was interesting -- a minor Roman official in an obscure and fictional town in Hispania struggles with what is the right thing to do etc. -- it ultimately was disappointingly all about his obsession with a much younger woman who happened to be causing trouble as a leader of a Christian cult. The official Lucius never quite "gets it" or what's going on around or inside of him and the struggle he faces with his honor is ultimately lame.
DROPPING OUT
What an usual setting: an insignificant Roman town in Lusitania in the 2nd/3rd century of the common era!

The plot basically is a first person narrative by a disgraced Roman patrician, recalling his days as the ruling duumvir of the town and his downfall.

Extremely moving, extremely evocative in exquisite detail of Roman life, Carvalho provides an unusual glimpse into everyday life during trying, conflicting circumstances.

Armando Rodrigues
Mário de Carvalho escreve que este não é um romance histórico, sobretudo por tratar de personagens fictícias numa cidade fictícia. Em todo o caso, a linguagem, os objectos e a vivência do dia a dia estão corretíssimos de acordo com a época, levando-me precisamente a classificar este romance dentro do gênero histórico. Tudo o mais, é apenas a genialidade a que o autor já me habituou.
Colin Wilkie
Great evocation of imperial Rome on the fringes of the Empire, with the moors at the gates and the Christian sect causing trouble within. Really about the challenges of politics. The author, who is a lawyer and who has been a political prisoner, says its not about then, its about now.
Dale
Sometimes you get a book that has rave national reviews, and as you read it you wonder if you actually have the same book...
I found this book slow, dull and predictable. The characters stirred no empathy with me. Maybe i've read too many from the historical fiction genre.
Holly Bond
Oct 09, 2007 Holly Bond rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: ancient religious history buffs
This is a really great book. It's an interesting study of the life of Roman citizen in an outpost in Spain. It is beautifully written and really illustrates how the empire started to change with the advent of Christianity.
Lara
It was very well written and gives you something to think about, but for me it was a very slow read. I just wasn't that compelled to keep reading.
Natalie Olsen
My book club pick. Liked it but one of those books whose premise sounds more interesting than the book turns out to be.
John
Jul 03, 2007 John rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: not many people
Interesting at times, but as a whole pretty slow and not entertaining.
Luís Blue B.
Luís Blue B. marked it as to-read
Dec 19, 2014
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Angela Basista marked it as to-read
Dec 04, 2014
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Mário de Carvalho nasceu em 1944, em Lisboa. Licenciou-se em Direito pela Universidade de Lisboa em 1969. Desde jovem que se envolveu na luta antifascista, tendo estado preso ainda na década de 1960 e durante o serviço militar. A sua luta política leva-o ao exílio, primeiro para a França, depois para a Suécia, em 1973. Após o 25 de Abril regressa a Portugal. A sua estreia literária dá-se em 1981, ...more
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