Gertrude & Victoria's Reviews > The Double

The Double by José Saramago
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Jun 27, 09

bookshelves: spanish-latin-library

The Double is a witty and humorous work on identity and human nature. Saramago's ability to capture our imagination with his unusual themes demonstrates his versatility as one of the greatest writers living today. In addition, his prose is replete with elegant phrasing; he has created his own idiom.

In this novel, the main character Maximo Alfonso, a history teacher and lonely individual comes across a person who looks exactly like him in every way possible. This exactness being an astronomical coincidence, and something that could never physically happen in the real world, initially forces Alfonso to dismiss these events or sightings, but later, they bewilder him into desperation. Alfonso unsure of his feelings at first, eventually succumbs to his curiosity to learn more about his double. As he goes about his investigative work, he grows resentful of this double 'stealing' his identity.

You may be asking yourself, when you finish this book, how Saramago understands our nature as individual human beings so accurately. This is one of his many virtues as a writer. Strongly recommended for those who often run into their 'double' and are disturbed by it.
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