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The Double by José Saramago (2002)
Magic Realism (41)
Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0156032589, Paperback)
Tertuliano Máximo Afonso is a divorced, depressed history teacher. To lift his spirits, a colleague suggests he rent a certain video. Tertuliano watches the film, unimpressed. But during the night, when he is awakened by noises in his apartment, he goes into the living room to find that the VCR is replaying the video. He watches in astonishment as a man who looks exactly like him-or, more specifically, exactly like he did five years before, mustachioed and fuller in the face-appears on the screen. He sleeps badly.
Against his better judgment, Tertuliano decides to pursue his double. As he roots out the man's identity, what begins as a whimsical story becomes a "wonderfully twisted meditation on identity and individuality" (The Boston Globe). Saramago displays his remarkable talent in this haunting tale of appearance versus reality.
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:14 -0400)
"A history teacher rents a video on the recommendation of a friend. Not a great fan of cinema, he watches the film unmoved, but wakes later that night unaccountably troubled by something he has subconsciously viewed. He gets up to watch the film again and discovers, to his horror, an actor who could be his twin, identical in every way except for the moustache he himself has not worn for five years." "Telling no-one of his discovery and wrought with anxiety, Tertuliano Maximo Afonso embarks on a quest to find the actor. By a process of elimination, and watching countless films, he manages to identify the "double" and secretly plots to make contact. But how will the struggling actor feel when confronted out of the blue by a man claiming to be identical to him in every way? A man proclaiming himself to be the original and the actor a duplicate?" "Saramago's new novel explores the nature of individuality and examines the fear and insecurity that arise when our singularity comes under threat, when even a wife cannot tell the original from the impostor."--BOOK JACKET.
(summary from another edition)
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