Mariano, who has lived in the city from an early age, is summoned back to his village to attend his grandfather's funeral. But when he arrives, he discovers two things: firstly, that he has been nominated by his grandfather to take over the running of the family affairs, secondly that his grandfather has not died completely, but is in that frontier space between life and death. In traditional belief, he has died 'badly', and something must happen in order for him to be laid to rest. Mariano starts to receive letters supposedly written by his grandfather, telling him about the family. It is through this strange relationship that he discovers the secret of his own birth, while also cleansing his grandfather's conscience. The novel contains a blend of picturesque and sometimes comic characters and situations.
Mia Couto was born in Mozambique in 1955. When his country became independent in 1975, Couto interrupted his studies to become a journalist and newspaper editor. Later, he resumed his studies, and is now an environmental biologist. He has published poetry, short stories and a number of novels. His work has been widely recognised in the Portuguesespeaking world, and has been translated into a number of European languages.
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- ID: 9781846686719
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