Germano Almeida: O testamento do Sr Napumoceno da Silva Araújo



King will that was over 300 pages long and beueathed everything to the bastard aughter no one knew he hadThe story particularly in the beginning escribing the funeral is extremely funny in its way It is also notable for showing how various people s perceptions of the same events can be so ifferent as to be come almost unrecognizable Araujo s nephew for instance through his eyes is a slimy arrogant eceitful Uriah Heep type character but his newfound cousin Maria e Graca sees him as a likable enough man who bears no grudge against her and they become friendly with each otherNormally I can t stand overlong paragraphs and run on sentences in books and this book had plenty of both but for some reason I A Day Away didn t mind this time Iidn t think I would enjoy reading this nearly as much as I Memoir of a Misfit did and I wish I could seek out the author s other novels but none of them have been translated into English In this novella a rich businessman Napumocenoa Silva Araujo has just Looking for the Toffees died leaving a surprising will everyone assumed the straitlaced old bachelor led an abstemious life but it turns out he had his share of sexcapades The book is set in Cape Verde an island nation off the west coast of Africa but fittingly perhaps as the islands were first settled by the Portuguese reads like a Latin American novel than an African one with its Portuguese names single paragraphs that span multiple pages and obsessive focus on OMG SEXThe story is told mostly through Napumoceno s eyes relating the events of his life as he wrote about them We also see Maria his secret illegitimateaughter as she learns about the man she never knew was her father and befriends the nephew who Raising Gods Girl d assumed himself to be the heir There is not any strong plotline to provide an organizing principle for The Last Will and Testament of Senhora Silva Ara jo translated from the Portuguese by Sheila Faria Glaser is my book from Cape Verde for the Read The World challenge For those who The Gulag Handbook don t know Cape Verde is an island nation an archipelago off the coast of Africa at about the point where the continent projects furthest into the Atlantic It was uninhabited until the Portuguese started using it as a trading port I learn from Wikipedia and the population is largely of mixed European and African originThat history may explain why it feels like a book from Latin America than from Africa I would be hard pressed to explain exactly what I mean by that a sense that the European cultural influence iseeply embedded is part of it although I can t immediate articulate what makes me say that It may be no than the fact that the book is full of names like Senhor The Beckoning Lady (Albert Campion da Silva Ara jo of courseThe book tells the story of a self made local businessman it starts with the reading of his will which reveals unexpected news and moves back and forward through his life building up into complex portrait It s short 151 pages but nicely written wryly humorous and open to the absurdities as well as the tragedies of the human condition Bookray wwwbookcrossingcomjournal7416296 Received 16th February 2011I found this a sad story of a man who basically wasted all the chances in his life to find himself happiness by not acting on his feelings or acting too late He could have married Dona Chica and had a happy family life but was too worried about his reputation Heid chase the lady from Dakar but she left him with uite another legacy which he also Will in the World delayedealing with He missed his moment with Dona Joia postponing his letter too long and being in any case too tentative and the mysterious Ad lia was not free when he wanted her and by the time she was he was no longer interested His greatest success was his business and even that he June Fourth Elegies delegates to his nephew Carlos and yetoes not trust him to run it without him He remains Baby and Child Vegetarian Recipes distant from everyone and even runs his business at aistance with the minimum of bother by selling The Confabulist direct from the ship and theock and re exporting many of his importsNot surprisingly I found myself unable to engage with Senhor Napumoceno Der Illusionist da Silva Ara jo and so in the end I found the book unresolved and uninspired I was hoping to get of a picture of life in Cape Verde which turns out to me a nation made up of several islands several hundred miles off the coast of West Africa Looking up Germano Almeida on Wikipedia I read that this book is supposed to show Sr Napumoceno as a relic of colonialism but I can t see that either A pleasant enough book but unmemorable I think what I appreciated most about this book was the style and the language The person would shift from third narrator to first whoever the narrator was talking about mid paragraph and there was something about that style that led to a really interesting fluidity to the prose The story itself is not that compelling There is also a rape scene mid novel that made me unsure I really wanted to continue with the story simply because of how casually it was handled by the author as casually asescribing any other action in the novel I read this book with little knowledge of Cape Verde and would have perhaps gotten out of it with a Enticing (PI Men to the Rescue deeper cultural context to the story but I m not convinced. Ate an illegitimate child such is the lot of poor self critical Señora Silva A bit like Calvino's Mr Palomar in his attention to protocol and in his terror of life's passions; a bit like Svevo's Zeno a little pompous a little old fashioned and often hapless Señor Spring Comes to Sanctuary (Welcome to Sanctuary, da Silva moves along aeliciously blurry line between farce and tragedy a self important buffoon becomes a fully human even tragic figure in the arc of this hilarious and touching novel translated into Spanish German French Italian Dutch Norwegian Swedish and now at last English.

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With hesitation I picked up this book It s on my list of books to read around the world and this story is set in Cape Verde I m always a bit hesitant when reading works that were translated from Portuguese The stories are fantastical and somewhat romantic but always lacking They seem incomplete maybe something got lost in translation In this book by Germano Almeida we learn that the protagonist Senhor Napumoceno has Riding Class (Saddle Club, died His only nephew and business partner Carlos eagerly awaits to inherit everything owned by his uncle But the will of Senhor Napumoceno turns out to be a memoirivulging all his secrets including that of an illegitimate Silver Stirrups (Saddle Club, daughter GarcaThe sentences in this book were unbelievably long and one can easily get lost in them Luckily I managed to get into the flow of the story and just let the tide carry me all the way to the end It s not a long book anyway Like most lusophone literature from Africa this one reminded me a lot of Latin American magical realism and its unstructured and unreasonable way of narration I m glad I read this but at the same time unsure what the message of this book isenn was bringt es Different Class dem Menschen allen Reichtumer Welt zu erlangen wenn er seine Seele verliert Kein Vermoegen ist so gross Short Stories by Roald Dahl dass es unseren Frieden ersetzen koennte This book was interesting to me in that it took place in a location with which I was unfamiliar the Republic of Cape Verde and it was a style of writing that I had not really read before The first thing I had too was to find out something about Cape Verde The Republic of Cape Verde is a group of 10 small islands in the central Atlantic Ocean about 350 miles off the coast of Western Africa The islands are volcanic in origin A few of them are fairly flat and others are rocky with some vegetation but in general they tend to be Goldilocks the Three Bears dry and not very verdant The native language is Portuguese and this book was originally written in that language and translated into uite a few other languages prior to being available in EnglishThe islands were uninhabited wheniscovered by the Portuguese in the 1400 s and became central to the African slave trade The islands were also popular with pirates and were visited by Charles Darwin in 1832 I wonder if he found any interesting species there as the islands are so isolated from any other mainland The islands have few natural resources but overall the literacy rate is high the economy and politics are stable Tourism is a main industry About 500000 people mostly of creole ethnicity live among these islands todayThis story was not the most scintillating but I enjoyed it while still wishing just a bit that I could finish it and get on to something else But I learned so many things along the way like where the Cape Verde islands are and even what the word creole really meansA creole language is a stable full fledged language that originated from a pidgin So a Portuguese based creole is based on Portuguese language originally but has morphed over time to become a stable language of its own Creole is also a word that escribes the people living in a place like Cape Verde they are of Portuguese escent but were born and raised in the colony I Socialist Realism did not realize that creole had such a broad meaning I had never heard the term applied to anyone but the Louisiana creole but there are creole people and creole languages all over the world The languages of Haiti Mauritius the Seychelles Barbados Liberia and Papua New Guinea are all considered to be creoleThe story is humorous but also a little sad Sr Napumocenoid not have as fulfilling a life as he could have and never was able to find a wife I think he was not craving children but he I Look Up To... Michelle Obama did think a greateal about getting married I found him to be an odd Doctor Extraño duck a person who spent much time thinking but little time sharing his thoughts with others oreveloping close relationships Much of this comes out in his lengthy last will and testament I found this book when planning a holiday in Cape Verde and read it whilst away Knowing some basic facts about the country efinitely helped contextualise the novel and being there made it come to life This novel is touching humorous and thought provoking It explores how we see ourselves versus how others see us by the end of it I idn t feel I Never Tell d grasped a truth about the protagonist Sr Napumocenoa Silva Ara jo and I suppose that s the point It also left me with a vivid impression of Cape Verdean life The Last Will Testament of Senhor a Silva Ara jo reminded me of Gabriel Garc a M ruez in its sweeping portrait of a life and some slightly magical elements eg the 10000 umbrellas although I wouldn t call it magical realismI like to read other books by Germano Almeida but unfortunately I Deterring Democracy don t think any others have been translated into English Senhor Napumocenoa Silva Ara jo s funeral was conducted with great solemnity as befitted a man of his bearing and Comet in Moominland (The Moomins, demeanour for he was after all a leading business figure in Mindelo the archipelago of Cabo Verde The Chief mourner his nephew Carlos conducted himself withignity and poise he was Senhor Napumoceno s Sole heir Sadly Senhor Napumoceno had never found ti. New Directions is proud to introduce the masterwork of Cape Verde's greatest living writer Germano Almeida an ironic and original tragic comedy from a new voice in African literature Everyone in Cape Verde knows Señor Hunters Heart da Silva Successful entrepreneur owner of the island's first automobile a most serious upright and self made businessman Señora Silva is the local success story Born an orphan he never married he never splurged; one good suit was good enough for him; and he never wandered from the straight and narrow Or so everyone thought

Me in his extremely busy and convoluted world of business and women for a mundane act such as marriage he always pushed it out of his mind He was Menneskefluene (K2 dapper and of course very very rich women he knew would come flocking and theyidCarlos took his role of the Sole heir very seriously and on the Nazi Gold day of the funeral nobody could have faulted his grief One of the stipulations in a letter to him was that instead of a brass band playing as was customary at every funeral in Cabo Verde Beethoven s Marcha Funebre should be played Now that was a terriblyifficult undertaking for Carlos nobody even knew what Beethoven s Marcha Funebre was but Carlos with his customary tenacity Mr Majeika and the School Inspector did manage to get a recording of the Marcha Funebre Carlos wasetermined that his uncle Napumoceno Selected Poems da Silva Ara jo should lack for nothing on his last earthly voyageBut the show must go on the intricacies of business wait for no man so on the very nextay a very suave Carlos went to his Uncle s Office Carlos responded to the polite Bom Dia Senhor Carlos at his Uncle s Office with gravity but hey id you notice the spring in his step The air of nonchalance The little jaunt to the hipsCarlos enters the sanctum sanctorum Napumoceno a Silva Ara jo s Office and then caution to the winds Doctor Strange, Vol. 2 decorum forgotten Carlos is full of glee the old man isead Dead and I am his Sole heir How would his own portrait look instead of that of the old fossil But wait a minute Carlos there is this tedious business the reading of the Testament The formal reading began in the evening and there seemed no end to it it was as though Napumoceno a Silva Ara jo id not want his heirs to inherit a sou without they being aware of the trajectory his entire life had taken So he began with his extremely humble beginnings he meandered through his rise in business with The Train Robbers digressions into his many liaisons with women Poor Carlos had suggested that he read the Testament in the peace and uiet of his house Unethical said the Notary you have to read it in the presence of the witnesses and everyone has to sign So they read and read The Notary confessed to his throat beingry The witnesses took over reading it went onevery little No Reason To Die detail of his long life But just a minute just when it seemed to be only areary narration of events Napumoceno springs a surprise that kills any hopes that Carlos ever had of being his Sole heir Napumoceno has an illegitimate Naked Risk (Shatterproof daughter Mariae Gra a aughter of his housekeeper Dona Chica and it is she and not Carlos who would inherit his wealth What went wrong how id the relationship with Carlos sour Was it because Napumoceno saw in Carlos eyes the same hunger that he Napumoceno used to have Yes Napumoceno never trusted Carlos for they were so alike Did Napumoceno have liaisons with other women Oh yes many But the love of his life was Adelia the beautiful Adelia who strangely Ellie (Ellie, disappears In addition to his vast heritage Napumoceno beueaths hisaughter Maria Dear Office-Politics de Gra a a collection of his audio tapes where heescribes his life in minute Thomas Harriott detail never omitting a single event Mariae Gra a tries to piece her father s life with these tapes but like any person s life the narrative has lacunae that she is unable to fill On the other hand her uest and her A Mistletoe Kiss desire to learn about her father brings her closer to Carlos her cousin and Dona Eduarda the new housekeeperGermano Almeida the author of this wonderful book wants to show his audience that parallel worldso exist in our society and in our lives This he Intimate Strangers does admirably with wit and sarcasmTheesperate battle of a boy with no shoes who comes to S o Vicente to get rich but forgets that his nephew Carlos has the same Mr Majeika and the Lost Spell Book desire Forgets how Carlos works so very hard to make the business a huge success and very ungratefullyisinherits himLike so very many rich people Napumoceno loves to give but the recipient should be eternally grateful never should the recipient forget When he The Hidden Jewels died Senhor Napumoceno was a much respected businessman a man of integrity a serious man with no vices When the Testament is read he is revealed a muchifferent person He is revealed a human being with all his myriad faults but also his many strengths Aren t we all the same In his final years Chaplin did Senhora Silva Ara jo write his will or his memoir Either way it takes several hours to read and comes as a big shock to his nephew and presumed heir not to mention something of a scandal in wider Cape Verde societyIt is an examination of a life lived Fair Game decisions made for good or ill the conseuences of thoseecisions and a soul laid bare It starts with the story of Senhor The Creatures da Silva Ara jo s life as he looks back on it told thematically rather than chronologically but continues with his nephew s and his illegitimateaughter s view of his life which makes them look at their own As befits a study of the human condition it is by turns sad and funny successful and regretful absurd and glorious Though this book is uite short only about 150 pages it left me with a lot to think about It tells the life story of one Napumoceno So Sweet (Sugar Baby, da Silva Araujo a respected and rich Cape Verdean businessman whoied at a very old age and left a shoc. Ut when Señor a Silva's 387 page Last Will and Testament is read aloud; a marathon task on a hot afternoon which exhausts reader after reader; there's eye opening news and not just for the smug nephew so certain of inheriting all Señor a Silva's property With his will Señor Good Luck, Louisa! (Red Fox Ballet Book, da Silva leaves a memoir that is a touching web of elaborate selfeceptions He Mr. Bridge desired so ardently to prosper to be taken seriously to join perhaps if they'll have him the exclusive Grémio country club and most of all to be a good man And yet shadyeals twists of

Germano de Almeida nasceu na ilha da Boavista Cabo Verde em 1945 Licenciou se em Direito em Lisboa e exerce actualmente advocacia na cidade do Mindelo Estreou se como contista no início da década de 80 colaborando na revista Ponto & Vírgula A sua obra de ficção representa uma nova etapa na rica história literária de Cabo Verde Está publicada em Portugal pela Caminho e começa a despertar int