Book 760 Antonio Lobo Antunes – Fado Alexandrino


In a month’s time there will be a new edition of the 1001 list, however I still will be sticking with the second edition and maybe just write a post on the novels that are new. I do wish that the editors would do something about the novels in translation. I’m still dissatisfied with the majority of them and Fado Alexandrino is no exception.

The novel is about five Portuguese soldiers returning from the civil war which took place in Angola in ┬áthe 70’s. As they sit around a table all five discuss the madness of war and eventually commit an murder which affects the town they live in as well and works as a sort of wake up call.

Fado Alexandrino displays war in all its cartoon insanity, there are passages stuffed with sex, violence and corruption, crossed with complex emotions and anecdotes. The author himself was part of this conflict so I’m sure the novel is autobiographical.

My problem is that I found it dragging. Passage upon passage of detail which I found superfluous, sure the novel is written in the fado style ( twelve chapters of 26 verses, if i’m not mistaken) but I found it a tough slog many times.