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  • Published: 11 November 2021
  • ISBN: 9780241519318
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 96
  • RRP: $24.00


A Hallucination

A private meeting, chance encounters and a mysterious tour of Lisbon, in this brilliant homage to Tabucchi's country, culture and people

In the city of Lisbon, Requiem's narrator has an appointment to meet someone on a quay by the Tagus at twelve. Misunderstanding twelve to mean noon as opposed to midnight, he is left to wait. As the day unfolds he has many unexpected encounters - with a young drug addict, a disorientated taxi driver, a cemetery keeper, the mysterious Isabel and the ghost of the late great poet Fernando Pessoa - each meeting travelling between the real and illusionary. Part travelogue, part autobiography, part fiction, Requiem becomes an homage to a country and its people, and a farewell to the past as the narrator lays claim to a literary forebear who, like himself, is an evasive and many-sided personality.

  • Published: 11 November 2021
  • ISBN: 9780241519318
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 96
  • RRP: $24.00

About the author

Antonio Tabucchi

Antonio Tabucchi was born in Pisa in 1943, where he still lives. His previous fiction includes Little Misunderstandings of No Importance and Indian Nocturne - now a film - which won the Prix Medici Etranger in 1987. Both of these titles are published by Vintage.

Tim Parks, the translator, lives in Italy and has won critical acclaim for his own writing.

Also by Antonio Tabucchi

See all

Praise for Requiem

Reading this is like having a buzzed after-dinner conversation with a mind too brilliant to get into nuts and bolts. And yet the streamlike writing, spliced by endless commas, contains a charm that shines through the monochrome

Kirkus Reviews

Beautifully translated ... perhaps his most accessible work to date

The Nation

In the narrator's conversations and in his memories of the past, there is created a personal requiem for the old Lisbon, Tabucchi's Lisbon, not the traditional, solemn celebration of the mass for the dead, with its organ music and cathedrals, but the street music of mouth-organs and barrel-organs

Jack Byrne, Review of Contemporary Fiction

Elegant, cosmopolitan, inventive and disquieting; his writing is, paradoxically, sensuous and economical

Boston Review

This imagined world is created with elegance and complexity

Robert Gray, Publishers Marketplace

Tabucchi's books are economical surreal-comic novellas. There's a cosmopolitan eeriness here

Amit Chaudhuri, Times Literary Supplement

Winner of the 1991 Italian PEN Prize, this playful bagatelle translated from the original Portuguese, is partly homage to Portuguese culture, partly a mellow autobiographical fantasy

Publishers Weekly

A wonderful, enchanting tribute to the Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa ... aptly subtitled, this book brilliantly creates a story that, like a delicious cocktail, most readers will finish in one gulp and will return to savor

Library Journal

Tabucchi is a master of illusion and allusion, and this is a literary puzzle that teases, amuses and provokes

Sunday Telegraph

A funny, sad novella about how we got here from there, and how, in our youth, "our eyes saw things differently" . . . a light summer read with enough weight to stop it blowing away

John Self, The Times

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