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See all 3 questions about Sleepwalking Land….

Jan 11, Robledo Cabral rated it it was ok. How does this exist? Historical FictionMagic Realism. Want to Read saving….

Sleepwalking Land

Preview — Sleepwalking Land by Mia Couto. Maybe it’s just cruel and greedy people killing each other, or desperate people fighting in any way they can to survive. A man tries to dig a river with his own hands to separate himself from the gangs and soldiers, hoping the water will wash them all away.

While reading, I was very aware that terrq entire book served as an allegory for the unspeakable events that likely took place and the damage wrought by the war.

I think I went into it expecting it to be a more or less straightforward historical fiction account of the Mozambican Civil War, but I quickly realized that it was going to be one that relied almost solely on magical realism in the telling.

There was one feature that I found compelling – water. Don’t seek your relatives any more, those who have left for other lands in search of peace. What a powerful and reflective book about the terra of war. It’s traumatic writing, cracked clear through and showing the other side. You can’t really read him for plot, more for the interesting symbolism and quiet prose of his writing.

For the film, see Sleepwalking Land film. Who do you like, then? There is a road but no destination, the road ceased to offer hope and now offers only the promise of criminals passing by, of attacks, of death.


Seu veneno circulava agora em todos os rios da nossa alma. I may not receive it until after Christmas, but would anyone who’s reading it like a reading partner? In alternating chapters we are treated to these parallel journeys, and as the story progresses, as it gets stranger and stranger, these two narratives begin to intertwine.

Gerra and Tuahir take the notebooks with them into the scorched remnants of the bus that they use as a shelter. Beautiful and very original recreation of the Portuguese language. The plot is simple. Coutoo death does not bring relief; a ghost, a perhaps the boy’s father’s, tells his son: His ambitions are multiple, and I am sure that, in his later novels, he probably learned how to strike a better balance between abstraction and execution.

Sleepwalking Land by Mia Couto

The reader is never confronted with it directly, wh This is my second novel by Mia Couto and I am definitely noticing some themes in his writing – dislocation, disorientation and isolation in or through war being a main one. Two characters wander aimlessly among miia of a land that was once at peace. It’s like someone with a mind half Kafka and half Cormac McCarthy, the dreamstates of Doris Lessing, and the ever-loving heart of the mother of everybody lived in the thick of the Mozambiquan civil war, and wrote a book about it.

The narration alternates the conversations between Tuahir and Muidinga with the entries of the notebooks being read eonambula by the latter.

I can’t say I would recommend this book to everyone. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. Here is a selection of literary gems from a couple of dozens I marked while reading, that show the power of his writing.

This violence always occur ‘off-screen’ in his novels: An unforgettable set of characters sleepwalks the same earth, some sonambulq given up hope, others trying to sonsmbula what seems well beyond mending. This novel takes us back to the ‘s when a war of independence against colonial Portugal disintegrated into civil war, and ultimately, simply into banditry and terfa.


I’m curious if all of Couto’s books resemble this one. Though I find Couto to be more in control of his novel than Orki was with The Famished Road; the story is tighter, the prose more precise. If you’re looking for something a little different, something both strange and profound, give Sleepwalking Land a try. Sleepingwalking Land is the story of an old man and a young boy who, while trying to hide from the war, find a burnt-out bus and decide to live in it.

I struggled to understand the reasons behind various violence and betrayals, and yet I realized that understand the context absolutely did not matter: Portuguese original English translation. Set in a war-torn Mozambique during the end of the civil war when the tension between rival political parties was at its highest point, Tuahir, an older man, and Muidinga, a boy recovering from illness, met at the refugee camp and fled.

A young boy and old man are survivors sheltering in a burned-out bus, from which they removed charred bodies to make it habitable. That’s what the war has done: Next to one of these bodies they find a set of notebooks written by a person named Kindzu. Em publicou o seu primeiro livro de poesia, Raiz de Orvalho, que inclui poemas contra a propaganda marxista militante.