Book Reviews

On Fernando Pessoa’s The Book of Disquiet: Complete Edition

On August 29th, New Directions will publish the first complete, chronological English translation of Fernando Pessoa’s The Book of Disquiet. In celebration of this event, we are featuring an excerpt from Margaret Jull Costa’s translations of Pessoa, as well as an interview with the translator and a review of the book, both completed by Seattle writer Rick VanderKnyff. As VanderKnyff writes in his review, “These probing, contemplative passages cycle through a set of recurring themes (meaning, art, the nature of self and identity) and dualities (dreams vs. reality, action vs. contemplation, faith vs. non-faith). Collectively, they are an unflinching portrait of one man’s quiet anguish—and sometimes reverie—over life and his place in the world.”

Cover illustration courtesy of New Directions