"Histórias Falsas" = "False Stories"
Gonçalo M. Tavares tells us a bunch of semi-false stories based on “real” stories, i.e., stories belonging to a kind pf parallel universe of Stories, wherein everything looks slightly askew:
The story of Juliet, the saint from Bavaria
The story of Lianor de Mileto
The story of Listo Mercatore
The story of Metão, the little one
The tyrants’ story
The story of Aurius Anaxos
The story of Elia de Mirceia
The story of Faustina, the fearful
The story of Arquitas
I cannot resist translating into English two very small excerpts from the same story (“The story of Listo Mercatore”):
“Mercatore was climbing down small stairs when he run across the philosopher, shabbily dressed, sitting on the floor, against the wall, eating lentils.
Haughty, more than usual, with a full stomach, and full of cheekiness due to the wealth that he sported, said to Diogenes:
‘If you had learned to kiss ass to the king, you wouldn’t need to eat lentils.’
And then he laughed, mocking Diogenes poverty.
And yet, the philosopher, looked at him with even greater haughtiness and pride. He had had standing in front of him, Alexander the Great; who was this now? Just a simple rich man?
Diogenes answered to the letter: ‘and you,’ said the philosopher, ‘If you had learned to eat lentils, you wouldn’t need to kiss ass to the king.’”
The rest of this review can be found elsewhere.