The Island of Darkness joserodriguessantos January 1, 2023
A Ilha das Trevas
The Island of Darkness

Paulino da Conceição’s life is tormented by a terrible secret. He and his family witnessed the Portuguese withdrawal from East Timor and all the ensuing events, thus becoming a mere pawn in circumstances beyond his control that took place between Indonesia’s invasion in 1975 and the 1999 independence referendum.

There is only one person in the world to whom Paulino can disclose his secret – but does he have the courage to open his heart?

The life and tragedy of a Timorese family under Indonesian occupation is the subject of José Rodrigues dos Santos’ first novel, a prelude to the great Portuguese blockbusters he wrote later on – such as Codex 632, The Einstein Enigma and The Seventh Seal.

This is a poignant novel where fiction draws on reality to depict, with a dramatic, powerful and intense writing, the tragic truth that only literary creation, when working alongside history, can expose.