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A Death in Brazil: A Book of Omissions (John MacRae Books)

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A Death in Brazil: A Book of Omissions (John MacRae Books) Cover

 

 

Excerpt

From A Death in Brazil:

Murders happen anywhere and mine most nearly happened in Rio. Twenty years later only the scar of a small knife wound on my arm reminds me this is a memory and not a dream. The night went on and on like a dream, with a dream's ungraspable logic, or a Brazilian soap's. Details become wonderfully vivid, like the old carving knife with a long curved and darkened blade carelessly left earlier on the kitchen bench of the Copacabana flat, in the moment it was being held at my throat. My Portuguese lost its rudimentary awkwardness and became unreally fluent very fast. Words I never knew that I knew came pouring from my throat. Things flowed with a dream's weightless speed. The danger lay in the speed. A flailing knife blade moves faster than thought. Movement had to be slowed, the heat lowered. It was the one thing I understood. Let nothing happen. Respond to violence, not with violence, speed, and noise, but with ponderous torpidity, envelop each new threat in slowness. The beautiful Portuguese periods began to roll, slowly, slowly, but with what baroque grace, from my amazing tongue. Obtuse fearlessness stayed the hand with the knife, impassive calm put a little wobble in the spin of violence.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780805076417
Subtitle:
A Book of Omissions
Author:
Robb, Peter
Publisher:
Henry Holt and Co.
Location:
New York
Subject:
General
Subject:
South America
Subject:
Social problems
Subject:
Brazil
Subject:
Latin America - South America
Edition Number:
1st. ed.
Edition Description:
Hardcover
Series:
John MacRae Books
Series Volume:
PRB 02-32E
Publication Date:
20040505
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Includes two maps
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
8.29 x 5.75 x 0.87 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Latin America » Brazil
History and Social Science » World History » South America
Travel » Travel Writing » General
Travel » Travel Writing » Latin America

A Death in Brazil: A Book of Omissions (John MacRae Books) Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Henry Holt & Company - English 9780805076417 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "The death of the title refers to a recent event, but Times Literary Supplement writer Robb gets his mysterious subtitle most directly from Machado de Assis, a 19th-century Brazilian novelist considered at length for his ability to weave discussion of the nation's racial and economic disparities into his wildly popular serial fictions for women's magazines. The term's origins, however, are biblical; First and Second Chronicles were called 'Omissions' because they contained information left out of the preceding Books of Kings. Although Robb tries to fill in some of the gaps in recent Brazilian history, he doesn't so much uncover new data on the spectacularly corrupt 1990 — 1992 presidency of Fernando Collor as pull together some of the many disparate sources. Collor's rise and fall, and the murder of his chief henchman, form a solid backbone for the book, but one from which Robb frequently wanders to ruminate on centuries of Brazilian history filled with eroticism and violent upheaval. He also recounts his own travels through modern Brazil, devoting as much attention to the sensual delights of buchada de bode (stuffed goat's stomach) as he does to a threatening encounter with the military police. The overall result is a bit of a jumble, but it's a delightful jumble: a Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil with a Latin beat. At various points, Robb compares the unfolding Collor scandal to the soap opera staples of Brazilian television, and he's managed to capture the story's lurid surrealism with a deft, erudite touch. Agent, the Wylie Agency. (May)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "[F]ascinating....Similar in approach to At the Tomb of the Inflatable Pig, about Paraguay, but with considerably more art and decorum."
"Review" by , "[A] glittering chiaroscuro portrait....It is the Brazil that Mr. Robb sees beyond the sensations that gives his book its great traveling dimension."
"Review" by , "An affectionate, probing cultural portrait, as stark as it is entertaining."
"Synopsis" by , Robb's chronicle flashes from intimate present day Brazil to a richly detailed and often dangerous past, enhanced by the gorgeous climate, lush landscapes and cobalt-blue waters.
"Synopsis" by ,
Deliciously sensuous and fascinating, Robb renders in vivid detail the intoxicating pleasures of Brazils food, music, literature, and landscape as he travels not only cross country but also back in time—from the days of slavery to modern day political intrigue and murder. Spellbinding and revelatory, Peter Robb paints a multi-layered portrait of Brazil as a country of intoxicating and passionate extremes.

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