Translated from the original Portuguese by Julia Sanches
From one of Brazil’s most important living writers, a powerful reflection on the effects of isolation and feelings of inadequacy in our time. Sick and abandoned by his wife and son, Oséias decides to go back to his hometown after twenty years away. During this time apart, he has heard about his family only through sporadic phone calls from his younger sister, Isabela. The shadow of the suicide of their sister Lígia, when she was fifteen, lingers over Oséias as he tries to reestablish contact with his siblings. Each of them is absorbed in their own world: Rosana and her obsession with fitness; Isabela and her struggle to survive; João Lúcio and his isolation. All of them are branded by loneliness, but most of all Oséias, who, misunderstood by his family members and old acquaintances, decides to put an end to his journey. Late Summer can be read as both the realistic story of a displaced man tortured by his unsuccessful attempt to redeem his past, and as a portrait of contemporary society, in which social classes have ruptured any form of dialogue between them, and people have become rogue planets whose paths cross occasionally, risking mutual destruction.
About the Author/Translator:
Luiz Ruffato was born in Cataguases, a small industrial city in southeastern Brazil. The grandson of immigrants who fled northern Italy, Ruffato worked throughout his youth as a bar clerk, textile worker, street book vendor, and turner to supplement the income of his parents, a popcorn vendor and a laundress. He earned a journalism degree from the Federal University of Juiz de Fora, and later settled in São Paulo. He is the author of eight novels as well as short-story collections, poetry, and essays.
Julia Sanches translates from Portuguese, Spanish, and Catalan. She has translated works by Susana Moreira Marques, Daniel Galera, Claudia Hernández, and Geovani Martins, among others, and is a founding member of Cedilla & Co.
Nominating Library’s Comments:
Late Summer is an excellent reflection on the effects of isolation. A book that shows both a portrait of contemporary society, in which social classes have ruptured any form of a dialogue between them, and a realistic story of a man tortured by his unsuccessful attempt to redeem his past.
The main character, Oséias, abandoned by his wife and son, decides to go back to his hometown after twenty years away. On a six-day journey trying to reconnect to his family, as a flaneur, he retraces his boyhood and shares by streams of consciousness old memories and thoughts mingled with a detailed narrative of the events of the journey. The novel also unveils the feeling of inadequacy present in our time and presents a philosophical and perennial question of belonging. – Sistema Nacional de Bibliotecas Públicas/Biblioteca Demonstrativa do Brasil