A Death in Brazil by Peter Robb
A Book of Omissions (John MacRae Books)

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Combining travel, history, culture, and his own memories of twenty years of Brazilian life, the author of Midnight in Sicily delves into the past and present of a country that affects our imagination like few other places on earth

From his own near murder in Rio at the hands of an intruder twenty years ago and continuing through the recent slaying of a former president's bagman who looted the country of more than a billion dollars, violent death poses a steady threat in Peter Robb's brilliant travelogue through modern-day Brazil. It's not death, however, that leaves a lasting impression but the exuberant life force that emanates from the country and its people.
Seeking to understand how extreme danger and passion can coexist in a nation for centuries, Robb travels from the cobalt blue shores of southern Brazil to the arid mountains of the northeast recounting four centuries of Brazilian history from the days of slavery to the recent election of the country's first working-class president. Much more than a journey through history, Robb renders in vivid detail the intoxicating pleasures of the food, music, and climate of the country and references the work of Brazil's greatest writers to depict a culture unlike any other.
With a stunning prose style and an endlessly inquisitive intellect, Robb builds layer upon layer of history, culture, and personal reminiscence into a deeply personal, impressionistic portrait of a nation. The reader emerges from A Death in Brazil not just with more knowledge about the country but with a sense of having experienced it and with a deep understanding of its turbulent soul.

About Peter Robb

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Peter Robb has divided his time between Brazil, southern Italy, and Australia during the past quarter century. He is the author of "Midnight in Sicily" and "M: The Man Who Became Caravaggio" (0-312-27474-2), a "Publishers Weekly" Best Book of the Year. He writes for "The Times Literary Supplement" and the "London Review of Books,"
Published January 1, 2004 by Duffy & Snellgrove. 329 pages
Genres: History, Political & Social Sciences, Travel. Non-fiction

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Robb, however, views current President Lula da Silva as something of a messiah in a country where pursuit of sensual pleasures and a big lunch has thus far thwarted development of a public conscience.

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The Guardian

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A Death in Brazil by Peter Robb (Bloomsbury £16.99, pp329) Rio de Janeiro by Ruy Castro (Bloomsbury £8.99, pp244) At a reception on the eve of Brazil's most recent presidential election, supporters of the people's candidate were joined by a surprise guest, the former chief of police, who had once...

Jul 25 2004 | Read Full Review of A Death in Brazil: A Book of ...

The Guardian

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A Death in Brazil by Peter Robb 329pp, Bloomsbury, £16.99 As well as death (there are many besides the one of the title), this book is crammed with two other human essentials: sex and food.

May 29 2004 | Read Full Review of A Death in Brazil: A Book of ...

Publishers Weekly

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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 ...

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