Casa de caba

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Casa de caba
Edyr Augusto,
Boitempo Editorial (São Paulo), 2004

EDYR AUGUSTO has done for literature what Pulp Fiction did for the cinema in a work devoid of heroes that brings the rotting interior of Brazil to life. Set in the depths of Amazonia, Casa de Caba begins with a sea of blood from which ripples wash across a continent. At a sawmill in the depths of Amazonia and a man is forced to choose between sacrificing his family or his business. Four members of this important and wealthy Brazilian family are cut down in their own home by contract killers. One survivor is being pursued; another member of the family who is in the US tries to uncover the reason for these murders – and vows revenge. This is a Brazil far from the glitz of the big cities in which corrupt politicians dependent on exploitation of the Amazon’s riches and the violence endorsed by the powerful hold sway. A concise narrative weaving together a clever plot, Augusto uses his consummate skill as a storyteller (Cronicas da cidade morena, 1999; Os éguas, 1998; Moscow, 2001) to deliver each blow with script-like ease. This is a deep-fried rib of revenge with a lusty hot sauce cooked in a steaming Amazonian boiler – then served up with blood. It won’t be long before this one finds its way into English, and then hold on to your circular saw. – EC