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The Love of Singular Men af Victor Heringer
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The Love of Singular Men (udgave 2023)

af Victor Heringer (Forfatter), James Young (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
592450,266 (3.71)4
"In a Rio de Janeiro suburb in the 1970s, a family - the parents, their daughter, and crippled teenage son Camilo - take in an orphan named Cosme. The teen boys unexpectedly fall in love, but their intimate world is shattered when Cosme is killed by a neighbor in a brutal hate crime. Decades later, Camilo returns to his hometown, still haunted by this violence and the long shadow of Brazil's military dictatorship. A fluid, queer coming-of-age story as well as an incisive and unforgiving exploration of Brazilian society and politics, Victor Heringer's moving novel is worthy of Machado de Assis"--… (mere)
Medlem:icolford
Titel:The Love of Singular Men
Forfattere:Victor Heringer (Forfatter)
Andre forfattere:James Young (Forfatter)
Info:Peirene Press (2023), 160 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Vurdering:***
Nøgleord:Ingen

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The Love of Singular Men af Victor Heringer

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Set in Brazil, mainly during the country’s military dictatorship, this unusually structured novel by Victor Heringer (1988–2018) describes the love of two boys living in Queím, a fictional suburb of Rio de Janeiro. In the earlier of two timelines, it is summer, 1976, and 13-year-old Camilo lives in a huge house with his parents and older sister Joana. Camilo was born with a weak leg and uses crutches. But he is spared bullying and taunting since his father, a doctor, works for the junta. Then one day, without explanation, his father arrives home with a boy, Cosme, slightly older than Camilo, who joins the family. Camilo is at first resentful and refuses to accept the new addition, but it’s not long before the two boys are spending all their time together and Camilo finds himself drawn to Cosme in ways that upend his perception of himself and who, as he advances through his teens, he will become. The tale that Heringer tells is a tragic one of sexual awakening, of lovers in a dangerous time. Camilo narrates the story of that fateful summer and a youthful passion that defies massive odds but lasts only briefly before being snuffed out. Camilo introduces Cosme to his friends, a group of local boys who hang together. The decisive before-and-after moment for Camilo and Cosme, and indeed for the novel, comes when the two display their passion for each other openly, kissing each other on the lips in front of their friends. The act hangs in the air for several moments before being accepted, and the group resumes their activities, no questions asked. But that does not mean the danger is past, and when Cosme is murdered barely two weeks later Camilo enters a period of mourning that lasts the rest of his life. In the second timeline, it is thirty years later. Camilo has returned to Queím after many years away spent wandering from place to place, still obsessed with his dead lover and anguished over what has been taken from him. In Queím, he comes across another boy, Renato, whose connection to Cosmo’s death is eventually revealed, takes him into his life and provides for him. Readers will immediately notice the elliptical, fragmentary style that Heringer imposes on his material, a storytelling mode reminiscent of earlier Latin American writers such as Julio Cortázar and Jose Donoso. And though the story is built upon a tragic death, Camilo’s narration is charming, playful, even irreverent. The Love of Singular Men impresses as a youthful work written with confidence and ebullience, making the further tragedy that Heringer, who suffered from depression, took his own life shortly before his 30th birthday sting all the more. ( )
  icolford | Jun 3, 2024 |
This was a Peirene subscription book last year, translated from the original Portuguese. The author, a successful journalist and author died young and I found it kind of hard not to read this with that in mind. The blurbs on the book reference and accentuate this lost potential.

Heringer draws on his own childhood growing up in Rio, from the perspective of an over-protected young boy whose parents are better off than the rest of the community. His life changes when his father brings into the house a young orphan. The adult Camilo looks back at the short, hopeful period for the newly expanded family. Then Cosime's stay with them was cut short by tragedy. Camilo is viewed as 'less than' due to his disability by both his family and the wider community, from well-meaning pity to exclusion and casual violence. His sexuality puts him further outside the pale, with the narrative describing both his present day experiences of exclusion and the effects of childhood attitudes.

Heringer plays around with format, including lists and photos amongst the text, and questioning characters' accounts and experiences. For such a short book, it manages to pack a lot in, from the normalisation of state torture to candomblé and the lives of street children.

"We had no idea of the problems that had plagued our parents' marriage in recent months. We didn't even know who ran the country. We lived under the weird dictatorship of childhood: we looked but didn't see, listened but understood nothing, spoke and were largely ignored. But we were happy under that regime. Like a thick shroud, the fabric of our young lives shielded us completely."
  charl08 | Feb 12, 2024 |
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Forfatter navnRolleHvilken slags forfatterVærk?Status
Victor Heringerprimær forfatteralle udgaverberegnet
Valadares, MateusOmslagsdesignermedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
Young, JamesOversættermedforfatternogle udgaverbekræftet
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"In a Rio de Janeiro suburb in the 1970s, a family - the parents, their daughter, and crippled teenage son Camilo - take in an orphan named Cosme. The teen boys unexpectedly fall in love, but their intimate world is shattered when Cosme is killed by a neighbor in a brutal hate crime. Decades later, Camilo returns to his hometown, still haunted by this violence and the long shadow of Brazil's military dictatorship. A fluid, queer coming-of-age story as well as an incisive and unforgiving exploration of Brazilian society and politics, Victor Heringer's moving novel is worthy of Machado de Assis"--

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