Cidade de Deus, the City of God welcome to one of Rio's most notorious slums. A place where the streets are awash with drugs, where violence can erupt at any moment, over drugs, money and love but also where the samba beat rocks til dawn, where the women are the most beautiful on earth, and where one young man wants to escape his background and become a photographer. Paulo Lins was born in Rio de Janeiro and at age seven moved to the 'City of God' housing project. He escaped the cycle of violence there to become an internationally celebrated writer, and still lives in Rio. This novel is the result of extended research in the housing project where Lins was raised. He spent eight years interviewing people and researching the drug trafficking and gang warfare that marked the history of the neighbourhood in the 1970s and 80s. Based on a true story, this is a sprawling, magnificently told epic about the history of gang life in Rio's favelas. This is the original novel of the hugely acclaimed film.