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on 8 March 2014
"She Doesn't Know How To Scream" is one of the numerous subtitles for this novel. In a way, Lispector seems to be feeling that she ought to be screaming, or someone should, yet, also, there is something to be said for the inner life that experiences the shots and pangs before the cry out loud. It is here in this void, Lispector often dwells, questioning the empty spaces.

"I have to add a little something that's very important for understanding the narrative: that it's accompanied from beginning to end by a very slight and constant toothache, something to do with chipped enamel. I also guarantee that the story will be accompanied by the plangent violin played by a thin man right on the street corner. His face is narrow and yellow as if he'd already died. And maybe he had."

And there's humour. And there's a jaunty curiosity in all things mundane to spectacular (explosion). It's poetic in its vision, its close ups of small and giant things, yet not pretentious, nor purposely abstract. Though it does have mysterious moments when the words don't all together mean in an obvious way - but they impart something. Something of our condition, the things under the surface life of human beings.

It exudes intimacy with subject and reader. And warmth. It breathes with truths but not ones you could write down on a list. The enigma of life is right here.
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on 6 April 2015
Whilst this piece is clearly masterfully produced, its characters are less than pitiable (and deliberately so) making the content painfully morbid. An accurate portrayal of the life/lives of a nobody among nobodies, this is probably a valuable insight into 'third-world' living. But what a drag!
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on 9 April 2015
Out of many late discoveries I made, Clarice Lispector is one of them. From a coincidental find at Waterstone's display now I am in love with her works.
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on 22 June 2016
Clarice Lispector is one of my favourite writers and this, one of her best works but this translation is definitely not my favourite.
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