In this classic of South American literature, Aires returns home to his native, Rio after many years abroad and is captivated by a young widow whom he sees praying at her husband's graveside. Her charm and the tragic story of her brief marriage increase his fascination, and soon he is indulging in impossible dreams. But the Brazil that Aires remembers from his youth is changing fast. A new era is dawning with events such as the coming of the railway and the abolition of slavery. The future belongs to a younger generation, to men like Tristao, the doctor and political candidate, who is also an admirer of the beautiful widow. This is a story of broken dreams, love, and obsession—universal themes that give the author's work the timeless quality for which it is renowned.
About the Author
Machado de Assis has been widely acknowledged as Brazil's greatest writer. He is the author of Dom Casmurro, Epitaphs for a Small Winner, Esau and Jacob, Quincas Borba, and Yayá Garcia.