Review: Sao Bernardo

sao bernardo

Title: Sao BernardoSao Bernardo

Author: Graciliano Ramos

Rating: 5 stars


I have an interesting story/relationship with this book. The first time I was supposed to read it, I was in 9th grade and I had to read it for the finals. It took me too long to get the book which left me with little time to read it. As a result, I read until the middle, then skipped to the last few pages. I got a grade good enough to pass the class, but that was it.

I found the book interesting, though, so much that I decided to read it on my own. To this day, it’s still one of the most fascinating and interesting novels I’ve ever read. The book is not long, but the characters are intense and rich. The atmosphere, scenarios and the culture are vivid and involves you so much it’s easy to picture in your mind, even if it describes a world completely different from the one you live in.

Paulo Honorio is as arid as the land he lives in and where he built his life. Madalena is like the world he tries and fails to understand. This is a story of love, misunderstandings, pain and regret, a story where characters and land are sometimes so much alike it’s hard to separate one from the other.

I cannot recommend it enough.

It was originally published in Portuguese, but I believe it was translated to many other languages.

If you want to experience the richness of Brazilian literature, this is a good place to start.