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Nine Nights

by Bernardo Carvalho

Set in Brazil this is a story shrouded in a strange mystery where there are no easy conclusions to be drawn. Blending fact and fiction, it recounts the disappearance of Buell Quain through the letter she left behind. What follows is one man's quest for a possible missing eighth letter. Not the easiest of reads but certainly one to think about after the final page.

Extract

This is for when you get here and start to fear searching further, though by that point you'll have already gone too far. He must have told you about the ports he visited, the things he'd seen, always pushing off, across the world, an endless, circular search, and about the things he brought home, not the objects that haunted his mother after his death but whatever it was that got stuck in his eyes leaving him with the expression he vainly tried to hide and which I glimpsed, through his distraction and fatigue when he arrived in Carolina. Those eyes carried the things he had seen in the world, the death of a thief under the lash in a city of Arabia, the terror of a boy operated on by his own father, the surrender of people who begged for him to take them along with him, wherever he was going, as if he could grant them salvation.
Translated by Benjamin Moser

Parallels

Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
 

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