Nominated by:

Biblioteca Demonstrativa Maria da Conceição Moreira Salles, Brasilia, Brazil

Publisher of nominated edition:

Oneworld Publications, UK

The Invisible Life of Euridice Gusmao

Martha Batalha    

Translated from the Portuguese by Eric M. B. Becker

Euridice is bright and ambitious. But this is Brazil in the 1940s, and society expects her to be a loving wife and mother. While Antenor is busy congratulating himself on his excellent catch, Euridice spends her spends her humdrum days ironing his shirts and removing the lumps of onion from his food, dreaming of the success she could have made of herself – as a writer, dressmaker or culinary whizz – in another life.

Her free-spirited sister Guida, on the other hand, is the kind of person who was ‘born knowing everything’. When she returns from her failed elopement with stories of heartbreak and loss, the lives of Euridice and her husband are thrown into confusion, with disastrous consequences.

The Invisible Life of Euridice Gusmao is a darkly comic debut, bursting with vibrant Brazilian spirit and unforgettable characters – a jubilant novel about the emancipation of women, perfect for fans of Maria Semple’s Today Will Be Different and Elizabeth Strout’s My Name Is Lucy Barton.

About the author

Martha Batalha studied journalism and literature in Brazil, working first as a reporter before starting her own publishing company. The Invisible Life of Euridice Gusmao is her first novel. Martha lives in Santa Monica, California, with her husband and two children.

Librarian’s comments

A surprising narrative for a first book. Batala offers us a poignantly panorama of a 50s – 60s Rio de Janeiro where her characters touch us in a witty prose that compels us not to leave the book until the very ending. Remarkable accomplishment for an author’s debut. No wonder it had been translated in a few languages and also it has been sold to be a movie.

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