Today, I am sorry to learn of the death of Brazilian writer Zulmira Ribeiro Tavares. Although her work is little known in the English-speaking world, the author – who was born in 1930 – was celebrated in her home country. She won many awards, including the prestigious Jabuti prize.
I was lucky enough to hear about her work through translator Daniel Hahn. I featured his ebook translation of her novella Family Heirlooms as a Book of the month back in 2015 and was delighted by its humour and inventiveness.
Daniel Hahn is keen to find an anglophone home for Tavares’s work and surely an English-language deal would be a fitting tribute to this distinguished literary career.
Publishers, over to you!
Zulmira (as she is known in Brazil) is a powerful writer, and Daniel Hahn is the perfect translator for her works. “Family Heirlooms” is one of her best: a disturbing but unflinching portrait of a woman who has lied to herself for so long that she no longer know the difference from truth. I hope other publishers follow the lead of Frisch & Co., which has an amazing array of books in translation.