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Inspired by a true crime story from Porto Alegre, Diorama is a mix of coming of age and mystery novel, marked by displacement, sexuality issues, and never-closing wounds; a unique study about the scars left in families undone by crime and prejudice.


A family hunting trip in the Rio Grande do Sul pampas. A taxidermist restoring animals in a Natural History museum. A state representative shot dead with a rifle in the return of Brazilian democracy. A romance that must be kept secret due to prejudice. These vivid scenes are only a few of those interwoven in a sensitive, engaging book, Carol Bensimon's first since winning the best novel Jabuti award for O clube dos jardineiros de fumaça

 

Told from the perspective of Cecília Matzenbarcher, Diorama twists and turns through an existence marked by a brutal crime. While the adult protagonist tries to keep up the life she remade in the United States, her childhood self takes the reader back to the1980s in Porto Alegre, revealing, little by little, the intimate and political details of a murder that shocked the state of Rio Grande do Sul. Adding to that, the various voices of witnesses and people involved in the crime weave a bittersweet universe of shattered relationships, secrets, and ever-watchful violence. In filmic prose, with a rock soundtrack and interspersed reflections about nature and the fractures we carry, Bensimon builds a moving family history in Diorama.

 

 

 

"Diorama goes from the big to the small as if opening a panoramic view over the city, only to get close to the horror that each street hides."

Matheus Baldi, O Globo

 

One of the great voices of his generation, Bensimon has mastered the construction of characters who detach from their past and find themselves, at some point, forced to confront places and people they had left behind."

Walter Porto, Folha de S. Paulo

"Diorama fuses the political weight of its conclusions with the lightness of the intrigue. The quality of the text is also its structure: chapters that end with hooks, references that come back with a new meaning, dialogues that alternate with descriptions and essayism without losing the pulse of the plot."

Michel Laub, Valor Econômico