Published by Plon Roman in Paris, translated from the Brazilian by D.T. Moutonnier with a foreword by Paulo Mendes Campos. First Edition. Cover art by Henri Matisse. Condition: Fair.
The incredible first novel that earned her the name ‘Hurricane Clarice’. 🌪
First edition of the French translation with a cover design by Henri Matisse. Near to the Wild Heart was Clarice Lispector’s first novel, published in 1943 around her 23rd birthday.
While a Law student in Brazil, Clarice began writing down ideas into a notebook, but feared they were more of a pile of notes rather than a fully fledged novel. Her friend Lúcio Cardoso, a slightly older novelist, assured her that the fragments were a book in themselves. “When I reread what I’ve written,” she told him, “I feel like I’m swallowing my own vomit.” Near to the Wild Heart tells the story of Joana, from her wild, creative childhood, as the 'little egg' who writes poems for her father, through her marriage to the faithless Otávio and on to her decision to make her own way in the world.
Clarice borrowed the title from James Joyce, “He was alone. He was unheeded, happy, and near to the wild heart of life.”
“I met Clarice Lispector at the exact moment that she published Near to the Wild Heart. The meeting took place in a restaurant in Cinelândia. We had lunch and our conversation strayed from literary matters. … The least I can say is that she was stunning. It was autumn, the leaves in the square were falling, and the grayness of the day helped underscore the beauty and luminosity of Clarice Lispector. Alongside the foreign climate was that strange voice, the guttural diction which rings in my ears to this day. “ -Lêdo Ivo