“Noll’s daring and original style and sensibility has been brought to life in this expert translation. Lord is a brilliant introduction to a hero of Brazilian literature who deserves to be widely known in the English-speaking world.” — Jenny Offill, author of Dept. of Speculation
As Lord begins, a Brazilian author is arriving at London’s Heathrow airport for reasons he doesn’t fully understand. Only aware that he has been invited to take part in a mysterious mission, the Brazilian starts to churn with anxiety. Torn between returning home and continuing boldly forward, he becomes absorbed by fears: What if the Englishman who invited him here proves malign? Maybe he won’t show up? Or maybe he’ll leave the Brazilian lost and adrift in London, with no money or place to stay? Ever more confused and enmeshed in a reality of his own making, the Brazilian wanders more and more through London’s immigrant Hackney neighborhood, losing his memory, adopting strange behaviors, experiencing surreal sexual encounters, and developing a powerful fear of ever seeing himself reflected in a mirror.
A novel about the unsettling space between identities, and a disturbing portrait of dementia from the inside out, Lord constructs an altogether original story out of the ways we search for new versions of ourselves. With jaw-dropping scenes and sensual, at times grotesque images, renowned Brazilian author João Gilberto Noll grants us stunning new visions of our own personalities and the profound transformations that overtake us throughout life.
“[A] manic treatise on travel and transformation . . . for a novel guided by delirium, Lord is remarkably suspenseful and assured.” — New York Times
“Caught in the mind of a man unmoored, Noll’s novel bears witness to a grotesque second birth. All attempts to renovate, reincarnate, and, ultimately, escape the body’s animal demands only point to greater forces—not only those of fear, arousal, hunger, and health, but self-conception and self-contemplation, too.” — Foreword Reviews
“A novel about the unsettling space between identities . . . Noll grants us stunning new visions of our own personalities and the profound transformations that overtake us throughout life.” — Tor.com
“In dream-like prose that soon turns feverish, João Gilberto Noll manages to expansively embody the disorienting experiences of migration. Just like Joseph K., who was arrested without knowing the nature of his crime, the middle-age Brazilian writer who leaves Porto Alegre knows very little about why he has been offered an airplane ticket to London and a home in Hackney. Soon, he finds himself forgetting his language, reinventing his sexuality, and walking aimlessly through a city he wishes never to leave. Masterful, sensuous, and disquieting.” — Cristina Rivera Garza, author of The Taiga Syndrome
“Noll’s books are wild, violent, and fast-moving.” — Los Angeles Review of Books
“One of the most celebrated writers in contemporary Brazilian literature.” — Guernica magazine
“The haunting sensibilities of João Gilberto Noll’s fiction point to why it’s continuing to find readers now, and why it continues to be all too relevant. This is unsettling fiction in the best way.” — The Culture Trip
“João Gilberto Noll could make any life into a compelling novel.” — Music & Literature