The Chandelier

Clarice Lispector (Author) Benjamin Moser (Translator)
& 1 more


The Chandelier, written when Lispector was only twenty-three, reveals a very different author from the college student whose debut novel, Near to the Wild Heart, announced the landfall of "Hurricane Clarice."
Virginia and her cruel, beautiful brother, Daniel, grow up in a decaying country mansion. They leave for the city, but the change of locale leaves Virginia's internal life unperturbed. In intensely poetic language, Lispector conducts a stratigraphic excavation of Virginia's thoughts, revealing the drama of Clarice's lifelong quest to discover "the nucleus made of a single instant"--and displaying a new face of this great writer, blazing with the vitality of youth.

Product Details

$16.95  $15.59
New Directions Publishing Corporation
Publish Date
May 28, 2019
5.5 X 0.8 X 7.9 inches | 0.7 pounds
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Clarice Lispector (1920-1977), the greatest Brazilian writer of the twentieth century, has been called "astounding" (Rachel Kushner), "a penetrating genius" (Donna Seaman, Booklist), and "one of the twentieth century's most mysterious writers" (Orhan Pamuk).

Benjamin Moser was born in Houston. He is the author of Why This World: A Biography of Clarice Lispector, a finalist for the National Book Critics' Circle Award and a New York Times Notable Book. For his work bringing Clarice Lispector to international prominence, he received Brazil's first State Prize for Cultural Diplomacy. He has published translations from French, Spanish, Portuguese, and Dutch. A former books columnist for Harper's Magazine and The New York Times Book Review, he has also written for The New Yorker, Conde Nast Traveler, and The New York Review of Books.

Magdalena Edwards is a writer, translator, and actor. Her work has appeared in the Boston Review, the Paris Review Daily, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and the Millions


One of the twentieth century's most mysterious writers.--Orhan Pamuk (01/22/2018)
Better than Borges.--Elizabeth Bishop (01/22/2018)
Utterly original and brilliant, haunting and disturbing.--Colm Tóibín (01/22/2018)
Virginia's memory of the chandelier as an adult is as strange and ambiguous as the rest of the moments in the novel, deeply introspective and without a clear meaning, but the energy and spiritual wonder of her descriptions make the cryptic writing all the more resonant and spiritually urgent for both her character and her reader.--Mike Broida"The Refugee Woman Who Shaped Brazilian Literature" (03/27/2018)
The revival of the hypnotic Clarice Lispector has been one of the true literary events of the 21st century.--Parul Sehgal (03/27/2018)
It's a shaggy stop-motion masterpiece, plotless and argument-less and obsessed with the nature of thought....Every page vibrates with feeling. It's not enough to say that Lispector bends language, or uses words in new ways. Plenty of modernists do that. No one else writes prose this rich.-- (04/05/2018)
A vulnerable and moving performance--with a heart-stopping undeniable quantity of genius.-- (03/27/2018)
Lispector's signature brilliance lies in the minutely observed gradations of her characters' feelings and of their elusive, half-formed thoughts.-- (03/23/2018)
This is a haunting family fable, and will fascinate those seeking a glimpse at Lispector's genius in development.--The Chandelier (01/22/2018)
[L]yrical, sensual, philosophical...gorgeous, unsettling prose...-- (01/22/2018)
Lispector's signature narrative style, which borders on stream-of-consciousness, is the vehicle for Virginia's existential dilemmas and her observations about a world from which she often seems removed. The Chandelier includes all the earmarks of Lispector's other work, too: a deep anguish, a search for the heart of human existence, and the unbearable weight of a solitude that is imperative to ultimate freedom.--Eric Becker "Book Review: The Chandelier "
It is a lyrical outpouring of sensation and perception...Lispector is up to some extraordinary things.-- (06/08/2018)
The Chandelier is an extraordinary book.--Reinaldo Laddaga (03/23/2018)
The Chandelier will reward those who enjoy challenging works about the power of the mind and about how we might grow up--without destroying who we have been, without fearing who we might come to be.-- (03/23/2018)
The Chandelier is not a book to be read at a fast pace, but rather one to be slowly sipped and savored, a few pages at a time--one that forces us to find other modes of reading, of approaching literature, committed to finding the pleasures of the text.--Christina Soto van der Plas"Un-Reading Clarice Lispector's "The Chandelier"" (03/27/2018)