|Clarice Lispector, a Brazilian-Jewish author, was the best known female Latin American writer of the 20th centry. The Passion According to G.H. is her best known book.|
The Passion According to G.H. (1964)
by Clarice Lispector
Part Kafka, part Beckett, The Passion According to G.H. is this Brazilian author's best known book. The Passion According to G.H. takes the form of a monologue by an unnamed protagonist, an unnamed, presumably wealthy, single woman living in a high rise in Rio de Janeiro. She is cleaning out the quarters of the departed maid, when she finds a cockroach, which she kills, and in the famous denouement, eats.
Though the cockroach will remind the reader of Kafka, the form of the novel very closely resembles the books of Beckett's trilogy, where action and plot are nearly nonexistent. Lispector earns her place onto the 1001 Books list by virtue of her widely acknolwedged status as, "Best female Latin American writer of the 20th century" but she is also the only female Latin American writer to make it into the 1001 Books list at all, so you could argue that she is there simply to earn diversity points.
I wasn't particularly taken by The Passion According to G.H., especially so soon after struggling through Beckett's frustrating trilogy of nothing.