Books

This list is a work in progress

The following list of 35 books was gathered from several “best of” lists from both English and Portuguese sources. The goal is to eventually have an authoritative catalogue of books about the city. If a book has an English and Portuguese version, I’ve put the latter in italics. Where possible, I linked the covers with their respective Amazon.com page. If you are in Brazil, I recommend Estante Virtual.

NON-FICTION

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Dancing with the Devil in the City of God:
Rio de Janeiro and the Olympic Dream
by Juliana Barbassa

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The Rio de Janeiro Reader:
History, Culture, Politics
by Daryle Williams and Amy Chazkel

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How to Be a Carioca:
The Alternative Guide for the Tourist in Rio
by Priscilla Goslin

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Secret Rio
Rio Secreto
by Manoel de Silva Almeida, Marcio Roiter & Thomas Gonglez

FAVELAS

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Drugs and Democracy in Rio de Janeiro
by Enrique Desmond Arias

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A Poverty of Rights
by Brodwyn Fisher

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Laughter Out of Place:
Race, Class, Violence, and Sexuality in a Rio Shantytown
by Donna Goldstein

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Favela:
Four Decades of Living on the Edge in Rio de Janeiro
by Janice Perlman

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Hard Times in the Marvellous City:
From Dictatorship to Democracy in the Favelas of Rio de Janeiro
by Bryan McCann

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Culture is our Weapon:
Making Music and Changing Lives in Rio de Janeiro
by Damian Platt and Patrick Neate

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Understanding Sociabilities:
Identity, Culture and Resistance in Rio de Janeiro’s Favelas
by Sandra Jovchelovitch and Jacqueline Priego-Hernández

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City of God
Cidade de Deus
by Paulo Lins

HISTORY

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1808 / 1822 / 1889
(1808 is the only one in English)
Laurentino Gomes

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História das Ruas do Rio
Brasil Gerson

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O Rio Antes Do Rio
Rafael Freitas da Silva

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Pereira Passos:
Um Haussmann tropical: a renovacao urbana da cidade do Rio de Janeiro no inicio do seculo XX

by Jaime Benchimol

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Trabalho, lar e botequim:
O cotidiano dos trabalhadores no Rio de Janeiro da belle époque

by Sidney Chalhoub

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Uma História do Samba: as origens
by Lira Neto

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Cidade Partida
by Zuenir Ventura

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O Rio é Assim
by José Carlos Oliveira

FICTION

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The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas
Memórias Póstumas de Brás Cubas
by Machado de Assis

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Dom Casmurro
(same in Portuguese)
by Machado de Assis

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Cinco Minutos
by José de Alencar

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Senhora
(same in Portuguese)
by José de Alencar

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High Art
A Grande Arte
by Rubem Fonseca

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Crimes of August
Agosto
by Rubem Fonseca

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Memoirs of a Police Sergeant
Memórias de um sargento de milícias
Manuel Antonio de Almeida

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The Enchanting Soul of the Streets
A alma encantadora das ruas
João do Rio

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The Sad End of Major Policarpo Quaresma
Triste fim de Policarpo Quaresma
Lima Barreto

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Recordações do Escrivão Isaías Caminha
by Lima Barreto

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Cemitério dos Vivos
by Lima Barreto

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The Slum
O Cortiço

by Aluísio de Azevedo

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A Vida como Ela É
by Nelson Rodriguês

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