The latest addition to my website is Erico Veríssímo‘s Caminhos cruzados (Crossroads). This tells the stories of a host of characters who live on or have connections with a street in Porto Alegre, where Veríssímo lived. It is a thoroughly miserable tale. Most of the characters, rich or poor, married or single, young or old, are unhappy with their lot. A woman is unhappy about their financial problems. Her husband wins a large sum on the lottery and she is even more unhappy, worried about thieves, beggars and pedlars and worried that they are still living beyond their means. Married men are unfaithful, with lovers or going to prostitutes. Most of the children do not get on with their parents and vice versa. Some are genuinely poor, with one married man having lost his job, spending his time reading novels instead of looking for another job while his wife and son have little to eat. There is no redemption, no happy ending as their lives seem to get worse over the course of the book.