Set in the sparse frontier settlements of northeastern Brazil, Backlands tells the true story of a group of nomadic outlaws who reigned over the area from about 1922 until 1938. Taking from the rich and feared by the poor, they were led by the famously charismatic bandit Lampiao.
A one-eyed goat rancher who first set out to avenge his father's murder in a lawless land, Lampiao proved to be too good a leader, fighter, and strategist to ever return home again. By 1925 he commanded the biggest gang of outlaws in Brazil. Known to this day as a "prince," Lampiao had everything: brains, money, power, charisma, and luck. Everything but love, until he met Maria Bonita.
"You teach me to make lace, and I'll teach you to make love"-this was the song the bandits marched to, and it was Maria Bonita who made it come true. She was stuck in a loveless marriage when she met Lampiao, but she rode off with him, becoming "Queen of the Bandits." Together the couple-still celebrated folk heroes-would become the country's most wanted figures, protecting their extraordinary freedom through cunning.
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by Victoria Abbott
by Melanie Benjamin, Jenna Blum, Amanda Hodgkinson, Pam Jenoff, Sarah Jio, Sarah McCoy, Kristina McMorris, Alyson Richman, Erika Robuck, Karen White
by Heather Blake
by Linda O. Johnston
by Katie French
by Jamie C. Martin, Tsh Oxenreider
by Rachelle J. Christensen
by Lori Bregman, Ursula Cary
"Lampiao (Virgulino Ferreira da Silva, 1897-1938), a Brazilian outlaw, ruled the Sertao, a rural area in northeastern Brazil, between 1922 and 1938. Carla Mercer-Meyer narrates this fictional memoir of the life of Lampiao and his wife, Maria Bonita. At its core, BACKLANDS is a timeless tale of the conflict between outlaws and lawmen. Mercer-Meyer's voice is soft as she reads the narrative, sharply enunciating the Portuguese words and Brazilian terms. Dialogue is performed with subtle inflections and softer tones for the women's voices. Mercer-Meyer's laconic performance echoes the endlessly hard, difficult life in the Brazilian Backlands. Told in loosely connected vignettes that drift back and forth between 1922 and 1938, the story is such that listeners must pay careful attention or risk getting lost in the Backlands. M.B.K. © AudioFile 2015, Portland, Maine"
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