Author: Victor Rangel Ribeiro

1571310193 | HB | pp. 354 | 1998 | Milkweed Editions

Tivolem by Victor Rangel Ribeiro is a blending of  old-world Christian culture with traditional Indian society, It tells the story of people building a future in the shadow of their past.

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It is the blending of old-world Christian culture with traditional Indian society that makes life in Tivolem, a village in the old Portuguese colony of Goa, so unique. Connected to the outside world in the 1930s only by occasional travelers, static-filled radio broadcasts, and the journeys abroad of local residents, Tivolem remains an island as yet barely touched — but not unchanged — by the rise of Hitler and threat of war in Europe and the rise of Gandhi and nationalistic ferment in neighbouring British India.

Against this rich backdrop, the author focuses on young Marie-Santana, who finds sanctuary in the quiet daily life of Tivolem after experiencing love and betrayal abroad. In the warmth of her grandmother’s house she hopes to recover from the heartbreak and financial ruin inflicted by a former fiancé.

Marie-Santana finds the village filled with eccentric personalities and a multitude of unexpected adventures. She becomes attracted to her next-door neighbour, Simon Fernandes, but village gossip and a past deceit involving Simon’s long-lost brother remind the lovers that they — like the village — are inexorably tied to their pasts.

Filled with tantalizing, lush detail and gentle humour, Tivolem is a captivating novel that transports readers back to a unique and very memorable place and time.

Additional information


Victor Rangel Ribeiro





Year of Publication:





Milkweed Editions





Country of Origin:

United States of America

About the Author

Born in India, the author has lived in Goa, Bombay, Calcutta, and New York, working as a writer and editor in these last three cities. He settled in the United States in 1956. A member of American Mensa, he has taught in New York schools and is currently on the international online creative writing faculty at Fairleigh Dickinson University, New Jersey. Rangel-Ribeiro is a former Music Director of New York’s Beethoven Society and author of several books on music. Booklist picked his Tivolem as one of the twenty best first novels of 1998.


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