The Mad Queen of Portugal Maria I

The first woman to rule Portugal, Maria Francisca Isabel Josefa Antónia Gertrudes Rita Joana (why’d her parents stop there?) married her uncle in order to remain in line for the throne, saw her hometown destroyed… Read More

King João VI of Portugal: Feared Crustaceans, Tricked Napoleon, & Lost Brazil

One reason I love writing historical fiction is the chance to discover real people I’d swear were fabricated in someone’s imagination. King João VI of Portugal is one of these people. The man was born… Read More

Festa Junina a Brazilian Fall Festival

We were walking the streets of Rio de Janeiro yesterday when my daughter piped up “Hey, it’s Festa Junina!” I shook my head and tolld her Festa Junina was last month. She insisted and pointed… Read More

Capoeira: A Martial Art with a Beat

At the summer games this year in Rio de Janeiro, fans of 41 different sports will have a chance to watch competition between the best athletes in their sport. The world’s best judokas, golfers, divers,… Read More

Brazilian Snack Foods: They nailed it!

There’s so much bad news coming out of Brazil lately. The economy is still in tatters. The president is impeached. The interim president is according to most sources a mysogynist, corrupt pig. (And those are… Read More

Dear Brazil, It’s Portugal’s Fault.

I’m currently obsessed with an idea for a historical fiction novel and have spent the last week devouring books on colonial Brazil. (I know you’re jealous.) It’s been fascinating reading actually because it’s all entirely… Read More

Brazil’s Political Crisis Explained for Non-Brazilians

A week ago, Brazil’s House of Deputies voted 367 to 137 to impeach President Dilma Rousseff. The vote lasted five hours and involved a lot of unnecessary shouting, spitting, and confetti. I’m sure you heard… Read More

Dear Brazil: Pay Your Nannies a Living Wage!

Dear reader, if you’re not in the mood for a rant, check back next week. It all started when I received an early morning WhatsApp message from a fellow mom asking the group about rates… Read More

5 Things You’d Never Guess About Brazil

“Do you like Brazil?” I heard this question for the thousandth time last night.  I don’t know why people bother to ask this question.  It’s in the same category as “Does this make me look… Read More