In the village of the ghost bells, the church chimes ring—even though the church has no bells. One of the neighbors wants to buy dreams—or is she a dream that someone else is dreaming? Where and why do dreams become nightmares? These are only some of the fascinating questions raised in Village of the Ghost Bells, Edla Van Steen’s second novel. First published in 1983 as Coraçôes mordidos, the novel tells the story of the would-be utopian community built on an old plantation of the outskirts of São Paulo, Brazil. Its atmosphere is dreamlike, often verging on the supernatural, and strange events signal the transformation of the utopian dream into a nightmare. Ultimately destroyed by greed, corruption, and exploitation, the community becomes a microcosm of the Brazilian socioeconomic system, in which it takes all of a person’s warmth, idealism, passion, and humor to survive the bleak environment.