by Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (translator)
I think I’ll probably read anything and everything that Elena Ferrante writes. I devoured the four-part Neapolitan novels and loved them. This new one is really good, but not as riveting as her former series. It’s another coming-of-age novel about a young woman in Naples. The protagonist starts as a teenager, unlike the Neapolitan novels which starts with the girls at a very young age.
The writing is raw, intimate, and lyrical. You definitely feel immersed in the protagonist’s head and heart. The main theme is her relationship with all of the adults in her life and coming to realize that they all posture and lie to each other to get what they want. The concept of truth is explored again and again through many different angles.
The core of the novel is actually Giovanna’s relationship with her aunt Vittoria. And what a character her aunt is!! You love her and hate her at the same time. She becomes a driving force in Giovanna‘s development and watching it unfold is what really makes this book.
Oh and the fact that it is narrated by Marisa Tomei, who does such an awesome Italian accent, is a wonderful plus!