The Lying Life of Adults by Elena Ferrante
English | 2020|General Fiction/Classics| ePUB | 2.3 MB
Soon to be a NETFLIX Original Series.
A POWERFUL NEW NOVEL set in a divided Naples by ELENA FERRANTE, the New York Times best-selling author of My Brilliant Friend and The Lost Daughter.
“There’s no doubt [the publication of The Lying Life of Adults] will be the literary event of the year.”—ELLE Magazine
Giovanna’s pretty face is changing, turning ugly, at least so her father thinks. Giovanna, he says, looks more like her Aunt Vittoria every day. But can it be true? Is she really changing? Is she turning into her Aunt Vittoria, a woman she hardly knows but whom her mother and father clearly despise? Surely there is a mirror somewhere in which she can see herself as she truly is.
Giovanna is searching for her reflection in two kindred cities that fear and detest one another: Naples of the heights, which assumes a mask of refinement, and Naples of the depths, a place of excess and vulgarity. She moves from one to the other in search of the truth, but neither city seems to offer answers or escape.
I took advantage of an afternoon when they were both out and went to rummage in a dresser in their bedroom where my mother kept the albums containing, in an orderly arrangement, the photographs of herself, my father, and me. I knew those albums by heart. I had often leafed through them: they mostly documented my parents’ relationship and my almost thirteen years of life. And so I knew that, mysteriously, there were a lot of pictures of my mother’s relatives, very few of my father’s, and, among those few, not a single one of Aunt Vittoria. Still, I remembered that somewhere in that dresser was an old metal box that held random images of my parents before they met. Since I’d hardly ever looked at them, and always with my mother, I hoped to find in there some pictures of my aunt.
I found the box in the bottom of the wardrobe, but first I decided to re-examine conscientiously the albums that showed the two of them as fiancés, the two of them as bride and groom frowning at the center of a small wedding party, the two of them as an always happy couple, and, finally, me, their daughter, photographed an excessive number of times, from birth to now. I lingered in particular on the wedding pictures. My father was wearing a visibly rumpled dark suit and was scowling in every image; my mother, beside him, not in a wedding dress but in a cream-colored suit, with a veil the same shade, had a vaguely excited expression. I already knew that among the thirty or so guests were some friends from the Vomero they still saw and my mother’s relatives, the good grandparents from Museo. But still I looked and looked again, hoping for a figure even in the background that would lead me somehow or other to a woman I had no memory of. Nothing. So I moved on to the box and after many attempts managed to get it open.