Ferrante Fever has gripped Italy. Last night, across the country reading vigils were held, with groups of up to 100 readers showing up to devour cult Italian author Elena Ferrante’s new novel, La Vita Bugiarda Degli Adulti, just hours after its release.
It’s been almost five years since Ferrante’s last book, The Story of the Lost Child, which culminated her 4-part series, The Neapolitan Novels. Set in and around Naples, the books centre around the lives of childhood friends Elena (Lenù) and Raffaella (Lila), following their formative experiences of friendship, through to adolescence and adulthood, where they navigate love, loss, and the changing nature of their own relationship with each other. Holding up a magnifying glass to the complex nature of female friendship, Ferrante captures their unique bond in all of its passion.
Ferrante’s portrayal of the beloved, messy relationship between Lena and Lenu has already won her a cult following worldwide, with the series selling over 10 million copies in 40 countries. Already, the adaptations have been incoming. Last year, an HBO TV series was released (pictured above), while a stage adaptation will open at the National Theatre on Tuesday.
While the Italian version of Ferrante’s latest book, The Lying Life of Adults, won’t be hitting British shelves until June 9, 2020, rest assured, Ferrante isn’t the only author deft at distilling the female bond to page. We recommend spending the rest of the year hibernating with the other titles, like Ferrante’s new novel, put women and friendship at the centre of the page.
Image courtesy of HBO