At the end, there is a cliffhanger so brutal I immediately had to go and buy the next volume of this series. . Amazon. Readers’ questions about My Brilliant Friend (L'amica geniale #1). To see what your friends thought of this book, Because in poor neighborhoods where kids see violence (husbands hitting wives) they go out and act this drama out themselves. A modern masterpiece from one of Italy's most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense, and generous-hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila, who represent the story of a nation and the nature of friendship. See all 70 questions about My Brilliant Friend…, 40 of the Most Popular Translated Books on Goodreads. But, yeah, I haven’t heard of you. The relationship between Lila and Lenu, the latter the narrator, has a bit of the M. As my rating reflects, I was overwhelmed by this novel. And he boys seem to feel powerless as they stay trapped in the neighborhood and envy the Solara's. This is a coming of age novel, true, but it is also much more than that. This strange turn of events prompts Elena to begin writing the history of her relationship with Lila, beginning with their childhood in Naples, Italy, in the 1950s. The girls meet at age six in their poor Naples neighborhood. It is epic in the best sense of the word, and yet quiet and personal in its scope. I also want to get The Reader newsletter featuring book deals, recommendations, and giveaways. Oh, you’re an author? I believe that Don Achille was one of them, and that is why the people of the district hated him. Ferrante’s inimitable style lends itself perfectly to a meticulous portrait of these two women that is also the story of a nation and a touching meditation on the nature of friendship. From the age of two until twelve, I lived in Merthyr Tydfil, Wales. I would recommend this book freely to anyone who enjoys history of any kind or a well-written novel. This exquisitely written quartet creates an unsentimental portrait of female experience, rivalry and friendship never before seen in literature. And the world of 1950s and 60s Naples is a brutal one, with young men obsessed to protect brutally their own "honor" and the imagined "honor" of the girls around them. Just started this, but why are all the kids so violent? The narrator Elena tells us everything about her upbringing in a neighborhood where harsh poverty is the norm and family violence is unremarkable, even, for instance, when a father sends a daughter flying out a second story window. This gorgeous novel should bring a host of new readers to one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors.” —The Barnes and Noble Review They create a compelling and exciting inner world together, a stage on which they both are able to dramatise themselves as the heroines of their own fate. In a brief prologue, Elena Greco —a woman in her sixties living in Turin, Italy—receives a call from her friend Lila ’s son back in Naples. What was so bad about him? Why am I staying up late at night to finish? For the duration, it read l. A not so satisfying read for me. The relationship between Lila and Lenu, the latter the narrator, has a bit of the Mozart-Saliari theme: the frustration of the simply smart person up against someone of almost supernatural genius. For the duration, it read like the early pages of a novel you’re trying to get through so you can get to the main storyline. It's like life, in that way. By many other accounts, a great book and writer. Ugh! I received this book as a Christmas present from my boss over a year ago. Neapolitan Novels Series Elena Ferrante Collection 4 Books Bundle (My Brilliant Friend, The Story of a New Name, Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, Story of the Lost Child) Her real identity is unknown except to her publisher because she wishes to have a normal life. And probably there was also some kind of affiliation to the camorra and he surely was a loan-shark. My Brilliant Friend, the HBO series directed by Saverio Costanzo, premiered in 2018. My Brilliant Friend (Italian: L'amica geniale) is an Italian- and Neapolitan-language coming-of-age drama television series created by Saverio Costanzo for HBO, RAI and TIMvision.Named after the first of four novels in the Neapolitan Novels series by Elena Ferrante, it is set to adapt the entire literary work over four eight-episode seasons. The plebs were that fight for food and wine, that quarrel over who should be served first and better, that dirty floor on which the waiters clattered back and forth, those increasingly vulgar toasts. As in “My Brilliant Friend,” Ferrante’s new novel follows a girl who measures her worth against another complicated character. I can say that if I was willing to read the second book I might enjoy it as it was just getting interesting. Set in the ‘50s on the outskirts of Naples, the sprawling story follows author-narrator Elena and her clever best friend Lila as the two strive for greatness, wealth, and knowledge in a neighborhood beset by patriarchal feuds and gendered violence. We’re really hard on Hollywood movies for their saminess, but books are no different. The plebs were us. ", A not so satisfying read for me. I can really think of no better praise than to simply say I loved it, though that seems inadequate commendation for such a supremely talented author. Set in the ‘50s on the outskirts of Naples, the sprawling story follows author-narrator Elena and her clever best friend Lila as the two strive for greatness, wealth, and knowledge in a neighborhood beset by patriarchal feuds and gendered violence. What makes something a page-turner? Maybe, but I sense something very, very authentic about the voice of Lenu and the brutalizing male world that surrounds her and cannot quite believe a man could have written this (see also James Wood's comments on this issue). He made money with black market during WWII... Quite common in Italy at the times, not only in Naples; during the war you could't freely buy food, but. December 9, 2020 by Nart 1 Comment. September 25th 2012 This gorgeous novel should bring a host of new readers to one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors.” —The Barnes and Noble Review My Brilliant Friend is the first title of the bestselling Neapolitan Novels, a four-book series written by pseudonymous author Elena Ferrante and translated by American editor Ann Goldstein. I should try them some time . I found her body repulsive.” Then she meets Lila. Everything fell apart, and by the 1930s unemployment was running at 80%. During the Industrial Revolution, Merthyr had briefly been the iron capital of the world, but things didn't work out; iron ore became harder to mine, the people running the refining works didn't adopt modern methods quickly enough, the town was too far from the sea. But it looks like I’m in the minority. Having a hard time getting through the first hundred pages with all the hitting and rock throwing. I should state that I rarely enjoy reading about childhood from the child’s perspective for an entire book. My Brilliant Friend: Neapolitan Novels, Book One - Ebook written by Elena Ferrante. Reflections of poor children growing up in tough surroundings during a six year period of time. The novel is the story of their friendship and Elena’s attempts to transcend her background of thrift and mean spirited bullying. I read the book in English (because my Italian is not that good yet) and the style was both deeply intimate and jarringly matter-of-fact. Yes! "My Brilliant Friend" is a story of friendship—humbling, raw, human friendship—amid the backdrop of a poor section of postwar Naples, Italy. He made money with black market during WWII... Quite common in Italy at the times, not only in Naples; during the war you could't freely buy food, but you were allowed to acquire only a fixed and small amount of items that you had on a card. Yes! Elena, the narrator of the novel, is in first grade when we first meet her. In general I combine their experiences with my own and Delia, Amalia, Olga, Leda, Nina, Elena, Lenù are born out of that mix. But the echo that you noticed maybe derives from an oscillation inside the characters that I’ve always worked on. The only Ferrante novel I had read before was her "Days of Abandonment," which I thought overheated (and overrated). Farewell, My Orange. This book is more than the sum of its (considerable) parts: Yes, the writing is great, the setting is vivid, the period sometimes shocking, the protagonist relatable and fun, the best friend one of the spunkiest, most endearing characters I've encountered, the supporting cast is varied and dizzying and each stands alone. Embed our reviews widget for this book the movements of others, only on my own” is her encryption.) 65 questions answered. In fact, everyone in the office received a copy – that’s how much our boss wanted us to read it. And he boys seem to feel. Her four-book series of Neapolitan Novels are her most widely known works. Someones had some secret stash of butter, sugar, dry meat, salt, coffee, probably stolen from the American Army. Neapolitan Novels Series Elena Ferrante Collection 4 Books Bundle (My Brilliant Friend, The Story of … They sold those to poor people at 10 time the real value. A modern masterpiece from one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense, and generous-hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. So despite the terrible cover, and a rather idiotic blurb I knew it would be a fine book. But still: why am I gasping in shock when someone wears a particular pair of shoes. Wow, cliffhangers work! Time magazine called Ferrante one of the 100 most influential people in 2016. Still, it only adds to the intrigue, as you can't help but wonder who writes these marvelous books. It took me three years to finally read this, and what an adventure this turn out to be. A modern masterpiece from one of Italy's most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense and generous hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. I retract any previous negative judgment: she is a major contemporary novelist and I will now go on immediately to her second Neapolitan novel, "The Story of a New Name." Book Summary From one of Italy's most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense, and generous-hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila, set in a vibrant and colorful modern-day Naples. A modern masterpiece from one of Italy's most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense and generous hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. The only Ferrante novel I had read before was her "Days of Abandonment," which I thought overheated (and overrated). Oh, Ms. Ferrante, hello there. The short chapters keep the pages turning, and by the end of the novel I found myself very involved in the lives of the characters. Rafaella “Lila” Cerullo, Elena’s friend since childhood, has gone missing. Named as one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People in 2016, Italian author Elena Ferrante is the pseudonym of the author behind some of the most powerful and acclaimed novels of recent times.She is best-known for her internationally bestselling Neapolitan Quartet (My Brilliant Friend, The Story of a New Name, Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay, and The Story of The Lost Child). She lives in a violent and impoverished working class district of Naples where kindred spirits or role models are hard to find. MY BRILLIANT FRIEND is an extraordinarily meaningful and absorbing read. Not within my personal interest radar. A fast-paced coming-of-age novel charting the ups and downs of an intense friendship between two working-class Italian girls. My Brilliant Friend is not the sort of book I would normally pick up as I prefer. Still, it only adds to the intrigue, as you can't help but wonder who writes these marvelous books. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Want more great books? ... By Kara Williamson | Published Jan 15, 2021. Elena Ferrante is a pseudonymous Italian novelist. Though I am undeniably envious of Ferrante's beautiful skill with words, I have to acknowledge that the growing hype around her is totally warranted, and in fact, I want to add to it:-). As all around them the somewhat coarse uneducated boys of the neighbourhood seek to distort and shape the girls to suit their own masculine vanity – “dissolve the margins” of separation - the two girls forge an independence of spirit that is nurtured by the inspiration they find in each other. Different people draw different words from me.” So said Virginia Woolf and this, the forging of identity in relationship, is very much the theme of Elena Ferrante’s compelling novel. By many other accounts, a great book and writer. After finishing Elena Ferrante's first novel in the Neapolitan Trilogy, I am of two minds. “I am made and remade continually. The first part of a trilogy beginning with childhood girlfriends who, come to find out, don’t get past the age of 16 in this first installment. 1 "sweet Jesus...this is the first of four books" stars !! My Brilliant Friend Summary The novel opens with Elena Greco learning that her longtime friend Lila Cerrullo (also known as Raffaella and Lina) has vanished without a trace. A modern masterpiece from one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense, and generous-hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. Photo Credit: Featured still from "My Brilliant Friend" via HBO. In fact, I even read books occasionally. I just don't get the hype. The book is a blow-by-blow confessional, following the two girls from their earliest memories through their early adulthood. It … My True Brilliant Friend Follow the journey of young actors Margherita Mazzucco and Gaia Girace, from first introductions to the series' premiere, as they work to bring the story of two best friends to life. Half way in and beyond, I’m still reading about translating latin and struggling with studying and class exams along with the onset of puberty and its challenges. “I am made and remade continually. Not everything works—Elena’s family feels faintly drawn, and some of the character arcs are uneven—but it’s hard to put the novel down. The cast of characters is large, and for me, an American reader, I was missing some cultural context that made it a little bewildering at first. Seriously, I had no idea it was so dangerous to grow up in Naples. Every little town or neighborhood in Italy had its own black marketer. Ferrante's inimitable style lends itself perfectly to this penetrating portrait of two marvelous women. When I arrived with my parents in 1960, things had become a little better, but the town was still one of the poorest in Britain. However, toward the end of the girls’ story, it is Lila who praises Elena, and encourages her to be "the best of all, boys and girls" (pg. Elena makes it clear that she cannot know what other characters, especially Lila, were feeling or thinking at certain moments. My Brilliant Friend is the first book in Italian writer Elena Ferrante’s world-acclaimed quartet of Neapolitan novels, which documents the friendship between Elena Greco and Lila Cerullo. The first part of a trilogy beginning with childhood girlfriends who, come to find out, don’t get past the age of 16 in this first installment. I have been studying Italian in my free time and so decided to try reading one of the most popular Italian writers of today: Elena Ferrante. He seemed okay to me. Apple Books. This is a coming of age novel, true, but it is also much more than that. I literally, like, open them and turn the pages and read the text inside them and everything. What makes something a page-turner? Start by marking “My Brilliant Friend” as Want to Read: Error rating book. Ferrante's inimitable style lends itself perfectly to a meticulous portrait of these two women that is also the story of a nation and a touching meditation on the nature of friendship. Her four-book series of Neapolitan Novels are her most widely known works. Why am I staying up late at night to finish? I retract any previous negative judgment: she is a major contemporary novelist and I will now go on immediately to her second Neapolitan novel, "The Story of a New Name." by Penguin Random House. I also want to get The Reader newsletter featuring book recommendations and news. The novel opens with a flashback: the narrator is Elena, a woman in her mid-60s, looking back on her six-decade friendship with Lila Cerullo. Much has been said about this book, the first of the Naples trilogy, and by many. A modern masterpiece from one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense, and generous-hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. But the echo that you noticed maybe derives from an oscillation inside the characters that I’ve always worked on. The joy of reading is universal—that's why we're shining a spotlight on some of the most popular translated books on... A modern masterpiece from one of Italy's most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend is a rich, intense and generous hearted story about two friends, Elena and Lila. Google. “Children don’t know the meaning of yesterday, of the day before yesterday, or even of tomorrow, everything is this, now: the street is this, the doorway is this, the stairs are this, this is Mamma, this is Papa, this is the day, this the night.”, “At that moment I knew what the plebs were, much more clearly than when, years earlier, she had asked me. This is contemporary realistic fiction about two women who grow up together in the 1950s and 1960s in a poor neighborhood in Naples. 312). My Brilliant Friend is not the sort of book I would normally pick up as I prefer fantasy fiction. Lila is a wild child with exalted sensibility and intelligence for her age. Read this book using Google Play Books app on your PC, android, iOS devices. Her real identity is unknown except to her publisher because she wishes to have a normal life. The prose is bare, the pacing swift, the plotting episodic, the characters many and quickly sketched; with writing that feels tailored for screen adaptation, the book reads as a literary soap. Through the lives of the. And therein lies my problem with it. Ferrante's inimitable style lends itself perfectly to a meticulous portrait of these two women that is also the story of a nation and a touching meditation on the nature of friendship. My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante . This novel has so much violence that it should come with some kind of rating. Sign up for the Early Bird Books newsletter and get the best daily ebook deals delivered straight to your inbox. I get that. In general I combine their experiences with my own and Delia, Amalia, Olga, Leda, Nina, Elena, Lenù are born out of that mix. My women are strong, educated, self-aware and aware of their rights, just, but at the same time subject to unexpected breakdowns, to subservience of every kind, to mean feelings. In addition to writing, “I study, I translate, I teach. Kobo. When I arrived with my parents in 1960, things had become a little better, but the town was. Book Summary A modern masterpiece from one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors, My Brilliant Friend … What happens. I wasn’t agreeable to her nor was she to me. The first book in Elena Ferrante’s best-selling global phenomenon—a quartet known as the Neapolitan Novels—begins with the disappearance of a sixtysomething narrator’s lifelong best friend. “My Brilliant Friend is a sweeping family-centered epic that encompasses issues of loyalty, love, and a transforming Europe. Probably every book lover I know has recommended this series to me and I get why. That chapter, and our book, ended with this as the very last sentence: “And God said, let there be light, and there was light, and He divided light from darkness, and day from night, and the evening and the morning were the first day.” My brilliant friend, we’ll miss your presence on this tiny jewel. Flies is required reading for a reason I would normally pick up as I prefer fantasy fiction the book. Lila ’ s how much our boss wanted us to read the second book in this to! Downs of an intense friendship between two working-class Italian girls unemployment was running at 80.. Books newsletter and get the Reader newsletter featuring book recommendations and news two. The duration, it only adds to the intrigue, as you ca help. Also affects the way I write “ Lila ” Cerullo, Elena ’ s perspective for an book. Books you want to get the Reader newsletter featuring book recommendations and news with exalted and. 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