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Elena Ferrante

Elena Ferrante

Elena Ferrante is the author of The Days of Abandonment (Europa, 2005), Troubling Love (Europa, 2006), The Lost Daughter (Europa, 2008) and the Neapolitan Quartet (Europa 2012-2015). She is also the author of a children’s picture book illustrated by Mara Cerri, The Beach at Night.

All Elena Ferrante's books

Upcoming events

In discussing Alice Sebold’s new book, which is fascinating and brilliantly original, I’ll try to reveal only what Helen Knightly herself, the first-person narrator, says in the first line...
If you are looking for uplifting bromides about the intimate mother-daughter bond, do not look to Elena Ferrante's novels. This superb and scary...
In this brutally frank novel of maternal ambivalence, the narrator, a forty-seven-year-old divorcée summering alone on the Ionian coast, becomes obsessed with a beautiful young mother who seems...
International Ferrante Fever continues its conquest of Europe, this time moving northward to chilly Scandinavia. A longtime fixture on the Italian and Spanish bestseller lists, Elena Ferrante's first...

Latest reviews

  • [Ferrante's] "evocation of the devastating work conditions in a sausage factory where Lila labored recalls Zola; her examination of Nino Sarratore’s ambitious rise from the provinces to political prominence in Rome owes something to Balzac."
    — New York Review of Books, May 26 2016
  • The only flaw in this fourth installment of Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels is that it brings the series to a close. Like its predecessors, Child focuses on the lifelong, rivalrous friendship between two girls born poor in Naples who alter their stations in very different ways.
    — People Magazine, Dec 10 2015
  • Worth a mention twice on any “Best of 2015” list, Ferrante’s series chronicles the relationship of two childhood best friends, as their lives diverge and come together in adulthood.
    — Vanity Fair, Dec 10 2015
  • The vicious and brilliant Neapolitan series hurtles to its stormy end with this fourth novel, which sees Elena and Lila navigating the social and political upheavals of Italy in the 1960s and ’70s.
    — Slate, Dec 3 2015
  • March through October became a torrent of Elena Ferrante, when I wasn’t wringing my hands and hunching my shoulders over work.
    — The Millions, Dec 3 2015
  • Some mighty literary projects reached their conclusion in 2015. The Story of the Lost Child (Europa) is the fourth and final volume in Elena Ferrante’s series of Neapolitan novels...
    — The Guardian, Dec 3 2015
  • This four-volume narrative, with all its operatic overtones, is a tribute to feminism and female friendship in mid-20th-century Naples.
    — The Economist, Dec 3 2015
  • Like the three books that precede it in Ferrante’s Neapolitan quartet, this brilliant conclusion offers a clamorous, headlong exploration of female friendship set against a backdrop of poverty, ambition, violence and political struggle.
    — The New York Times, Dec 3 2015
  • One of the great pleasures of this year for me was the last volume of Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan tetralogy, The Story of the Lost Child. It’s not to be read on its own, though — you’ve got to devour the other three books first.
    — The Millions, Dec 2 2015
  • 2015 was also the year I caved in and read Elena Ferrante. Her novels had been recommended to me so many times — by so many people — I was sure they couldn’t possibly live up to the hype. But the first page of My Brilliant Friend sucked me in, just like everyone said it would.
    — The Millions, Dec 2 2015
  • The capper to Elena Ferrante’s beloved Neopolitan quartet, The Story of the Lost Child brings to a close the story of Lila and Elena, two young women growing up together in 1950s Naples.
    — Buzzfeed, Dec 2 2015
  • The Buddha said, "Life is suffering." Yet, most novels that women are raised on, as well as TV and movies and Facebook status updates, do not portray the reality of this situation and, in fact, fill young-lady heads with false ideas about how life is going to be...
    — The Willamette Week, Dec 2 2015
  • The final book in the Neapolitan Novels tetralogy that began with Elena Ferrante’s My Brilliant Friend, The Story of the Lost Child continues the saga of two compelling woman, Elena and Lila, childhood friends and now single mothers, back living in the neighbourhood of their humble origins.
    — Word by Word, Nov 30 2015
  • The fourth Neapolitan novel is featured on the Washington Post list of "Notable fiction books of 2015"
    — The Washington Post, Nov 18 2015
  • “I’ve been particularly influenced this year by the Elena Ferrante novels, the Neapolitan cycle. What I think is really fascinating about those novels is you’re highly aware as you’re reading them that you’re seeing the stories through the P.O.V. of Lenu...
    — New York Times, Nov 18 2015
  • "Ferrante has provided us with a portrait of the modern Italian soul, driven by desire and defeat, and worthy of the highest praise."
    — Wichita Eagle, Oct 21 2015
  • Four years after it was first published in the UK, My Brilliant Friend by Italian novelist Elena Ferrante broke into the UK Official Top 50 last week, and is currently celebrating its second week there (at number 50). It’s a sweet moment of success for publisher Europa...
    — Sep 28 2015
  • The Story of a New Name is the second book of the Neapolitan Novels. It’s raw and brilliant, with a light that shines unblinking on its characters Naples has always hung its washing to catch the air – it’s a city that knows its secrets … and so does Elena Ferrante.
    — Sep 28 2015
  • In My Brilliant Friend, the first novel in Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan series, a pubescent Elena Greco worries that she will lose her friend Lila, and finds that “that idea brought on a weary exhaustion.” Soon after, she gets her period for the first time. The juxtaposition—worry,...
    — Sep 28 2015
  • Nearly nothing is known about Italian author Elena Ferrante, except that she is Italian, female, and intensely talented. Despite having released nine novels to wide acclaim, she has refused to disclose her true identity or even reveal her face to the public, choosing instead...
    — Sep 22 2015

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