Bracelet. Children learn to navigate the world by observing closely the adults in their lives. Giovanna, the protagonist of Elena Ferrante’s novel titled, The Lying Life of Adults, changes over the course of three hundred pages from a child to an adolescent to who she might observe as an adult. Ferrante draws readers into Giovanna’s life through dissection of close family and romantic relationships. We feel the intensity of Giovanna’s struggle to grow into herself. A bracelet worn at different times by multiple characters pulls the narrative together and provides key symbolism relating to the realities and the complications of adult life. Ferrante proves again that all of life can be revealed in a domestic story told well. The full cast of interesting and complex characters, their realistic dialogue and range of behavior kept me captivated from beginning to end.
Rating: Five-star (I love it)