If the prospect of entering another election year fills you with dread, Elena Ferrante just lined up a more palatable emotional blow. The author of the Neapolitan quartet will publish her first novel in five years, The Lying Life of Adults, on June 9, 2020, her English-language publisher, Europa Editions, announced.
Like the Neapolitan Novels, the new book will be translated by Ann Goldstein. Europa also previewed the first lines of the new novel, suggesting much of the action will take place in Naples.
Two years before leaving home my father said to my mother that I was very ugly. The sentence was uttered under his breath, in the apartment that my parents, newly married, had bought in Rione Alto, at the top of Via San Giacomo dei Capri. Everything—the spaces of Naples, the blue light of a very cold February, those words—remained fixed. But I slipped away, and am still slipping away, within these lines that are intended to give me a story, while in fact I am nothing, nothing of my own, nothing that has really begun or really been brought to completion: only a tangled knot, and nobody, not even the one who at this moment is writing, knows if it contains the right thread for a story or is merely a snarled confusion of suffering, without redemption.
I need to lie down.
The Lying Life of Adults is one of several Ferrante-adjacent works slated to premiere in the coming months. On November 19, Europa will publish Incidental Inventions, an illustrated collection of Ferrante’s 2018-2019 columns for the Guardian. HBO will also debut the second season of My Brilliant Friend, based on the Neapolitan Novels, in 2020. Ferrante’s 2008 novel The Lost Daughter, is currently in development as a movie directed by Maggie Gyllenhaal.
From ELLE US