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. 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.
The story begins in the 1950s, in a poor but vibrant neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples. Growing up on these tough streets the two girls learn to rely on each other ahead of anyone or anything else. As they grow, as their paths repeatedly diverge and converge, Elena and Lila remain best friends whose respective destinies are reflected and refracted in the other. They are likewise the embodiments of a nation undergoing momentous change. Through the lives of these two women, Ferrante tells the story of a neighborhood, a city, and a country as it is transformed in ways that, in turn, also transform the relationship between her protagonists, the unforgettable Elena and Lila.
Ferrante is the author of three previous works of critically acclaimed fiction: The Days of Abandonment, Troubling Love, and The Lost Daughter. With this novel, the first in a tetralogy, she proves herself to be one of Italy’s great storytellers. She has given her readers a masterfully plotted page-turner, abundant and generous in its narrative details and characterizations, that is also a stylish work of literary fiction destined to delight her many fans and win new readers to her fiction.
Someone Like Me centers on Graham Boyce, an FBI agent who is depressed. To lift his spirits, his psychiatrist suggest that he goes out and is social. He goes out, struggles to connect with others. He feels rejected. During that night, he leaves the restaurant for a walk to clear his head. He is being followed and realize with astonishment, that the man that follows him looks familiar to him or, more precisely, that man looks exactly like him. He feels threaten and fears for his life. Against his own best judgment, Boyce decides to follow his double through the night. What happens next is a wonderfully twisted reflection of personality and uniqueness? It is an amazing, brilliant thriller in this haunting tale of appearance versus reality. Greg Bolen described his objectives for the book: “I want to place the reader into the body of Graham Boyce with this book and to make the experience of the reader’s imagination, from beginning to end, an absolutely personal one.”