A wonderful, powerful, and dark coming-of-age story. If, like me, you had trouble with the Neapolitan novels and who knows why-- maybe the pinky/lavender book art or egregious mismarketing of Ferrante as an author of "chick lit"-- try her standalone novels, beginning with Days of Abandonment. Like Days of Abandonment, The Lying Life of Adults is an ugly book, obsessed with its own ugliness, interested in the voluntary abasement/nihilism of teenage girls. To her childhood friend, Giovanna spits: "Only b****es like you study like parrots, get promoted, and are respected by their boyfriends. I don't study, I get flunked, and I'm a whore." Wow! And still Giovanna is vulnerable enough to be made and unmade in the eyes of others, specifically the men around her. I love too, that this book has neither a happy nor unhappy ending, I feel like bad girls are always doomed in fiction and these kinds of books are most often narrated from the perspective of their introverted friend. Powerful move to give the first person back to the flunkies! Loved it, recommend it for Ferrante fans and anyone on the fence.

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