Book Beginnings and Friday 56: My Brilliant Friend

My Brilliant Friend

by Elena Ferrante, Ann Goldstein (Translator)

Book Beginnings (a la Rose City Reader)

“This morning Rino telephoned. I thought he wanted money again and I was ready to say no. But that was not the reason for the phone call: his mother was gone.”

First Impression: Excellent. This book isn’t classified as a mystery so I know it’s a disappearance, not a murder, and that idea has always been appealing to me.

The Friday 56 is a weekly blog meme hosted by Freda’s Voice. Join in every Friday, the rules are simple.

Rules: *Grab a book, any book. *Turn to page 56 or 56% in your eReader.

*Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grab you.

*Post it. *Add your (url) post here in Linky. Add the post url, not your blog url. It’s that simple.

“Once only I seemed to see Tina and with a tug at my heart I bent over to grab her, but it was only a crumpled page of old newspaper. They aren’t here, Lila repeated, and headed toward the door. Then I felt lost, unable to stay there by myself and keep searching, unable to leave if I hadn’t found my doll.

At the top of the steps she said:

“Don Achille took them, he put them in his black bag.”

And at that very moment I heard him, Don Achille: he slithered, he shuffled among the indistinct shapes of things. Then I abandoned Tina to her fate, and ran away.”

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8 thoughts on “Book Beginnings and Friday 56: My Brilliant Friend

    1. True… I think she’s done a great job capturing the mindset of children, where whatever they imagine is true, so that scene- which is just about how they’ve lost their dolls is incredibly creepy. As the adult observer, I’m like, “Hey, she’s just a Barbie!” But part of my heart still aches for the girl- because those losses can be so BIG to a child (especially these children, who don’t have that much to begin with).

    1. I’m only about halfway through it- it’s not as fast a read as the other books I’ve been picking up lately- but I love it. It keeps adding unexpected perspectives as the story goes on and the characters grow.

    1. I haven’t finished this book, but I’m kind of in love with it- some of it is just a different writing style than is popular in America right now- the rambly sort of sentences make for a nice change of pace, and better capture how younger characters think. And she presents the children’s understanding of the world as unquestioned and definite, only poking holes in them as the characters start to age.

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