All things must come to an end, and so too does the Neapolitan novel series by Elena Ferrante with The Story of the Lost Child.
In middle-adulthood, Elena and Lina are brought together again in both proximity by living in Naples, as well as by circumstances within their lives. As Elena has embarked on having a life with Nino, with all the tumult that it entails with his relationships with other women, Lina is slowly changing the face of the neighborhood with her new computer business with Enzo. When Elena and Lina both find themselves pregnant at the same time, they are drawn further together, re-cementing their childhood friendship and dependence upon one another. During a time of political upheaval, a tragedy takes away Lina’s child and leaves her fate unknown, which drives Lina to begin to unravel, hoisting more rational responsibility upon Elena.
The conclusion to this series is as captivating as the previous three novels and pulls together aspects in a satisfying manner. While it may seem like the end was brought about in a slightly rushed manner makes sense when considering these novels as a somewhat autobiographical undertaking of Ferrante–some of the facts are yet to be known. Overall, the pacing of this novel is far quicker than its predecessors, but that might be because everything was already set up and readers now just have to witness the fall as events conclude.
Overall, I’d give it a 4 out of 5 stars.