The Wonky Bookshelf

The Days of Abandonment – Elena Ferrante

elena ferrante's the days of abandonment book cover

The Days of Abandonment is so raw that it makes for a heartbreaking read that is both unsettling and uncomfortable.

From the beginning you are thrown into mind of a narrator who is circling the drain following her husband’s departure. Struggling to cope with her two children, and the dog, our abandoned wife starts to break down.

It’s such a brutal depiction of femininity, motherhood and what it’s like to lose yourself. It’s like a scalpel has scraped away the facade of marital bliss and left us with a woman scorned who becomes mentally unstable. Ferrante’s writing is amazing in parts, sloppy in some, and her interesting observations and frank descriptions offer an unapologetically brutal take on the female psyche.

It’s a book that will have an impact on any reader and whilst it is short, it is very heavy with uncomfortable content that it seems much longer. The first half is nothing short of amazing but Ferrante loses her way in the second half.

Nonetheless, this is a book that will stay with me for a long time purely for how human and haunting it is.