The Sunday Times

Elena Ferrante Sunday TimesThe unknown great

Elena Ferrante is being acclaimed as a great novelist around the world — but nobody knows who she is, and she’s determined to keep it that way

by Louis Wise – Published: 8 March 2015


In 1991, Sandro and Sandra Ferri, who run a small independent publishing house in Rome, received a manuscript from a new writer. It was called Troubling Love, and it was indeed troubling: a visceral account of a woman’s love-hate relationship with her mother. Equally unsettling, though, was the letter that followed it. The writer, going by the name of Elena Ferrante, explained that she would not be identified. No interviews. No book signings. No pictures on the inside sleeve. Invisible as the author wished to seem, however, the letter was already cut through with a sure and fierce tone. “I’ve already done enough for this long story: I’ve written it,” it said. “If the book is worth something, it should be enough.”

Continue reading