Love Will Tear You Apart-Giula Ottaviano
novel in translation
The house is floodlit; the crystal glasses are ready; the waiters and maids are lined up. A delicate Chanel dress lies on the bed. Eugenia De Gasperis is late for her father’s birthday party, and she knows full well that a celebration for a prominent Milanese entrepreneur such as her father will be no ordinary occasion. She enters the house in a hurry, and then she stops, taken aback: The drawing room is empty. The news came a few days ago: The De Gasperis company’s huge building site has been seized, and Paolo, Eugenia’s father, has been charged with serious offenses. Lucy, his wife, is devastated: She can already see their assets confiscated, their family ruined.
At first, I was worried this would be a story of a whiny rich princess with a star-crossed lover plot. Thankfully, my trepidation was unwarranted. Eugenia is indeed a bit spoiled and aimless in that way that the rich have the privilege to be and luxury clothes brand names are indeed dropped left and right but she is also quintessentially a millenial. She's aimless in a way I identified with and I guess that made all the difference. There is of course, the love interest who is, stereotypically perhaps, a foreigner and someone from a vastly different class but Ottaviano steers clear of the easy plot lines trod before and instead sketches out a love affair whose uncertainty and style is acutely modern. In the end, Eugenia shows her strength and a sort of feminism.
On a completely unrelated topic-you can tell that the person responsible for the cover art had not read the book. Every character is described as having black curly hair yet the cover has straight haired sandy blondes.
Read for the European and in translation Challenges