Saturday, July 5, 2014

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

by:  Donna Tartt
published by:  Little, Brown and Company
publish date:  October 22, 2013

It begins with a boy. Theo Decker, a thirteen-year-old New Yorker, miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by the family of a wealthy friend. Bewildered by his strange new home on Park Avenue, disturbed by schoolmates who don't know how to talk to him, and tormented above all by his unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

So I'm tardy to the party on this one.  Who hasn't read it?  Yeah, when I saw how long it was, I didn't want to read it...and usually when there's a ton of hype about a book and everyone loves it, I usually hate it.  I thought it was just ok.  I didn't see what was so absolutely wonderful about it.  I felt like it was a YA book instead of this great literary novel, then I read this article in Vogue about how all these literary critics are dismayed about the future of literature for the exact same reason.  Everyone loves The Goldfinch and is hailing as this great piece of literature when it is essentially a rather insignificant YA book, I was like thank you!  However, I digress...

For the most part, I found the story to be engaging.  I liked Theo and I wanted him to do well.  However, the book was SO long.  At times the author got so bogged down in the language and forgot about just telling the story.  Yes, it is important to be poetic in the way the story is told, but this was a really long book and it got frustrating and boring at times.  There were big chunks of the book that I didn't understand why they had to be told in such detail, like the bus ride from Las Vegas to New York.

In the end, my feelings are just kinda "eh" overall.  Will I be recommending it to anyone?  probably not.  Everyone has already heard of it.  I think I'm kinda mad at myself for once again getting suckered into the hype.  It always freakin happens.  Don't let me do it people!

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