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Synopsis

WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE

"The Goldfinch is a rarity that comes along perhaps half a dozen times per decade, a smartly written literary novel that connects with the heart as well as the mind....Donna Tartt has delivered an extraordinary work of fiction."--Stephen King, The New York Times Book Review

Theo Decker, a 13-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 longing for his mother, he clings to the one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

As an adult, Theo moves silkily between the drawing rooms of the rich and the dusty labyrinth of an antiques store where he works. He is alienated and in love--and at the center of a narrowing, ever more dangerous circle.

The Goldfinch is a mesmerizing, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the ruthless machinations of fate.

Book Reviews

The Goldfinch
Average rating
4 / 5
The Goldfinch
November 21st, 2015
A phenominal book, easily in the top three most favourte books of my life. Such a captivating story, I didn't want it to end. I wish there were another 800 pages of it. Fully deserving of the pretigious award it received.
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1 review
Strange
October 1st, 2015
After being highly disappointed by "The Litle Friend" I had great hope for this book but it seems that her great opus was "The Secret History"
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1 review
Grief and Despair
September 17th, 2015
I quickly became immersed in this ovewhelmingly sad novel. The feelings of grief evoked by the author were at times too real. Brilliantly written, masterful but the subject matter makes the novel difficult to read at times.
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1 review
A lesson in frustration
August 27th, 2015
I wanted to love this book, really. It was recommended to me by a friend who adored it, which was reason enough for me to want to give it a read. It took me 3 months to get through this book. 3 months! It's never taken me 3 months to do anything! The progression of the story made it very difficult to really sink my teeth into, so I found myself reading only small chunks at a time because I got bored, even though I was enjoying the story. I felt I had to press on, though, because my friend had loved it so. If it could have ended 3/4 of the way through, I think I could have forgiven the fact that the story could've been told more effectively in half the amount of words. But the last few chapters made me hate every single person involved in this book. I hated the characters. I hated the author for completely wasting the entire story that had been told with the most painful, preachy, annoying ending. I hated my friend for loving this book, and recommending it to me. I hated myself for wasting 3 months reading this book, which I walked away from without any sense of the joy or accomplishment that one should get from reading a good book, but instead with frustration and the need for a stiff drink. The first 3/4 of the book gets 3-3.5 stars. The ending gets 1. My annoyance is un-quantifiable.
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1 review
Hard to put in words
July 27th, 2015
This a sprawling buildingsroma. I liked the conceit but felt that for all of his talk, his confession that Theo gained no self insight and learned nothing. A true dickensian hero grows in wisdom. Some lovely prose. It makes you feel; what exactly i am not sure. Theo's etherized mind is contagious.
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1 review
Great story!
July 3rd, 2015
Intricate, wonderfully flawed characters coupled with a complex and unpredictable plot. Both sad and uplifting. This book explores life, art and the art 0f living.
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1 review
Of Human Painted Birds in Bondage
June 26th, 2015
This book is a commitment. Initially I thought this fairly straightforward story was well written, but not particularly "Pulitzer" worthy, but it grows on you. The themes aren't new, the story telling is simple, and the characters are essentially as they initially manifest. But the essay-like denouement that fill the final pages, on the genesis of art and consciousness make the book for me.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
June 21st, 2015
One of those books that you hate to put down and you can't wait to read the ending but that you don't to end. So well written and so interesting. The reason I did not give 5 stars was that it confusing at times but highly recommed it.
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1 review
Long and rambling
June 20th, 2015
St Found the author to be using the book as a platform foR her philosophy on life. Fine if done with sutilty. This was not
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1 review
The Goldfinch
June 17th, 2015
It started off great then flopped. Was very disappointed. Even the ending left you saying ...what? Very disappointed.
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1 review
Great read!
June 9th, 2015
Donna Tartt writes in such a way that you feel everything the way her characters do. An amazing book. Loved it from beginning to end.
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1 review
Goldfinch
April 12th, 2015
Story is excellent but some of the writing is far too long especially near the end. But a very good read overall
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1 review
Well written
March 17th, 2015
Suspense throughout the read and the life of the main character. I liked the literary style of the written words. Worth the 5 stars!
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1 review
Great read
March 13th, 2015
A winding path through heartbreak and irony. This book will make you think about all the things you need to do in life.
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1 review
Don't ask me how it ends.....
February 27th, 2015
I could not, despite great effort finish this book. Felt like when you're at a dinner party and the one eccentric guest goes on and on and on about a story that could have been explained in half the time.
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1 review
Fought my way through to the end
February 20th, 2015
Thought it would be great and fought my way through to the end. It touches on some ideas for thought at the end which I like, but nothing was definitive. A few excellent quotes when the ideas cleared but complete fog in the middle. I cared a little about the characters but not enough to feast on the novel. I wish the author had been more bold in her characters as well as circumstance, it would have focused the ideas which could have been grand.
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1 review
THE GOLDFINCH
January 8th, 2015
SUCH INTERESTING CHARACTERS SURVIVORS DESPITE THEIR BEST EFFORTS TO DESTROY THEMSELVES BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN
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1 review
Goldfinch
December 29th, 2014
I felt a continuous feeling of loss and despair that must be like the goldfinch. The author amassed me with her introspection into a young man.
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
Loved the writing style
December 23rd, 2014
This book was so wonderfully written the characters come alive within the pages. If I could have lived in the magic of the beginning of this book I would have. The writing continues to swallow you into its world, and although many readers will find the rest of the book incredibly entertaining, I'm not a big fan of reading thru heavy drug and alcohol abuse and found the ending to be a little long compared to the rest of the book.
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1 review
2 of 3 people found this helpful
A DOWNER
December 22nd, 2014
Good read for the most part but a nihilistic downer at the end. Dont understand why it merited a Pulitzer.
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1 review
Beauty and harshness of life.
December 14th, 2014
Complexity of the mind,this book stimulates the artist,psychologist,delinquant,romantic ,philosopher,rebel... In all of us... Wonderful,meaningful reading.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
December 4th, 2014
Donna Tartt paints pictures with words in an inimitable way. What a talent! I loved the characters. Some of them became friends and, by book's end, I was yearning to know what will happen to them in the future.This book is definitely on my list of favorites!
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
A Challenge
November 13th, 2014
Began with great hope and then becomes a tedious read. Far too many pages for explanations related to life's meaning rather than allowing the reader to come to his or her own insight.
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1 review
Deserving of the Pulitzer
November 12th, 2014
I'm a massive fan of Donna Tartt's work and waited for this book for a long time. It's absolutely deserving of all the accolades, and the writer is at the height of her powers. Beautiful writing, memorable characters, and twists that will shock you. Pretty much everything a reader can ask for.
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1 review
pure gold
November 12th, 2014
The story takes its time to unwind. It is a study of guilt and the heartbreak it wreaks but in the meantime you meet great characters and learn a heap about art, furniture, New York, Amsterdam and Vegas.
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1 review
NA
November 10th, 2014
Too much of the long winded details that don't always hold my interest.
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1 review
Until the third last drop!
November 10th, 2014
Lovely book. Could have done without the last two chapters
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
If you can make it to the end
November 7th, 2014
Maddenly long and convoluted many times. So heartbreaking I had to put it down a few times. But...but if you can make it to the end the last chapter is so profound it'll make you think about your whole life...the people you love, the people who've come and gone but most importantly about yourself...
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1 review
Unforgettable Characters and Gorgeous Prose
November 1st, 2014
The Goldfinch returns with Tartt’s signature combination of unforgettable characters and gorgeous prose. The story is told by Theo Decker, who as a young boy who steals the titular Goldfinch painting after he survives the bombing in the Metropolitan Museum of Art which kills his mother. For reasons he can’t explain, Theo doesn’t return the painting, but keeps it secretly with him through several moves across the country, new families, and ever-growing anxiety that he will be caught. The Goldfinch is a sort of Tell-Tale Heart story, with Theo slowly being driven mad by his act of theft – obsessively checking on the painting, compulsively tracking the news for hints that the authorities might be on to him, and gazing on it in a my-precious sort of way. As usual with Tartt’s male protagonists, Theo is a wonderfully deceptive narrator, and Tartt manages to surprise the reader again and again with her skillful plotting. With its beautiful writing and engaging story, The Goldfinch was my favourite book of 2013.
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1 review
A must read for the ages....
October 31st, 2014
In utter awe of this insanely never ending, maddening long novel that is so profound, so thought provoking, so worthy of its esteemed prized title. "....as we rise from the organic and sink back ignominiously into the organic, it is a glory and a privilege to love what Death doesn't touch." Donna Tartt, The Golfinch.
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1 review
Fun book, great characters!
October 30th, 2014
Truly an adventure from start to finish. The characters in this book are incredibly unique and well written. I can almost hear Boris' voice in my head. The story spans multiple decades of Theo's (the main character) life. Though lengthy, the story never dulls... it's quite a ride!
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1 review
A Masterpiece!
October 30th, 2014
Donna Tartt's writing style amazes me. I want to live inside it. This is the best book I've read in a very long time.
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1 review
Best book ever!
October 28th, 2014
This is the most enjoyable book I've read in a very long time. Truly an amazing work. I wish I could experience it again for the first time.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
October 24th, 2014
This is a book that truly makes you think about your whole life, where you have been, where you are going and how it all happened? It gives you a glimpse into the lives of others. I am thankful for having the opportunity to read it.
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1 review
A must read for the ages...
October 9th, 2014
In utter awe of this insanely, never ending, maddening long novel that is so profound, so thought provoking, so worthy of its esteemed title. "...as we rise from the organic and sink back ignominiously into the organic, it is a glory and a privilege to love what Death doesn't touch." Donna Tartt, The Goldfinch
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1 review
The goldfinch
October 3rd, 2014
Extremely we'll written. Very good read.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
September 21st, 2014
Although an intriguing plot and vivid characterizations, this story is rather drawn out and convoluted. I became quite sickened by the behaviour of the two fellows and their drug and alcohol escapades. I was one of very few who completed it as a book club read and I definitely did not recommend it to anyone else.
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1 review
Mrs.
September 18th, 2014
Very slow moving, not enough depth of characters, especially the main character, Theo. It felt too cold and emotionless so I didn't feel invested in the story at all.
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1 review
The goldfinch
September 5th, 2014
Beginning had promise..the plot got good if not better half way thru...but wow..did it go down hill after he returned from Europe! All over the place! He rushed..added too much filler in end...and didn't end the book well! Too much emphasis on drugs..and Boris had crap dialogue at times.....disappointed in the read.. But did finish it
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1 review
The Goldfinch
August 31st, 2014
The Goldfinch begins as a fast-paced, intense read, losing interest and regaining entertainment as it moves along, but sadly falls off track within the final chapter. It's almost as if the last couple pages were pulled from a completely separate novel or were written by another person who hadn't read the rest of the book. I almost would have preferred it to end a chapter early.
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2 reviews
The Goldfinch
August 31st, 2014
The Goldfinch begins as a fast-paced, intense read, losing interest and regaining entertainment as it moves along, but sadly falls off track within the final chapter. It's almost as if the last couple pages were pulled from a completely separate novel or were written by another person who hadn't read the rest of the book. I almost would have preferred it to end a chapter early.
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2 reviews
Goldfinch
August 20th, 2014
Very long-- but worth the read
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1 review
August 19th, 2014
The Goldfinch is one of the best novels I have read in a long time. Donna Tartt's exquisite writing, suspenseful plot twists, and three dimensional characters make it difficult to put down. One immediately identifies with the main character, a young adolescent who loses his mother in a violent explosion. As he goes through shock, PTSD, and depression, he eventually finds himself in this coming-of-age Bildunsroman.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
August 11th, 2014
Not as good as all the raves it received........but still......good and very different!
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1 review
Extraordinary.
August 10th, 2014
I enjoyed every rich word of this book. A tapestry of detail.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
August 7th, 2014
Heart breaking and devastating but a look into a very different personality.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
August 4th, 2014
A book worth reading. Long and maddening at times, but beautiful and insightful. Boris, Hobie, Pippa, Andy, Theo and everyone else are people you come to know and love despite themselves, because if themselves.
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1 review
Amazing!
July 28th, 2014
I loved this book, read it while on vacation and couldn't put it down! A captivating story about a young boy devastated by the horrific death of his mother in a current day terrorist attack on a New York Museum and his struggle to survive and grow up in the raw and gritty world he finds himself in afterwards. The masterpiece painting of a Goldfinch that he grabs onto like a lifeboat as he digs his way out of the rubble of the collapsed Museum and keeps secret in his possession for a large part of his life provides a glimmer of goodness and beauty that sustains him and guides him throughout his life journey to self understanding.
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1 review
Excellent
July 28th, 2014
Excellent read. Highly recommend
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1 review
The goldfinch
July 7th, 2014
This author does not know when enough is enough. This book needed to end about 200 pages earlier.
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1 review
Hard to put down
July 6th, 2014
A long but thought provoking read.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
July 5th, 2014
Enjoyed tremendously. Would love to see the painting?
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1 review
The Goldfinch
June 28th, 2014
I love a book that has many layers. This is a tragic book. Each of the main characters suffer or have suffered in their young lives. The main story hinges on a tragedy and a mistake which affects the rest of a young boys life. This book is about love, suffering, coincidence, addiction, and friendship. It is also about the meaning of life and the relationship of suffering in our lives to the meaning of our lives.
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1 review
Book club selection for May 2014
June 27th, 2014
This was an interesting book with a fine art connection. I feel the story could be told in less depth. A very long read.
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1 review
Page turner
June 22nd, 2014
Loved this book. Couldn't put it down. Didn't want it to end. More twists and turns than you could imagine.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
June 19th, 2014
I'm sure there is little that I can add that has not already been said about this brilliant book other than it deserves more than 5 stars. It's the kind of book that a writer such as I (of light commercial fiction) reads and fears ever writing again because one's limitations become so clearly evident. Despite the reality check, it's a book that would have left my life incomplete had I not read it. Magnificent on too many levels to mention.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
June 19th, 2014
If you took the first 50 pages and the last 50 pages only, you would have a masterpiece. As it is, the middle is a bit ho-hum and I found myself skimming - not a good sign.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
June 16th, 2014
Beautifully researched and well written. Loved reading the book and sad when it ended. I could have kept going.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
June 13th, 2014
Very depressing a long winded.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
May 30th, 2014
Incredible book. Immersed in the life of Theo from beginning to end.
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1 review
Tour de Force!
May 29th, 2014
Very original story that touches the "human condition" from a unique perspective. Very difficult to put down.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
May 26th, 2014
The Goldfinch suffers from unnecessary length, losing the fundamental message and intent of the author ( summed up in the final few pages of the book). I could not put the book down the first 400 pages or so and highly recommended the book to my fellow book club members.......too soon. The story begins to wander and although my interest was reignited very 100 pages or so, I was waiting for it to be over! The final insights are instructive but not sure I cared too much by that time.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
May 26th, 2014
One of the best books I have ever read! A classic!
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1 review
The Goldfinch
May 19th, 2014
Among the best books I have ever read! Amazing and incredibly compelling.
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1 review
Words cannot express..
May 14th, 2014
I am so glad that The Goldfinch won the Pulitzer Prize! I cared so much for this book that I sometimes would take a short break just to make it last longer, which was difficult to do. I saw this story visually as I read. As a former student of Victorian literature, I picked up on Victorian allusions throughout, which only made it even better. Charles Dickens would have liked it, too. The characters are so beautifully rendered, especially Boris. Why is this book so special? Because it appeals on such a personal level. I don't think I'll ever find another story that can even touch its appeal.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
May 11th, 2014
I loved this book tremendously!! At times it seemed a bit long winded, but so often had things to say that were so profoundly thought provoking! I never read a book twice, but, this one I most definitely will! :-)
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1 review
The Gold Finch
April 21st, 2014
Les longueurs sont inexcusables, mais on poursuit la lecture parce des pensées de grande profondeur s'y révèlent. Ici, pas question d'économie de mots. Par contre de nombreuses pistes de réflexions sur le deuil, la solitude, la vie, la mort. Mais mieux encore, sur l'art et le baume qu'il applique sur la misère de vivre.
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1 review
The gpoldfinch written by zDonna Tar
April 19th, 2014
Very intriguing novel /Donna knows her material / art/drugs/gtravel /young men/russian/story tellinf/ I felt I was reading about a family I cared about. Peter
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1 review
Worth reading
March 21st, 2014
Lovely prose. Engaging plot.
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1 review
Tragic, yet hopeful.
March 20th, 2014
Most enjoyable for those of us who love paintings and the frequent use of the comma in descriptions.
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1 review
the goldfinch
March 8th, 2014
A fantastic read! Part who-done-it , which holds your attention like nothing I have read for ages but some pertinent insights into the value of art and beauty that is passed down over time as well as interesting comments about our judgemental tendencies.
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1 review
Not for me
March 6th, 2014
I found this to be an interesting story but it could have been told more interestingly in fewer pages. I found it to be over written which caused me to lose interest at various points throughout the book.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
March 3rd, 2014
Beautifully written. So much detail I felt I was there, observing!
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1 review
February 26th, 2014
The goldfinch was definitely a page turner, and even tho' it was lengthy, I had no problem racing to the end. It was well written with in-depth character development. However, the ending seemed somewhat anti-climactic and kind of fizzled for me. I would still recommend it.
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1 review
February 22nd, 2014
This book was a wonderful journey through the lives of the three main characters. But at times it was very uncomfortable to bear with the decisions made by the characters and the consequences that followed. The ending was dramatic and very rewarding.
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1 review
The Goldfinch
February 14th, 2014
Best book ever!
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1 review
February 10th, 2014
This modern-day Dickensean immersed me with its astonishing power, prose, and brilliance from page one. This new classic is full of unforgettable characters, pitch-perfect dialogue and vivid descriptions. Goldfinch's themes are huge in scope: loss, trauma, longing, family, friendship, bullies, survival, love, drugs, philosophy and power. It is full of complicated characters - their situations and relationships are bleak yet loveliness shines through much as it does in the painting that is central to the novel. One of the best books of the year and truly a masterpiece.
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1 review
February 5th, 2014
This book was superbly written and I found myself rushing to the next page. The tragedy surrounding Theo's young life is palpable and heartbreaking. The mother's character is developed thorough the eyes of a young boy and she is immortalized by his love of her. The stolen painting is the thread that ties the novel together and is a constant reminder of the loss of Theo's mother.
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1 review
January 31st, 2014
Well developed characters and storyline. A very entertaining book.
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1 review
2 of 2 people found this helpful
January 28th, 2014
It seems that once an author reaches a certain level of illustriousness, they become untouchable - in the sense that the publisher doesn't dare assign an editor who will do much more than check comma usage in the manuscript. Donna Tartt writes about a novel a decade, and she seems to be in the "untouchable" category. Which is a shame, because with some substantive editing this would have been a wonderful book. The plot is intriguing and there are some wonderful characters, notably Hobie, Pippa, Boris and a delightful dog who glories in various nicknames. Our Hero, Theo, is a complex and interesting fellow, but.... There are really several books here. I've seen the term "Dickensian" used in more than one review (I didn't read them till I'd finished the book), but I don't really think it is, except in length and richness of detail. I loved the first New York section, especially the part that takes place in the museum, which is masterful and heart-breaking. Once we got to Las Vegas and the endless descriptions of casual drug use, I was chafing. Back in New York, things became interesting again. When Theo goes to Amsterdam, Tartt apparently thinks she's writing a thriller. I had no idea how she would manage to wrap up the book, and I quite liked the meditative ending. Whew! By my count, that makes five books with common characters, loosely strung together. There are many endless sentences that took several screens on my Kobo. Although this does create a certain sense of energy and motion, which I presume must have been the author's point, it also got severely on my nerves. (I'm a professional editor, among other things, and have trouble turning off that part of my brain.) Would I recommend The Goldfinch? Sort of. Most of it is a good read, and if you like to dive into thick novels you may well enjoy this one.
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1 review
January 28th, 2014
Beautifully written and very engaging, Donna Tartt shows rare talent. Her characters draw you in and her skill keeps you with them through some very dark times. An excellent story of the redemptive and destructive powers of great art.
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1 review
January 28th, 2014
Really enjoyed this book. Beautifully written and engaging. Very lyrical and hard to put down. The characters are complex, especially Theo, who suffers tragedy after tragedy followed by a descent into drugs and criminal behaviour. I found myself feeling torn between sadness and anger. And yet there seems to be a magical or fateful thread that runs through it all.
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1 review
January 27th, 2014
It was a good story however there were parts that rambled on and on which resulted in me having to skip a few pages in those parts. I love the detail and description that the author uses, however there is a point where it goes from being great to being a bit too much and repetitive. If some of that was removed, it would be a great book!.
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1 review
January 27th, 2014
I greatly enjoyed this book. I do like a long read that really lets you get to know the characters and become attached to them. This book definitely accomplished that. I cared about Theo and what life would bring him next although of course questioned his choices. I also thought the characters in Theo's life were vivid and well written and were multi-dimensional with many flaws, but also positive traits. The peek into the world of fine art was also extremely interesting and accessible. It made we want to seek out my own "Goldfinch". The ending made me feel I could understand why we all make different choices in life and I hated to not continue to follow Theo in through life.
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1 review
January 27th, 2014
Fantastic read ...extraordinary story about the life of a young boy who survives against the odds, a totally thrilling tale!
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1 review
January 26th, 2014
I love this book, didn't want it to end, and have since given it to several friends. Like her previous novel "The Secret History" which I devoured 20 years ago, this one captures youth, what it's like to be young, so beautifully. A meditation on loss, friendship, family, and the meaning of art.
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1 review
January 26th, 2014
There are so many conflicting things I felt when reading this book. At the beginning, I really enjoyed it due to the writing. It was beautifully done with so much description. I would read a section and get lost in it. Unfortunately what happened is I would put the book down and realize while I enjoyed reading it, the story really didn't progress during that time. For a book that is just shy of 800 pages there really wasn't a story with as many twists and turns to match the length. While the characters were of interest the story could have been written in half the length and still be a beautiful read.
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1 review
January 26th, 2014
The storyline itself I really enjoyed. However the writing needs some serious editing, in my opinion, especially the boys' time spent in Las Vegas. I thought that section was very long and drawn out. The descriptions of the drugged and drunken stupors throughout the book became repetitive and tedious. However the premise of the story was strong enough to hold my interest, despite the length of the book. I would have given it 4 stars, but for the weightiness of the writing itself.
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1 review
January 26th, 2014
I recently read this book for a book club and out of the six of us, the opinions ranged from hated it to loved it with the majority being in the middle with really liking it. The story itself is intriguing and has a wide range of characters who you will love or hate as we follow the many tragedies following Theo Decker from childhood to adulthood. It is quite lengthy at almost 800 pages but you want to know what happens to this poor boy. However, someone could have done a better job editing this novel, as many parts just drag on and on to the point of so much boredom you might just want to give up and stop reading. But don't.
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
I love Tartt's novels and this one lived up to her usual standard. It is an epic life story that only takes place during part of a life but still has the same scope, drama and warmth. Tartt connects us with a character that should be thoroughly unlikeable but instead we witness his story with empathy and heart. It is suspenseful and engaging throughout.
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
Fascinaticating book. I loved it.
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1 review
January 25th, 2014
We picked this book for one of our bookclub reads this year, our group has been meeting for over 12 years and we really enjoy well-written fiction that includes the art world in some way, whether it's Artemisia Gentileschi or Vermeer, now Carel. Fabulous.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
A fantastic journey of a young boy,who's life was scarred by a tragic event and how that event continuously influences his entire life - cleverly written, it's a page turning book that grabs your emotions and takes them on a roller coaster with the main character. The author's play of words and writing skills makes you feel as you are experiencing the story yourself.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
Loved this book. It is complex without being confusing with great multiple-dimensional characters
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
I just finished The Goldfinch and I am feeling the "let-down" that comes when a great book is over too soon. The long, rather convoluted storyline keeps the reader guessing. The larger-than-life characters become people that one cares about. And the art/history/theft theme is fascinating. Highly recommended.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
This is a gripping and awe inspiring novel The use Of Tartt's descriptive language places you right in the scene Emotive and heart wrenching -Not for the faint hearted it can be rather tumultuous at times but paints a picture not often seen of teenage life
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
I found Goldfinch to be a cleverly written tale. As an artist, I could relate to Theo's emotional connection to the painting. However, I would have preferred more of a focus on the "underworld of art" storyline, rather than Theo's personal foibles.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
If the manuscript of The Goldfinch had been submitted to publishers by an unknown writer, I doubt it would ever have seen the light of day. While Theo Decker's story is in some ways captivating, mostly it reads like an embarrassingly verbose check-list of modern-day Hollywood-style misadventures and issues - all happening to the same unremarkable person. Terrorist bombing, early death of parents (one at the hands of the terrorists, the other alcohol-related), unrequited love, drug and alcohol abuse, fraud and counterfeiting, mental illness, homelessness, art theft, existential angst ... the list goes on. But my frustration at wading through page after page of self-indulgent description and dialogue pales into insignificance in light of the jarringly unconvincing use of first person narrator: the drug- and alcolhol-addled, still-traumatised Theo recalling in cringe-worthy detail events, impressions and even lengthy conversations that he experienced years earlier. I battled a sense of inauthenticity for more than 700 pages before arriving at the tacked-on explanation of how this was possible (his notebooks - not once mentioned along the way) - presumably Tartt's reluctant nod to the advice of a profoundly frustrated editor who must surely have been aware of the fatal authorial flaw. Why did I read to the end then? Because a friend gave me the book as a gift.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
I truly find it hard to understand why this book is so popular. It is too long, repetitious, and left me thinking, "Why didn't put this down when I first thought I should?" No redeeming qualities I could find, except for the kind man who raised him.
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1 review
January 24th, 2014
I could not wait each night to dabble back into the travels of this book. Donna Tartt's descriptive and enticing writing of Theo's life was totally captivating. A great read, you will enjoy it and oh I so want to see this painting of the Goldfinch.
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1 review

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