Top positive review
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A love/hate read.
on June 13, 2014
A book club selection, this book was one of my first kindle purchases, a good decision since the book is so long. Reviews that reveal too much of a story's plot frustrate me, so I'm glad I read the book before I read reviews.
The first pages of The Goldfinch drew me in so completely that I read for hours. Donna Tartt is a masterful writer. Her knowledge of languages, art and artists, cultures of varous countries and cities is impressive, as is her descriptive passages of her characters' drug use.
The bombing of the art museum stunned me. Although Dekker told us in the first pages that his mother had died in the horrendous explosion, I kept hoping with him that she might have survived. But therein lies the story. His journey from that moment, through all the changes, relocations, drug usage that should have killed him, all the while trying to protect that tiny piece of art, kept me up nights, reading just a bit more, then a bit more.
As satisfying as the story is, I sometimes grew weary of pages-long paragraphs. I kept thinking that I needed to breathe, to catch my breath somewhere. For me, it would have been easier to read if they had been broken down to half a page or so. Nit-picking, perhaps, for I was compelled to keep reading.
Two-thirds of the way through, I began to skip over the long drug-use descriptions and Dekker's pining for the red-haired girl. I wanted to "get on with it," to discover what was going to happen to the "Goldfinch," who would get it and how.
The revelation was both maddening and hilarious, one of those classic "duh" moments, as well as one of the most satisfying. I kept thinking, "Why didn't they just do that in the first place!" Ah, but youth is not that smart or clever. Ms. Tarrt is. The ending, itself, deserves a five star; but the passageway there gets a four star from me.
I will read more of Donna Tarrt's works. She is a skilled, memorable writer.