Title: The Goldfinch
Author: Donna Tartt
Genre: Literary Fiction
What’s it about? A thirteen-year-old boy survives an accident that kills his mother. To maintain a connection to her, he steals a priceless painting. But though the artwork is his tether to her, it’s also a constant source of guilt, one that grows like a cancer as he gets shuttled from a wealthy, New York family who took him in to the father who had previously abandoned him. His angst and suffering continue into adulthood and lead him into the seedy underbelly of the art world.
How did you hear about it? In the news shortly after it won the Pulitzer Prize in 2014, though I didn’t read it until recently for a book club.
Closing comments: I give the book two different star ratings: 5 stars for the writing and 3 stars for keeping me engaged, thereby awarding it 4 stars over all. In terms of the writing, the description was wonderfully vivid, filling my mind with images as well as words, and the weaving together of complex plot and thematic elements was beautifully done. On the other hand, the novel often dragged, with dense passages throughout its hefty 771 pages that made my mind wander. But overall it’s a worthwhile, thought-provoking read. Just plan ample time to finish it.
Contributor: Carrie Rubin
Carrie Rubin is a physician, public health advocate and writer. She is the author of two medical thrillers, Eating Bull and The Seneca Scourge. You can find Carrie on her blog, The Write Transition, where she chronicles her transition into the writing world, and on Twitter @carrie_rubin.
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