Tuesday, March 18, 2014

New reads:

This week, I'm reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. I've heard a lot of hype over this, her newest novel. I had read some of her other works (see here) and liked them so I put it on my to-read list (along with just about every other book ever written) and promptly forgot about it -- I am deep in the throws of the Outlander series and didn't want to start another book in the middle of my time-traveling adventure. But as is sometimes the case when you belong to a book club, I had to take a hiatus from my personal reading to delve into the selection for this month's discussion. That selection is this book. Have you read it? At over 800 pages, it's quite a commitment but so far, I'm enjoying it. It's a lot faster of a read than I anticipated. 

As with her other novels, I enjoy the author's writing style. She does a very good job of drawing readers in. And I'm learning a lot about art, which is something I have come to appreciate since reading Steve Martin's An Object of Beauty (see here).

In case you're interested, here's the brief synopsis: 

"Composed with the skills of a master, The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America and a drama of enthralling force and acuity.

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 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 criminal underworld.

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

The Goldfinch is a novel of striking narrative energy and power. It combines unforgettably vivid characters, mesmerizing language, and breathtaking suspense, while plumbing with a philosopher's calm the deepest mysteries of love, identity, and art. It is a beautiful, 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."

I'm only about half way through but with all my other books in boxes, I'm not in any great hurry to finish it. Do you have any idea how hard it is to try to read a book slowly when it's grabbed your attention? Absolute torture. Perhaps I will just have to pay a visit to the library soon.

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