Sunday, December 08, 2013

2013 book 310

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch
I enjoyed Tartt's previous two books, but wouldn't call myself a die-hard fan or anything, and I wasn't in a rush to pick up this almost-800-page books, despite its appearance on most best-of-the-year lists. And it took me a couple of chapters to get into it--because, frankly, the plot is completely preposterous. But it was just so RIVETING! And an amazingly quick read for such a long book. Then, a little more than halfway through, it kind of turned into a novel about weak-willed rich New York assholes. Do people like that exist outside of novels? Frankly, I wish they wouldn't exist in novels either, because they're VERY tiresome.  And the protagonist . . . at first, he's impossibly sympathetic, but as he makes one horrible decision after another, you just want to shake him and scream, "GET YOUR LIFE TOGETHER, MAN!" Tartt does love her complicated and ineffectual protagonists! Despite the stellar writing, I honestly wasn't sure how Tartt was going to conclude this in a satisfying way--but she manages somehow. It is really annoying for a really long stretch, though. B+/A-.

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