The Goldfinch

The Goldfinch

Book - 2013
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A young boy in New York City, Theo Decker, miraculously survives an accident that takes the life of his mother. Alone and abandoned by his father, Theo is taken in by a friend's family and struggles to make sense of his new life. In the years that follow, he becomes entranced by one of the few things that reminds him of his mother: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the art underworld. Composed with the skills of a master, The Goldfinch is a haunted odyssey through present-day America, and a drama of almost unbearable acuity and power. It is a story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention, and the enormous power of art.
Publisher: New York :, Little, Brown and Company,, 2013.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780316055437
Characteristics: 771 pages ; 25 cm


From Library Staff

Slow to build but worth the wait. This rich coming of age story will be released as a film on October 2019 with Nicole Kidman and Ansel Elgort

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Oct 21, 2018

The beginning, ending and a lot in the middle is a major snoozefest. The editor really dropped the ball on this one. The book is simply too long, for no reason, but hey it won a Pulitzer so what do I know. It took forever to finish and I was unsatisfied from the ending and generally disappointed that I wasted my time.

Sep 17, 2018

Three people recommended this book to me. I was extremely disappointed. The basic storyline was somewhat interesting, however it was about 200 pages too long. I don't mind reading lengthy books, but half of the words in this one added absolutely nothing to the story. There were so many passages that were redundant, unnecessary, and extremely boring. I kept reading with high hopes that it would get better. It didn't. Interestingly enough, AFTER I finished it and talked to various reader friends, I found no one else who liked it, other than the original three who recommended it. I definitely do not recommend this book.

Jun 03, 2018

Another bleak World War II story. Also a long book - over 750 pages.

May 30, 2018

I'll give it 3.5 stars instead of 2, but as srd66669 said below: "At first, I thought I had found an interesting book! Although it was over 800 pages, I was optimistic that time spent would be worthwhile. Midway through the story, I found myself becoming tired of the very long descriptive paragraphs...and ,worse, becoming a little bored. I believe Tartt would have produced a better book if she shortened it to 300 pages. The story is not worth the time spent."

I fully agree with this review in every way. I was SO INTO THIS BOOK AT FIRST. I flew through the first 300 pages in a matter of days. Then, it took weeks to get to today, the day I finished this novel. I found myself skimming over Boris' ramblings and all of the descriptive feelings of the "male" character, who definitely was clearly brought to life by the emotions of a female writer. I am honestly disappointed in the ending for the amount of time I put in. I am hoping the upcoming movie version of this book will be better. I wanted to read the book before the movie, so at least I accomplished that goal even if the book itself accomplished nothing....

Apr 10, 2018

I love this book. I could not put it down!

lcraigjones Oct 27, 2017

This is a great coming-of-age novel for adults. Yes, it is very long, and although I would read frantically through the slow parts in order to reach the next moment of action, I'm not sure I'd prefer it any shorter. I liked how long this book gave me to invest in the story and characters. I love Tartt's word usage and style. I also felt that the connection between the main character and his childhood friend was really well developed.

Oct 13, 2017

Tartt writes brilliantly at times in this novel, and she's clearly a genius. But she has a penchant for including all kinds of irrelevant details that fail to move the story along one iota. This book would have been better if she had left out every other sentence. I also must admit that I did not from page one buy that it was written by a male. Her voice is clearly a woman's. This novel is a worthwhile read, if you're not offended by drug use and violent crime, but I do not believe it rated a Pulitzer.

Oct 10, 2017

While Donna is a prolific word smith whose vocabulary is PhD level, I find this story a bit slow, long and tedious at times. And while the life of the affluent is interesting as are character names and back story, I can't honestly say this is one of the best books I've read. Compared to authors like Richard Russo or Jonathan Franzen, to name a couple, I'm not a fan. I enjoyed parts of it, but overall it's not my cup of tea, no milk, lemon.

Bunny_Watson716 Sep 25, 2017

I love Donna Tartt's writing and didn't mind that this book was long -I was completely engrossed from the first page forwards. Her first book "The Secret History" is one of my all-time favourites and this will be too. Highly recommended - I'm sorry it took me so long to finally get to read this.

ArapahoeKati Jun 28, 2017

You have to commit to this book--it's incredibly long. The story is good, the character development is strong, and you might find yourself discouraged about halfway through because you'll think the editor needed to break out the red pen more often.

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Apr 17, 2017

“When you feel homesick,’ he said, ‘just look up. Because the moon is the same wherever you go.”

Jun 16, 2015

“Caring too much for objects can destroy you. Only—if you care for a thing enough, it takes on a life of its own, doesn’t it? And isn’t the whole point of things—beautiful things—that they connect you to some larger beauty?”

KateyC Jun 26, 2014

Why does it cost so much, a thing like from kindergarten class? 'Ugly Blob.' 'Black Stick with Tangles." - Boris

Apr 13, 2014

That life -- whatever else it is – is short. That fate is cruel but maybe not random. That Nature (meaning Death) always wins but that doesn’t mean we have to bow and grovel to it. … It is a glory and a privilege to love what Death doesn’t touch (the Goldfinch painting). For if disaster and oblivion have followed this painting down through time – so too has love….

Jan 21, 2014

"A great sorrow, and one that I am only beginning to understand: we don’t get to choose our own hearts. We can’t make ourselves want what’s good for us or what’s good for other people. We don’t get to choose the people we are."

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Oct 23, 2014

Chapel_Hill_KenMc thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over


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siammarino Sep 22, 2014

Leo is in a museum in New York City when a terrorist sets off a bomb. Alive but stunned, Leo comforts a dying man who gives him a ring with instructions where to take it, and then he grabs a valuable painting of a goldfinch and makes his way out of the museum and home. His mother has died in the bombing, and his life from then on revolves around the painting, the girl Pippa who alerted him to the bomb, Pippa's uncle Hobie who takes in Teo and teaches him to restore antiques, and Boris who is just bad news. This is the story of the power of great artworks to grab you soul and not let go. It is also a powerful reminder of the plight of children who lose their parents, or whose parents don't care for them.


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