In all the flurry about seeing movies this pre-Oscar season, I neglected to post about how much I loved – no, revered – Donna Tartt’s new novel, her first in 10 years. The hubbub surrounding “The Goldfinch”‘s publication, combined with its 800+-page length made me wary of diving in, but once I did I was hooked. I can’t even write about the novel because I’m afraid of sounding pedestrian when compared to Tartt’s gift with language; it’s gorgeous.
Suffice it to say, “The Goldfinch” is a mesmerizing, Dickensian, utterly enveloping tale, set over the course of many years, about a Manhattan boy who loses his mother in a violent tragedy, is orphaned, takes up with a cast of exquisitely interesting characters (especially a risk-taking Russian boy with a heart of gold) and nearly dies before deciding not to. The story is about love lost and never quite regained, about survival, about friendship, about art and its power to uplift and transform. I can’t rave about this book enough without sounding like I’m getting paid to do it. I only know I can’t wait for it to settle in my mind a bit more so I can dive back in and read it again.