Goldfinch (Tartt) - Book Reviews

Book Reviews
[D]azzling.... Ms. Tartt has made Fabritius’s [goldfinch] the MacGuffin at the center of her glorious, Dickensian novel, a novel that pulls together all her remarkable storytelling talents into a rapturous, symphonic whole and reminds the reader of the immersive, stay-up-all-night pleasures of reading.... It’s a work that shows us how many emotional octaves Ms. Tartt can now reach, how seamlessly she can combine the immediate and tactile with more wide-angled concerns—how she can tackle the sort of big, philosophical questions addressed by the Russian masters even as she’s giving us a palpable sense, say, of what it’s like to be perilously high on medical-grade painkillers, or a lesson in distinguishing real antiques from fakes.
Michiko Kakutani - New York Times


[A] rarity that comes along perhaps half a dozen times per decade, a smartly written literary novel that connects with the heart as well as the mind.... The Goldfinch is a triumph with a brave theme running through it: art may addict, but art also saves us from “the ungainly sadness of creatures pushing and struggling to live.” Donna Tartt has delivered an extraordinary work of fiction.
Stephen King - New York Times Book Review


[A]n explosion at the Metropolitan Museum...kills narrator Theo Decker’s beloved mother and results in his unlikely possession of a Dutch masterwork called The Goldfinch. Shootouts...play parts in the ensuing life of the painting in Theo’s care.... Some sentences are clunky ...metaphors are repetitive..., and plot points are overly coincidental (as if inspired by TV), but there’s a bewitching urgency to the narration.... Theo is magnetic, perhaps because of his well-meaning criminality. The Goldfinch is a pleasure to read; with more economy to the brushstrokes, it might have been great.
Publishers Weekly


In Tartt's much-anticipated latest, following 1992's The Secret History and 2002's The Little Friend, young Theo survives an accident that kills his mother. Abandoned by his father, he lives with a friend's family in New York, where his obsession with a small painting that reminds him of his mother leads him to the art underworld.
Library Journal


(Starred review.) Drenched in sensory detail, infused with Theo's churning thoughts and feelings, sparked by nimble dialogue, and propelled by escalating cosmic angst and thriller action, Tartt's trenchant, defiant, engrossing, and rocketing novel conducts a grand inquiry into the mystery and sorrow of survival, beauty and obsession, and the promise of art.
Booklist


(Starred review.) A long-awaited, elegant meditation on love, memory and the haunting power of art.... Theodore Decker who is forced to grapple with the world alone after his mother...[is killed]. Tartt's narrative is in essence an extended footnote to that horror, with his mother becoming ever more alive in memory even as the time recedes.... The symbolic echoes Tartt employs are occasionally heavy-handed, and [plot points] a little too neat... Yet it all works.... The novel is slow to build but eloquent and assured, with memorable characters.... A standout--and well worth the wait.
Kirkus Reviews




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