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1 Beaverton Literature- A to Z

The Goldfinch

by

The Goldfinch Cover

ISBN13: 9780316055437
ISBN10: 0316055433
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
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Awards

2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

Staff Pick

Donna Tartt delivers a beautifully rendered story about a young boy whose life takes a striking turn when an art museum explosion presents him the opportunity to "rescue" a priceless painting that will always hauntingly remind him of his mother.
Recommended by Mark I., Powells.com

This book is perfect. My reading of it was more of an immersion. I loved Theo and Boris. I felt I was there with the characters and in their heads. I could not stop reading this book! It's one of the best books of the year.
Recommended by Adrienne, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

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Publisher Comments:

The author of the classic bestsellers The Secret History and The Little Friend returns with a brilliant, highly anticipated new novel.

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 unbearable longing for his mother, he clings to one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into the underworld of art.

As an adult, Theo moves silkily between the drawing rooms of the rich and the dusty labyrinth of an antiques store where he works. He is alienated and in love — and at the center of a narrowing, ever more dangerous circle.

The Goldfinch is a novel of shocking 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.

Review:

"Donna Tartt's latest novel clocks in at an unwieldy 784 pages. The story begins with an explosion at the Metropolitan Museum that kills narrator Theo Decker's beloved mother and results in his unlikely possession of a Dutch masterwork called The Goldfinch. Shootouts, gangsters, pillowcases, storage lockers, and the black market for art all play parts in the ensuing life of the painting in Theo's care. With the same flair for suspense that made The Secret History (1992) such a masterpiece, The Goldfinch features the pulp of a typical bildungsroman — Theo's dissolution into teenage delinquency and climb back out, his passionate friendship with the very funny Boris, his obsession with Pippa (a girl he first encounters minutes before the explosion) — but the painting is the novel's secret heart. Theo's fate hinges on the painting, and both take on depth as it steers Theo's life. Some sentences are clunky ('suddenly' and 'meanwhile' abound), metaphors are repetitive (Theo's mother is compared to birds three times in 10 pages), and plot points are overly coincidental (as if inspired by TV), but there's a bewitching urgency to the narration that's impossible to resist. 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. Agent: Amanda Urban, ICM." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Review:

"A long-awaited, elegant meditation on love, memory, and the haunting power of art....Eloquent and assured, with memorable characters....A standout — and well-worth the wait." Kirkus (Starred Review)

Review:

"Dazzling....[A] glorious, Dickensian novel, a novel that pulls together all Ms. Tartt's remarkable storytelling talents into a rapturous, symphonic whole and reminds the reader of the immersive, stay-up-all-night pleasures of reading." Michiko Kakutani, New York Times

Review:

"The Goldfinch is 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....Donna Tartt has delivered an extraordinary work of fiction." Stephen King, The New York Times Book Review

About the Author

Donna Tartt was born in Greenwood, Mississippi and is a graduate of Bennington College. She is the author of the novels The Secret History and The Little Friend, which have been translated into thirty languages.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 7 comments:

G Chappa, June 16, 2014 (view all comments by G Chappa)
To the Avid Reader, who has thought recently as I have, "when will I find a truly good book to read again?" The book that will change the way you think about certain things; a book that will stay with you long after you've finished it and possibly started another...is here. Don'T be intimidated by the sheer volume of this book, I promise that it's length and weight will become a calming balm, a weight to keep you in the here and now... Just like our main character Theo and his painting. This Novel is a not unlike a great work of art by a Master Painter in the Renaissance: Bold colors, a portrayal of realism which somehow seems more beautiful or perfect than real life... however realistic it seems, will make you feel more and more as though drifting through a dream. The prose is not too 'flowery', and yet far from dry... Tartt's writing is more like symbolic poetry than as an everyday writer of a typical novel. I am an AVID reader; and as so, can read up to 5 books in a week... However, this novel is so overwhelming beautiful and heart-wrenching that I'm at a loss to decide what to read next or just re-read it! The Goldfinch is one of the BEST books I've read in a Decade... Every time I see a book by a Russian author, an antique piece of wooden furniture, or Dutch paintings from the 1600's...I think of Theo, and therefore this book... Completely unforgettable!
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(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
writermala, May 15, 2014 (view all comments by writermala)
Theo Decker is on his way to school with his mother when they stop at a museum. What happens next is a life changing moment. Theo meets Welty and Pippa and loses his mother. He is afraid that one action of his could lead to his being accused of looting cultural artifacts. The Goldfinch is a continuous thread throughout the book - a thread which leads Theo to the underworld. But this book is more than just that. Philosophy comes from the most unexpected sources as when Boris says, "Maybe this is one instance where you can't boil down to pure good or pure bad..." "Maybe sometimes the wrong way is the right way." A little bit of everything in this book. I loved reading it.
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(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
NappyDSM, April 14, 2014 (view all comments by NappyDSM)
Hooray for the Pulitzer committee! Donna Tartt is without doubt one of the most gifted novelists of our era. Twenty years after the publication of her spellbinding, literary-cult-inspiring The Secret History, we finally have The Goldfinch as further proof of Ms. Tartt's incantatory prowess. Far from being a mere plot device, the "rescue" of a small 17th Century Dutch painting serves as a window into the world of its hero's loves and obsessions, his meditations on friendship, loyalty, and of the role of art in our lives. As you are pulled into its vivid whirlwind of suspense, try playing director and cast it as the blockbuster film it will certainly become this fall. From Pulitzer to Oscar in one breath-taking swoop - and the year's greatest read!
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(4 of 5 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 7 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780316055437
Author:
Tartt, Donna
Publisher:
Little Brown and Company
Author:
Tartt, Donna
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Publication Date:
20131031
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English

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The Goldfinch Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$21.00 In Stock
Product details pages Little Brown and Company - English 9780316055437 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Donna Tartt delivers a beautifully rendered story about a young boy whose life takes a striking turn when an art museum explosion presents him the opportunity to "rescue" a priceless painting that will always hauntingly remind him of his mother.

"Staff Pick" by ,

This book is perfect. My reading of it was more of an immersion. I loved Theo and Boris. I felt I was there with the characters and in their heads. I could not stop reading this book! It's one of the best books of the year.

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Donna Tartt's latest novel clocks in at an unwieldy 784 pages. The story begins with an explosion at the Metropolitan Museum that kills narrator Theo Decker's beloved mother and results in his unlikely possession of a Dutch masterwork called The Goldfinch. Shootouts, gangsters, pillowcases, storage lockers, and the black market for art all play parts in the ensuing life of the painting in Theo's care. With the same flair for suspense that made The Secret History (1992) such a masterpiece, The Goldfinch features the pulp of a typical bildungsroman — Theo's dissolution into teenage delinquency and climb back out, his passionate friendship with the very funny Boris, his obsession with Pippa (a girl he first encounters minutes before the explosion) — but the painting is the novel's secret heart. Theo's fate hinges on the painting, and both take on depth as it steers Theo's life. Some sentences are clunky ('suddenly' and 'meanwhile' abound), metaphors are repetitive (Theo's mother is compared to birds three times in 10 pages), and plot points are overly coincidental (as if inspired by TV), but there's a bewitching urgency to the narration that's impossible to resist. 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. Agent: Amanda Urban, ICM." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Review" by , "A long-awaited, elegant meditation on love, memory, and the haunting power of art....Eloquent and assured, with memorable characters....A standout — and well-worth the wait."
"Review" by , "Dazzling....[A] glorious, Dickensian novel, a novel that pulls together all Ms. Tartt's remarkable storytelling talents into a rapturous, symphonic whole and reminds the reader of the immersive, stay-up-all-night pleasures of reading."
"Review" by , "The Goldfinch is 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....Donna Tartt has delivered an extraordinary work of fiction."
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