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Sarah's Library

I read pretty much anything, from fantasy (City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett) to romance (Bared to You by Sylvia Day) to classics (Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad).  The only genres I don't read are self-help and comic books/graphic novels.

Currently reading

The Last Honeytrap
Louise Lee
Progress: 100/346 pages
Complete Works of William Shakespeare
William Shakespeare

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

The Goldfinch - Donna Tartt

4/9 - I had trouble with the scenes during and after the bombing. I didn't feel like I could trust Theo's account of what happened, he's young and things were so jumbled I didn't really understand what was happening. I was confused by what happened when Theo said he saw his mother, but that only half of her was visible and the invisible part was the important part. What on earth does that mean? I'm probably taking it too literally, but my first thought was that he'd seen her headless body (therefore her head was the invisible part, and obviously the most important part) and been so traumatised by the sight that his mind had turned it into something else that he could deal with. Considering my distrust of what Theo said he was seeing, I wasn't sure what to think of what the old man was saying. I wasn't sure if the whole episode was imagined or if the old man was insane or if everything that was said should be taken at face value. Since the story moved on to the Barbour's apartment everything is making a lot more sense making reading it more enjoyable. Theo has just been invited inside Hobart and Blackwell, I'm quite eager to see what's going to happen next. If this was another type of book Hobart and Blackwell would be a sorcerer's store with things like eye of newt and dragon's blood on the shelves. But looking at the shelves it's been placed on I don't think that's what's going to happen. To be continued...

10/9 - Theo's constant inability to say what he wants to say and the frequency with which he lets others talk over him and push him in directions he doesn't want to go has become more than a little irritating. Every time he starts a sentence and can't finish it, either because someone interrupts him or he just can't finish his thought, I want to shake him and tell him to speak up. He's just allowed himself to be 'guided' into a cab with the suitcase he didn't really want to take with him to Vegas, all because he was unable to speak for himself and make Goldie understand that not only did he not want to take the suitcase with him, he also wasn't going to the airport till the next day. If he'd just spoken up he could have avoided a whole lot of stress at the airport security checkpoint, and possible future problems once he and his father arrive in Vegas (I'm imagining his father discovering the painting and attempting to sell it, possibly getting himself and Theo thrown in jail). To be continued...

25/10 - Finally finished!! This was such a long and meandering book. I never knew where the story might be going and it often felt like Tartt didn't know where it was going either. I have heard some writers say that they often don't know where the story is going to end up, that the characters themselves move the plot along to where they want it to go, that's kind of how I felt this book was created. Like Tartt wasn't in control of her own story, Theo and Pippa and Hobie and Andy and all the other characters were and Tartt was just in charge of the physical task of writing the words down. I found the ending a bit unsatisfying and purposefully vague. I'm not a fan of existential waffling and that's what the last eight pages mostly seemed to consist of, a whole lot of words, but none of them really saying anything of import. The main thing, the main idea I got from this book is that drugs are bad. So much of the chaos that invaded, and at some points ruined, Theo's life wouldn't have been there but for the drugs he took. Watching him continue to poison his mind and body was very frustrating, and just one more reason that made me want to shake him.

I think my feelings are more along the lines of 3.5 stars, but I'm feeling generous so I'm rounding up instead of down. I figure, although looking back it wasn't a standout book for me, that I wouldn't have been able to make myself keep reading for all those pages if I hadn't found something enjoyable about it. I would definitely pick up another of Tartt's books if I came across it at the library, but I don't know if I would make special effort to seek them out.


PopSugar 2015 Reading Challenge: A Pulitzer Prize Winning Book