This book got such rave reviews when it first came out, and while I can understand why, I personally didn’t love it that much. I thought it was a good book, and it has all the makings of a best seller, a tragic hero who gets himself involved in all sorts of criminal dealings, intrigue involving a stolen painting, and it’s long, very very long.
Don’t get me wrong, I am all for long books, the longer the better in some cases. But with the Goldfinch, it felt like it could have been at least 200 pages less. There’s a lot of unnecessary detail, which detracts from the main plot. At points I actually found myself forgetting the important details about Theo; his mother died, he stole a painting.
There’s also a lot of broken dialogue that made this difficult to get through at times. A lot of “yes um – “ “Oh-“ “But-“ and while I understand the purpose of it in terms of Theo’s character, it drove me crazy.
The book is far from being terrible though, and Donna Tartt is a great writer. She manages to give a lot of detail, but does not use flourishing or unnecessary language, and aside from the dialogue, everything flowed relatively well. I think that people unfamiliar with Donna Tartt will like this, but for those who have read her other novels, The Goldfinch will come as a huge disappointment.