Audie Award Winner, Solo Narration - Male, 2014
Audie Award Winner, Literary Fiction, 2014
The author of the classic best-sellers 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 13-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.
©2013 Donna Tartt (P)2013 Hachette Audio
Narrator David Pittu accepts the task of turning this immense volume into an excellent listening experience. Pittu portrays 13-year-old orphan Theo Decker with compassion, portraying his growing maturity in this story of grief and suspense…Pittu adds pathos to his depiction of the troubled Theo as he deals with addiction and finds himself in a dance with gangsters and the art world's darker dealers. (AudioFile)
"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." (New York Times)
"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)
I am not sure if the first part of the book was totally necessary to understand the end, because, I could not finish the book. I did like the description of the Dutch artists with the dead and decay themes to their work.
The story was an excellent description of the unformed prefrontal cortex of a teenager who can not make reasonable decisions in the mist of traumatic grief and PTSD. I got way to emotionally evolved in being the silent adult in his life and knew he would never listen to me. So I evaluated my emotional involvement and the depression I was experiencing and I had to stop the book. This was a fictional character after all.
Yes, good reader
Yup, for the bomb scene, but I bet they would spend a lot of time on the debauchary.
I know how the book ends and it is much different then I expected. I had many friends that said it was worth finishing and I still may, but I am too angry at this white male kid, raised with at least one loving parent that can't think himself out of a paper bag. Remember, when in doubt, lie to the adults!!
Yes. A grand story of a boy with a devastating loss, a horrific terrorist type event in NYC, a long journey, and finally coming to terms with the art, the antiques, the memories that help him make sense of life. Sad.
The Actor's work. I loved the writerly passages making me understand a scene, but mostly the thoughts and revelations of the main character at different times in his life. I think the dialog was well done, but I hate the "You Knows"
The deadbeat dad, Larry Decker's girlfriend and Boris, the Russian best friend. David did these voices perfectly. The woman's voice for Pippa and other feminine females were not quite right, but passable (e.i., a teen sounding like a man in drag)
The long writerly descriptive passages. I jotted down several on scraps of paper,
Yes, the length of the book and the ending, which I felt was a huge let down after so much action and drama.
I am sure that had I read the book rather than listening to it I would have put it down after the first 50 pages. The performance was so excellent, though, that I listened to the entire, long, dramatic, unbelievable thing only to find that the ending was a total let down.
Yes, it was fantastic.
This is a 200 page book in an 800 page book's body. It needs 4/5 of the descriptive (repetitive) sentences it contains. I actually found myself rolling my eyes every 10-15 minutes at overblown descriptions of mundane details in this book. It's like the author took writing lessons from Dickens. Unless you're getting paid by the word, more writing doesn't equal better writing.
Bland, OK, whatever. I didn't love his narration in The Marriage Plot and I didn't love it here either, although his eastern european accents were somewhat entertaining.
Please gods no.
The only likable character in this tedious novel is the Mother, and she dies in the first chapter. Don't worry, the reader knows this from the beginning. Unless you have 32 hours to waste, don't read this book. The story is not about the Goldfinch. It's a hook for what is simply a bad, distasteful story. The main character is a complete drip who can't get a word out of his mouth. It's the last time I read a book because it won a Pulitzer.
The Hare with Amber Eyes
I don't think it could have. The narrative is pathetic. Perhaps the Reader could have made it sound less so, but he didn't.
I would have cut half of the repetitive narrative and dumped the made-for-TV ending.
I think I've said enough. Several people I know raved about this book. Maybe I'm just old-fashioned. My feeling is that a story doesn't have to be laced with drug addicts, alcoholics, and filthy hotel rooms to be good; - only to sell books to a non-discriminating public. "The Fall of Edward Bernard" by W. Somerset Maugham is a good story.
I really enjoyed this book. It was suspenseful, touching, and kept my attention most of the time. I felt it was a bit too long -- some descriptions were longer than needed, and author sometimes repeated or dragged out some scenes. But overall, it was a very good book. The narrator was great -- did voices with Russian accents quite well.
What I love best about The Goldfinch is that it is really long. If you have a really tedious project like I did, stripping paint off of a ceiling, it is good to have a long story. If I had to actually read this book it would have been a great antidote for insomnia. Unlikeable characters, belabored plot lines, angst and withdrawal, self pity, waiting for something to actually happen. All wrapped up in a syrupy ending of redemption when you wish that the main character had just died in the explosion- no spoiler alert as the only interesting thing that happens is in the story description.
When it was finally over.
I would never have made it through this book. The only thing that got me through the audio book was chipping at paint.
For once, a movie that cannot possibly be worse than the book!
Pulitzer Prize? Seriously?
This book is a long listen at almost 32.5 hours. I found the first half to be exceedingly slow and uninteresting. Things do begin to pick up after Theo returns to NYC from Las Vegas,but I feel the story would have benefited from condensing
I had guessed the ending some time before it happened.
First listen. he did an OK job.
Would be Ok as a 2 hour movie. Condensing storyline would be a good move.
Not a favorite story.
I'm a producer with much less time to read for fun than I'd like. I'm new to audio books and love a good mystery thriller.
I wanted more growth in the characters. I wanted something good to happen. I wanted the journey to not be for nothing. No luck.
Main character goes from bad to worse to just plane pathetic.
The beginning is the best part.
Not a good one unless the ending is changed. The screenwriter could only improve this by cutting huge amounts of unnecessary debauchery, but in the end you just don't care what happens to any of these people. You just want it to end. The entire appeal of this book is in what you hope will happen and then it never does.
So... I have heard much of the controversy about this book (does it deserve the Pulitzer - is it brilliant?) ... A friend of mine loved it / my daughter, who's BS degree is in Art History, did not. I started into this substantially sized book with a skeptical eye (or ear as the case may be). I loved it! The story kept my busy brain - busy, entertained, engaged and invested in the outcome. I was secretly panicked that the ending would be a let down after enjoying the book. It was not. It didn't end with a big finish - just a nice thoughtful wind down that left me completely satisfied and not disappointed or wanting. The one drawback to listening to this book is that there were so many beautifully written lines, I would have loved to have read them with my eyes and marked up a book with favorite passages. However... While listening to the book - It did get me through cleaning out my garage and my basement. Priceless!
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