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Luminous prose and a plot that keeps you guessing set this spellbinding novel apart.
The story opens in Amsterdam with our narrator, Theo, remembering the past. Quickly it moves to teenage Theo, experiencing a day that began as an ordinary but upsetting day then quickly turned tragic. His mother was called to a conference at his school, missing a day’s work. Money is tight for the pair as Theo’s father has absconded. The day quickly darkens; the taxi they climb into for their journey to the school is vile, when they decide to walk the heavens open with a punishing rainstorm, and then they take shelter in the Metropolitan Museum with spectacular bad timing. These minor ordinary choices soon have life altering consequences.
From this explosive opening we follow Theo’s life as his circumstances and locations change. His father comes back into the picture spiriting Theo away from New York, to a soulless suburb in Las Vegas.
Throughout, at the heart of the story, is the painting, the Goldfinch, a very real painting that hangs safely in The Hague, and has not experienced the adventures it faces in Tarrt’s work of fiction. A cast of well-developed characters that would do Dickens proud people the novel. Intricately plotted and beautifully written, the Pulitzer judges chose well.
— Deon Stonehouse
A young New Yorker grieving his mother's death is pulled into a gritty underworld of art and wealth in this "extraordinary" and beloved Pulitzer Prize winner that "connects with the heart as well as the mind" (Stephen King, New York Times Book Review).
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 a longing for his mother, he clings to the one thing that reminds him of her: a small, mysteriously captivating painting that ultimately draws Theo into a wealthy and insular art community.
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 mesmerizing, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph, an old-fashioned story of loss and obsession, survival and self-invention. From the streets of New York to the dark corners of the art underworld, this "soaring masterpiece" examines the devastating impact of grief and the ruthless machinations of fate (Ron Charles, Washington Post).
About the Author
Donna Tartt is the author of The Goldfinch, which was awarded the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, as well as the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction. Her novels The Secret History and The Little Friend have been translated into 30 languages. She was born in Greenwood, Mississippi and is a graduate of Bennington College.
"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
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
is a book about art in all its forms, and right from the start we remember why we enjoy Donna Tartt so much: the humming plot and elegant prose; the living, breathing characters; the perfectly captured settings....Joy and sorrow exist in the same breath, and by the end The Goldfinch
hangs in our stolen heart."—Vanity Fair
"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 Reviews (starred review)
"It's a classic...If you haven't read it, read it. If you have, read it again."
—Andy Cohen, Today Show
"Where to begin? Simply put, I'm indescribably jealous of any reader picking up this masterpiece for the first time. And once they do, they will long remember the heartrending character of Theo Decker and his unthinkable journey."
—Sarah Jessica Parker for Goop
"A soaring masterpiece."
—Ron Charles, Washington Post