Book Report // The Goldfinch

Happy Monday! I hope everyone had a fabulous Easter weekend 🙂
Ours was pretty low-key, which was great. I’m actually a little behind on sharing some photos I’ve taken recently, but hopefully I’ll have time to get around to it soon. In the meantime, today I wanted to share a book review with y’all that’s been a long time coming.
I don’t even remember how long ago I started The Goldfinch, but it seems like ages ago now. I had heard fantastic things about the book, and the fact that the subject matter had to do with art intrigued me as I was an art history minor in college. I downloaded the book on my Kindle and knew it was a long one (almost 800 pages!) even though I didn’t have a giant tome to flip through, but was excited to dive in. At first, I had trouble getting into the story (but I feel like I have that problem with a lot of books) as a tragedy takes place right in the beginning and some of the subsequent scenes were a little confusing to read through (or they were to me at least). However, once I got engaged in the book, I found myself really enjoying it. Donna Tartt is an extremely skilled and very intelligent writer that includes so much vivid detail for the most mundane and ordinary scenes that it makes them really interesting and beautiful. The story itself is pretty depressing, but the character development is excellent and I found myself rooting for the story’s protagonist, Theo Decker, despite the somewhat rotten hand he’s been dealt. Another thing that I personally enjoyed about the story is that a lot of it takes place in New York; because this is a city I love and have visited many times, I could very clearly picture many of the scenes she was describing and it helped me feel that much more connected to the plot. I really liked the supporting characters of Borris, Hobie, and Mrs. Barbour, along with the way that Tartt writes so eloquently about the power of beautiful objects.
However, as time went on, I felt like this book really started to drag. Although Tartt is a beautiful writter, sometimes I felt like she’d try to put so much detail and these deeply profound sentences into every scene that I just wanted her to get to the point already. Granted, I was primarily reading this book before I’d fall asleep at night, but often I’d be too tired to read more than just a few pages and given the book’s length, it just felt like it took forever to finish. I had a feeling once I got into the book that it wasn’t going to be the type of story with a neat happy ending, and that ended up proving true. Although some of the main storyline did come to a resolution, I found myself wanting more detail on what became of some of the characters and their relationship with Theo. The fact that Donna Tartt was trying to write this epic novel with lots of depth and meaning was very apparent, and although I did enjoy it, sometimes I just felt like it was trying a little too hard. However, it is beautifully written and the characters are very memorable and I think it’s one I’ll likely be thinking about for awhile. If you like more classic, Dickensian-type literature and enjoy a longer novel, then I’d recommend reading The Goldfinch as it really is a great book (and it just won the Pulitzer Prize)! However, I just feel like it might not be everyone’s cup of tea, especially if you have a short attention span.
And speaking of books, earlier this month I shared my perfect pairing – enjoying a great book with Ghirardelli Intense Dark Chocolate! I just wanted to remind you all to be sure to check out my post and definitely click the link to find out more about perfect pairings and to upload your photo to the Ghirardelli site! Thanks friends 🙂


  1. April 21, 2014 / 11:07 am

    I felt the same way about this book. Very depressing, I had a hard time getting into it, then it seemed to get better, but started to drag again. I am disappointed to say I gave up and never finished it. I've learned my reading taste is more juvenile and I moved on to the divergent series.

  2. April 21, 2014 / 3:22 pm

    Good Review, I have found lately- that I am turned off by depressing books, movies, songs etc. I am leaning more towards uplifting, motivation stories. Good to know I should probably avoid this. Although, I do appreciate your review! I love book reviews!

  3. April 21, 2014 / 5:03 pm

    I have to admit..I didn't read this post. But only because I have this book sitting on my TBR pile and, once a book makes it there, I try not to read reviews! But, I'm glad to see other book reviews out there! I'll come back to this post once I read the book!

  4. April 21, 2014 / 7:12 pm

    I tried starting a book club in the Fall and we only met once. This is inspiring me to try again!

  5. April 21, 2014 / 7:29 pm

    Great review. I probably won't read the book myself- like Rachel, I avoid depressing stories with books and movies as I am looking to escape to something better! However, the details sound beautiful- maybe if it was shared in a book club where at least a group of people could have good food and chat as a result of the book might motivate me.

  6. April 21, 2014 / 10:43 pm

    I do love reading a good book set in a place I've been before (or even lived, as I lived in West Harlem for two years). It makes me feel more connected to the story, too.

  7. April 21, 2014 / 11:15 pm

    I'm glad you got through it. Sometimes I have what I call Reading ADD…lol. I just wrote a post about some of my favorite short stories. They are just enough to tide me over. : )

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