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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Goldfinch

Have you read any good books recently? My friend Megan just emailed me with a recommendation: "If you're looking for something great, pick up The Goldfinch. Best contemporary novel I've read in about a billion years. Don't be put off by the fact that it's 800 pages. You'll wish it were longer."

The Goldfinch is described as a "beautiful, stay-up-all-night and tell-all-your-friends triumph," and the New Yorker writes, "Like the rest of us, Donna Tartt ages; but her fiction is going the other way. Her new novel, 'The Goldfinch,' is a virtual baby: it clutches and releases the most fantastical toys. Its tone, language, and story belong to children’s literature."
I'm so intrigued! Sometimes I like starting books (and movies) without knowing anything, so I ordered it without looking up the plot synopsis. Have you read it? Thoughts? Any other books you'd recommend? I know you guys are big readers!

P.S. Five favorite novels, and subway reading.

(Cartoon by John O'Brien)

196 comments:

pancakesandpoodles said...

I LOVED The Goldfinch and 100% agree with your friend. I've recommend it to literally everyone in my life (even the lady at the library checking it out! I had to tell her how good it was). Fantastic, fantastic read.

-- Emma

Simply Mom said...

It's an incredible book!!!! Her other novel The Secret History is one of my all time favorites. Also just read the Luminaries which was completely engrossing.

Laura said...

Currently reading the last book in the "Giver" series by Lois Lowry. I read the Giver years ago as a teen, but as an adult I appreciate the series in a whole new way. I highly recommend for an easy yet engrossing read. I couldn't put them down!

Also recommended: anything by Adriana Trigiani, Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay, The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom, and Khaled Hosseini's wonderful books.

Alicia said...

Half the Sky is amazing and so empowering.

heelsforever said...

Heard some great reviews on this book. Am aiming to do the 25 book challenge this year and this is definite let going to be on my list! Would love it if you did a review?

Heels Forever

Jessica Paul said...

I'm about 200 pages into it right now, and I love it so far. It's brilliant and beautifully written, and I'm having trouble putting it down.

Right before reading this, I finished one of Tartt's earlier novels, The Secret History, which is also wonderful and well worth a read.

Jane said...

Thanks for the recommendation. I was looking for some new books to read. Recently finished reading Inferno by Dan Brown. It was a good read, very long but worth it.

Jesse said...

thanks for the recommendation! i've been dying for a book i could really sink my teeth into.

http://semiweeklyeats.blogspot.com/2014/01/fake-out-matzoh-ball-soup.html

Justine said...

I completely agree with your friend! I finished The Goldfinch a couple weeks ago and it is now my go-to recommendation for anyone who wants a new book! It was beautiful, intriguing, heartbreaking... everything a book should be in my opinion :) Enjoy!

trish said...

I read it in 24 hours. It is beautiful written and it is such a gripping story. And. Must for a newyorker !

Lana said...

I recently started reading Bram Stoker's "Dracula" bc I made a New Year's Resolution to read some classics. Of course I knew the story, but I had never read it for myself and I have to say: It's really, REALLY scary! My husband comes into bed at night and asks me all sorts of questions about it, too. We're both on the edge of our seats waiting to see what happens. LOL!

JENNIFER N said...

I just started and I'm hooked from the beginning!

Erin said...

I'm 550pgs in and disagree with the sentiment that it could be longer. No. It's beautifully written but she honestly writes to hear herself talk. There are 200pg chunks that don't drive the plot in any way. I'm going to finish it but I'm not as in love with it as I was at the beginning.

jenny said...

I've had my name on the list for this at the library forever. I just checked and my place in the queue is 141. Sigh. Maybe sometime this year I'll get it.

Brooke said...

Reading The Goldfinch now and LOVING it. Your friend is right.

Recently finished The Cuckoo's Calling, which got a lot of mixed reviews but I found it to be an intriguing and satisfying private detective mystery.

Shahrzad Boutique said...

A friend of mine just mentioned the same book. I will have to check it out.

Marine said...

I recently finished reading The Goldfinch and I must agree, it was quite a book. I didn't feel like I was reading 800 pages, because it flowed so wonderfully from one page to the next. Beautiful story, and I highly recommend it. It was a great book to end/start the year with.

Kristin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kristin said...

I'm in the middle of it now and it is so, so good. I'm just in awe of some of her language, sometimes I need to put the book down for a minute to really absorb a page.

Joanna Goddard said...

i'm so excited to get started! although it takes me soooooo long to read a book these days, i honestly think it might take me all year :)

Joanna Goddard said...

trish, no way! that's awesome.

liz said...

The Goldfinch is AMAZING! you will love it. i loved elizabeth gilbert's new one, too. a great read.

Wren Brock said...

Ooooh, I've been wanting to read this. I'm never afraid of a big book. In fact, I prefer them. I feel like you get to soak into the story a little longer. Of course, that feeling is dependent on the book being justified in its length and the author not dragging on for no reason for 700 pages, but I hear this is really good and so I'll take the word of your friend. :)

angharad said...

The Goldfinch is incredible - you should definitely read it. Donna Tartt is my hero! Somebody on here said she writes to hear herself talk, and maybe that's true in that her books are pretty lush and generous, not as trim as a lot of modern fiction... but she doesn't do the social media thing, hardly does any publicity - it's all about the writing, the craft, and that's why I adore her. Let us know how you get on, Jo, once you've read it!

Kaysie said...

I haven't read this, but it's on my Goodreads "to-read" shelf. I would recommend Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides and The Cider House Rules by John Irving. The first one is a book I buy used copies of so I can give them to people, that's how heavily I recommend it!

melanie said...

i've been on the waiting list for it FOREVER.. hopefully my turn will be soon. I'm reading Live by Night now.. fast passed prohibition mobster novel. I love it so far!

Casey Burkhart said...

Will have to read that next!! I just put down "Tell The Wolves I'm Home" by Carol Rifka Brunt. Highly recommend it. Such a beautiful tale of loss and growing up.

Barbara said...

I loved The Secret History, but didn't love The Goldfinch. I read it a couple of months ago.

Regarding big new books by famous authors, I preferred The Circle by Dave Eggers. He wrote A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius.

Casey Burkhart said...

I will have to pick this up next! I just finished "Tell The Wolves I'm Home," by Carol Rifka Brunt. It's a beautiful tale of loss and growing up. I HIGHLY recommend it!

Kate Harvey said...

I read it with my mom and we both loved it! It's like a Dickens novel, so rich and brilliant.

Rebekah Daphne said...

Currently obsessed with Willa Cather (Shadows on the Rock, Death Comes for the Archbishop) and Mark Helprin (A Soldier of the Great War, Memoir from Antproof Case). Ooh, and I just started getting into Cormac McCarthy-- the Border Trilogy is dark but amazing.

Kerikins said...

Seriously one of the best books I have ever read (and I'm a big reader!) I couldn't put it down and was upset it wasn't longer. I hope you enjoy it!

Emily said...

I love that you posted on this today! I am about 150 pages from the end and seriously considered calling in sick so that I could stay home and finish it! Lol. I didn't, so I know what I will be doing tonight...

You'll enjoy it I am sure. And 800 pages read surprisingly fast when the writing is of this calibre!

Natalie said...

I could not put The Goldfinch down. It is the best book I have read in a long, long time.

Alina said...

Recently read "How to be Good" and I LOVED it! Such a fun, touching, and unique story :)

Mai said...

Highly recommend Americanah. I'm looking forward to reading Goldfinch too!

Jackie said...

I just finished the book Afterwards by Rosamund Lipton. A mystery/thriller told from a unique perspective with a lot of focus on motherhood, love, and abuse. I strongly recommend it.

Sarah said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sarah said...

I'm reading Americanah at the moment. I've heard such great things and have loved Nigerian writing in the past, but also don't know anything about the plot. I like a good surprise.

Unknown said...

The Goldfinch is lots of fun to read. You are immersed in a world that feels so authentic, whether it's in good times or bad. There are situations about home, or desiring home; being good and being bad; and the sheer richness of visual pleasures that are wonderful. I liked it more than her first novel, which was also good.
I thought the end was a big hamfisted. It may not be quite in the league of A.S. Byatt (it reminds me of her work in some ways), but it is definitely worth reading. Another novel that would be a great choice for New Yorkers is Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin.
For something funny (and shorter) I just read a novel by Michael Malone called Foolscap. I'd never heard of it, it is jolly and takes swipes at academics and show biz folk.
Anything by Michael Chabon is a good bet too.
I love a big fat book!

Kat said...

A few friends of mine have also been recommending it, so its my next read. Just finished Night Film, which I was very very pleased with. Its a light read and the language is not "dense" but the plot gets you so hooked. Currently started the Luminaries, so we shall see how that goes.

Also someone else on here mentioned Middlesex and I have to agree that book is an absolute must read. I still find myself thinking about the depth of emotion I experienced while reading that years ago.

Trish Allan said...

Thank you for the recommendation. Your beautiful description has inspired me to pickup the book this weekend. Happy reading Everyone!

Unknown said...

Sorry, I meant to say a bit hamfisted.
But some people will like it because it ties things up.

Jody Bailey said...

I just started reading "The Goldfinch" last night! Glad to hear such rave reviews about it. This weekend I finished reading "The Signature of All Things" which I really enjoyed and would definitely recommend. Other recent favorites have been "The Girl You Left Behind" and "Where'd You Go, Bernadette?"

CB said...

I'm slap bang in the middle of The Goldfinch- it is such a galloping read-don't be put off by the length.

Unknown said...

Wait wait, one more: The Jewel in the Crown quartet is wonderful to read too.

Kaylee said...

Ahh! I'm excited to read "The Goldfinch" now! I bought it last month when Amazon was having one of their Flash Deals but haven't gotten around to reading it yet. I'm currently in the middle of "Me Before You" and "The Cuckoos Calling" so I'll have to wait until I finish those to start it... Thanks for sharing!

Charlotte Rigby said...

To be honest, the plot synopsis actually put me off reading the book, but Ive heard so many people say it is good I am now tempted to try it!

Izzy said...

Michael Chabon. Anything and everything by Michael Chabon. I am reading Goldfinch now- I enjoy it- but I can't wait to finish and start another Chabon novel.

Mary said...

This is up next on my nightstand! Actually wish I hadn't seen so much hype about it since I bought it a while back. Can it live up to the expectations? We will see...

I'm reading The Girl You Left Behind right now, by the same author as Me Before You (Sooooo good!). Also just finished The Lowland, which I really liked.

Izzy said...

Also, "A Constellation of Vital Phenomena" by Anthony Marra is stunning and heartbreaking. It is a must.

Julie said...

I picked it up because Tartt's book, The Secret History, might be my all-time favorite. So far it is great and I expect it to continue as such. Hope you enjoy!

Dana Sawyer said...

I received The Goldfinch as a Christmas gift and I cannot wait to read it! I read The Secret History also so I'm a big fan of Donna's! I'm so glad you featured it on your blog!

Dana S.

13bees said...

loving all the other recommendations in the comments and have a few new reserves now at our library. after The Goldfinch, I followed up with Swimming Studies by Leanne Shapton - totally different but also beautifully written and you don't have to be a swimmer to enjoy. xx

thedirtyknitter said...

This book is sitting on my nightstand waiting for me to crack it open. I've been a fan of Donna Tartt's writing for 20 years since I first read The Secret History, so I don't think I'll be disappointed.

Amanda said...

Well, it's on the NY Times bestseller list, so that's always a good sign. Now that I hear what your friend is saying and I'm interested in reading it. I still want to read Gone Girl and The Fault in Our Stars.

The Book Thief is amazing.

marie bourlet said...

The french transaction realesed two weeks ago ans i'm reading et Wright nos.

marie bourlet said...

The french transaction realesed two weeks ago ans i'm reading et Wright nos.

Karin said...

Donna Tartt's first book - Secret History is my all time favourite book ever! You MUST read it!! I re-read it every year. I'm going to read this one on my spring break vacation in April. Can't wait.

Jane Doe said...

I haven't read it, but it sounds good. Wondering if I'll have time to read 800 pages with a toddler running into everything in the house?...

For a shorter read, I really enjoyed 7 Years in Tibet (better than the movie).

http://www.lifeplus1.me

Margaret said...

This is the second rave for this book I've heard in as many days; time to pick it up! I absolutely loved Tartt's book "The Secret History," though I wasn't as crazy about her follow-up, "The Little Friend"... I'm so excited to hear the great reviews for this one!

I just finished "The Rules of Civility," about young social climbers in 1930s New York; it was a great way to pass a long layover in the airport.

Sheila said...

I had the same experience as Erin, 200 page segments could be eliminated. No plot or character advancement. I thought maybe it was in need of a better editor.

Lotta said...

Donna's writing style is so beautiful and captivating. Cannot wait until I have this book! The Secret History is one of my top favorites. Couldn't stop thinking about it.

xo

Ange said...

I've been wanting to read this but it is hard for me to start an 800 page book... Such a commitment!

www.frockthisvintage.com

Jo said...

I scanned the comments to see if anyone else had mentioned it, and I would recommend Life After Life by Kate Atkinson.
It's one of those books that I read without finding out too much about it in advance and I could not put it down. I really loved getting lost in the world of the story and really liked the the development of the characters and how they related to each other.

Annie said...

The goldfinch is on my list! I am enjoying the Book Thief very much.

Emilia McGuckin said...

This sounds so interesting! I love that it's described as belonging to children's literature. Must read!

EMiliaMcG.blogspot.com

Two Cent Sparrow said...

I am halfway through The Goldfinch and LOVING it. Definitely worth the commitment. I also just read What Alice Forgot and The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty and really enjoyed them both.

Claire G said...

WE ARE ALL COMPLETELY BESIDE OURSELVES by Karen Joy Fowler. Don't read any synopses, just read the book! It is incredible, so well-written, so moving, so interesting. It's been days since I've read it and I'm still day dreaming and thinking about it. Favorite book I've read in a long, long time!!!

FoundVintageStyle said...

I bought it a week ago and don't want to start it until I'm on holiday in Palm Beach next week! So hard not to crack it open but I'm so looking forward to reading it!!!

imsovintage said...

I was so sad to see it end. Didn't want to ever put it down.

Laura

Angry Asian said...

just started And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini. i can already tell this book is going to make me sob.

i have the Goldfinch on my to read list, but i fear all the hype will lead to disappointment... that's how i felt about Gone, Girl.

Roseann Bath said...

Currently reading Jesus Land, and it's terrific. Just finished Marley and Me and I cried so hard throughout the last chapters that I could barely see the words on the page! I've added The Goldfinch to my library holds, thank for the recommendation!

www.roseannbathphoto.com

Judy Lewis said...

Lots of folks probably already read The Book Thief, but I just finished it. LOVED it, so endearing and beautiful. Also looking forward to Sue Monk Kidd's new book (Oprah selection). Also, reading the Bible in 90 days with an online group for comments. Never done it this way before. Learning tons!

Alexa said...

i finished it last week and can't wait to discuss it with my book club on saturday. it truly had me staying up late and waking up early to read! also, great for wintertime.

megan said...

This sounds really good. I've been wanting something good to read!! I think I found it!

Jillian said...

I just finished The Goldfinch last night! I didn't know anything about it going in, except that I loved Donna Tartt's first book (The Secret History) and didn't care for her second (The Little Friend). Pleased to report that I really enjoyed this one and would recommend it!

Natalia said...

I love your posts about books. I always read all of the comments to add to my list of "must read" books. I loved the Goldfinch. Also loved Americanah.

Bethley said...

I liked “The Goldfinch” and “The Secret HIstory.” I”m not sure I wanted to book to be longer. There is a lot of drug-fueled rambling.

I’m reading Ann Patchett’s “This is the story of a happy marriage” right now. It’s a collection of essays, but they read like a cross between memoir and fiction. I like that I can pick it and leave it while I chase around my kid!

districtandmore said...

Thanks for the recommendation! The last book I read was the Love Affairs of Nathaniel P.

http://districtandmore.wordpress.com/2013/11/27/november-book-list/

Kate said...

My husband and I recently (eleven seconds before Christmas) decided that every year we would get each other a book that we would be psyched to add to our shelves as permanent fixtures. He gave me The Goldfinch. I haven't started it yet, but I preemptively like that the experience of reading a great novel will be associated with him. (I also totally agree with avoiding not only plot spoilers but plotlines in general; the reading process is so unfettered!)

ashley said...

it took me about a fourth of the way through to really get into, but after that i was hooked. i would recommend "the casual vacancy" by jk rowling

Steph said...

I actually just reviewed The Goldfinch on my blog. I really enjoyed it (except for the dialogue, yeesh) but I love everything Tartt writes. http://stephanieearlygreen.com/book-review-monday-the-goldfinch-by-donna-tartt/

Maria Norcia Santillanes said...

I've passed up this book several times without looking at the synopsis, only because I wasn't intrigued by he title. I think I won't pass it up again and I like the idea of reading a book without reading the jacket first.

The Babster said...

Read it and really liked it. Also attended a talk by the author and she said she enjoyed writing the Boris character. I loved him too.

Elisha said...

The book is SO good. Go pick it up right now :)

LeeLi said...

For Christmas this year I bought my mom Someone by Alice McDermott, and my sister How Should a Person Be by Sheila Heti and they both breezed through them and raved about them, I can't wait to borrow both!

Michelle Ash Latham said...

This is perfect timing -- I just finished a book and was just about to start shopping around for a new one to read!

- Michelle www.ahealthymrs.com

Momma Nicholson said...

I'm reading it as we speak and cannot wait to go to bed each night, so I can get at least a few pages in... It is wonderful.

Esme said...

Read it. Loved it! Def one of the best I've read in a loooong time.

Alexandra K said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Amber said...

I just finished "the light between oceans" and loved it! It made me cry like a baby at the end, and I love when books have that effect on me!

Jocelyn said...

I finished The Goldfinch last week- I loved it! Donna Tartt is one of my all time favorite authors.

Alexandra K said...

I can't believe the overwhelmingly positive reaction to The Goldfinch! I couldn't finish it -- and this is coming from a librarian who hates abandoning books. I was so disappointed.

Georgia Jones said...

Just purchased this book! Now I am REALLY excited to read it!

Just finished "Between Two Oceans" for my book club and everyone liked it very much.

Georgia Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jen F. said...

Best book I've ever read.

Georgia Jones said...

"Light Between Oceans" Stedman ...sorry and "Signature of All Things" Elizabeth Gilbert.

180360 said...

I read it last month while breastfeeding. It was hard to hold but well worth it! :) I am happy to see so many people that also find her book, The Secret History, among their favorites. It's amazing and MUST be made into a movie. I highly recommend it, as well.

Donna said...

I will try to be nice but I ended up hating this book and didn't finish it. I just didn't want to waste any more of my time with the characters who were truly horrible people. And a lame, lame, ending. (My husband told me how it ended. He didnt like it either.) Sorry.

Try "Cutting for Stone".

Jana said...

I'm looking forward to reading The Goldfinch. I've heard wonderful reviews. I just read The Lowland which I absolutely loved. Also, The Husband's Secret was excellent. I'm currently reading The Interestings, which I like a lot, but it's not a page-turner necessarily. And my absolute favorite always is A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. :)

Rebeka said...

I second "Me Before You", "Middlesex" and I don't know if anyone suggested it, but "The Fault in Our Stars" was good too. I might have to check this one out, although I'm interested to read the plot synopsis before I commit :) happy reading.

Natasha said...

I'm a few pages away from the end. It has been a good book but it is too long. I think she goes on too long on various tangents and it becomes frustrating. I'm not sure that I would recommend it.

honeymelon said...

I definitely recommend "Me Before You" by Jojo Moyes. Currently my favorite book, and I would love to hear your thoughts on it. :)

gshust said...

this book is incredible! i am so excited for you to read it. in fact, i just posted about it myself recently.

http://www.letters2slinkie.com/book-club-2/

enjoy!

Haley said...

ALL of Gillian Flynn's books are great. Page turners, really fast reads. "Me Before You" by JoJo Moyes was also really enjoyable. OH, and "Orange is the New Black."

Steph said...

The painting the cover is based on is currently be displayed at either the Met or MOMA, I can't remember which. There was a story on the news about another painting that people are lining up to see because of it being a cover of a book and how this one is getting attention as well. It apparently is a teeny tiny thing.

Kristina said...

I'm currently on the waitlist at my library for this, can't wait!

Jennifer S. said...

I just finished that book a week or so ago and really enjoyed it. I didn't love the way it ended, but it wasn't a bad ending. It's a great book to submerge yourself in, and it's long enough that you won't try to read it all in one sitting (unlike books like The Hunger Games). I listened to the audiobook version on Audible and the reader was very good! I'm a couple stories into Karen Russel's short story collection "Vampires In The Lemon Grove" and really enjoying that.

-Jen
yourstrulyjen.com

crispin korschen said...

The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton. She has just won the Booker prize with this book. It's long as well but image the beautiful characterisation of Dickens with an intriguing kind of who done it. I loved it.

nycsunflower said...

Someone earlier recommended Life After Life by Kate Atkinson. While I haven't had the chance to read this book yet, I have read her Jackson Brodie series recently and loved it. They are mysteries and are so intricately plotted. The kind of books you stay up (too) late reading because you want to see what happens next.

Quelle Rigolade said...

I read it over the Christmas holidays and absolutely loved it!! Very addicting, and also fun to read as a New Yorker since a large part of the novel takes part there.

donzwebb said...

Hi Joanna! I'm excited to read 'the Goldfinch' now.:) Gonna add it to my mile-long reading list. Some recent favourites of mine: Orange is the New Black by Piper Kerman, brain on Fire: My Month of Madness by Susannah Calahan (sooo well-written but unfortunately made me even more of a hypochondriac!),and I'm halfway through The Lost Girls by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett & Amanda Pressner (given your love of travel you'll more than likely enjoy it). Happy reading! - Donna

Amy Stanfield said...

I'm looking forward to reading this next. Right now I am really enjoying Guests On Earth, by Lee Smith.

Anna said...

I'm reading Claiming Ground, by Laura Bell. (Recommended by the Noisy Plume.) It's a memoir by a woman who went to Wyoming as a young woman in the 70s. She stayed several years as a sheepherder. It's amazing.

Odelysse said...

"The Ocean at the end of the lane " is wonderful and short. Definitely don't read anything about it before you pick it up. It's simply magical.

Nicole S said...

This has been on my "to read" list, but after seeing your post about it you've motivated me to order it tonight! :)

Karen said...

Loved The Goldfinch. I'd also recommend "Where'd You Go, Bearnadette?", and one of the very best books I've ever read, "The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Attwood. She was the first writer I read who wrote in a way where every comma and period had meaning. No fast reading her writing.

Kathy said...

I'm currently reading The Goldfinch, and can't put it down! Before The Goldfinch, Bobcat by Rebecca Lee and Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro had me completely taken with short stories.

I've also got The Telling Room (a book about the world's greatest piece of cheese!) and The People of Paper on my list of books to read next.

Vanessa said...

I got this book for Christmas, but school has resumed so I haven't started it yet. I think I might start it even though I read so much for school that, even though I love reading for pleasure, I don't want to spend my precious little spare time reading.

Emily said...

Transatlantic was my favorite book I read in 2013. His writing is really incredible; I had a little trouble getting through the first section but the plot picks up after a few chapters and becomes really incredible.

I also enjoy reading books without knowing the plot first. I have The Goldfinch on hold from the library and am looking forward to reading it!

Jemma Doley said...

I'll add this to my list! Just finished Raymond Carver's What we Talk About When we Talk About Love - not usually a short story fan but really enjoyed it! :)

Jem

www.poptherapy.blogspot.com

Grace Ann Ekström said...

My book club group just finished The Lowland, by Jhumpa Lahiri and for probably the first time since I can remember we actually talked about the book the entire meeting! It was deep and moving and sad and hopeful, all at the same time. Loved it!

Caitlin Flint said...

I'm reading this at the moment! It's taking me a while to get through but it's pretty addictive and gloriously well written.

a broad at home said...

I just bought this book last week after finishing another novel of hers, The Secret History, which was fantastic. I can't wait to read this! Like you, I haven't read anything about it so I don't really know what's going to happen but I love the suspense of unfolding a novel.

If you're looking for something else soon I'd highly recommend Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter. It's sharply written and at turns hilarious, poignant, whimsical and sad. Definitely a keeper :)

Happy reading!

Lynn said...

I love goodreads to keep a list of book recommendations.

For new American authors I like Ann Patchett, especially Run and Bel Canto.

I also enjoyed the Privileges by Jonathon Dee (New Yorker review here, http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/books/2010/02/15/100215crbo_books_wood)


For historical fiction I enjoyed Loving Frank by Nancy Horan (about Frank Lloyd Wright). She also has a new book out called Under the Wide and Starry Sky about Robert Louis Stevenson (yes that one).

For classics, well Anna Karenina and 100 Years of Solitude are my favorite.

On my current to read list is the Interestings my Meg Wolitzer.

lau_benard said...

Recently finished reading and recommending to all my friends A Fierce Radiance by Lauren Belfor. If you like historical fiction this is a great read.

marlene said...

Oh I love Jhumpa Lahini. I need to buy that Lowland book when it comes out in paperback.

I want to read this book too!! We're leaving on Saturday for Anguilla and I'm trying to compile my beach reading, but I don't think I want to lug around such a large book. I'll save it for by-the-fire reading. Thanks!

Joanna said...

The Goldfinch is a stunner. You will not be disappointed.

Mary Kate said...

I might be the only person in the world who didn't like The Secret History by this same author. She's a great writer but every character in that book is just despicable, there was no one to root for. Based on that I'm not sure about this. Maybe I'll wait til it becomes available at the library rather than buy it (I have a book buying problem).

Molly said...

Ahhhh, the Goldfinch has been on my reading list since I heard Donna Tartt was coming out with a new book. Her book The Secret History is one of my all time favorites.

Aritchie89 said...

Thanks for the recommendation, Ive been looking for a good book to start on!

-Anna-

Tried-trueblog.com

Stephanie DiFazio said...

The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach. It was amazing!!!

lucylucia said...

We Need to Talk About Kevin - by Lionel Shriver. Easily the best book I've read in about 3 years and I read about 185 books in that time! Also, I recently read A Tale for the Time Being - By Ruth Ozeki which was sweet and wistful.

Sasa Zoe said...

Wow have to check that book out<3

www.shallwesasa.com

dc said...

Loving all the recommendations! I recently returned from a trip down south where we went to the Walter Anderson Museum in Ocean Springs MS. I loved his artwork and was so fascinated to learn more about his life that I've reserved 5 books from the library and am just waiting for them to get here.

I tend to get hooked on an author and read whatever I can by them. Past authors I've enjoyed include Willa Cather, Wallace Stegner and Ivan Doig. I'm going to buy Goldfinch because I know my husband will want to read it too and he's a much slower reader then me.

Emily Johnson said...

I actually just finished reading Tartt's first novel--The Secret History--a bit dark, but I'm looking forward to reading The Goldfinch.

I love starting the year with a new reading list and these are some others I hope to read in 2014:
http://offtheshelftheblog.com/2014/01/14/2014-book-list/

Emily Dara said...

This is perfect timing, I was just looking for a good read for my trip to Germany on Sunday!

becauseijustdo said...

Her first book "The Secret History" is one of my all time favorite books. I've started "The Goldfinch" but I am a mother of a boy and wow its tough to get through the beginning... you'll soon see what I mean.

becauseijustdo.com said...

So hard to get through the beginning of "The Goldfinch" as the mother of a boy... you'll see.

lauravaughn said...

Well I guess I will be making a stop at the bookstore on my way home tonight! I love all the other book recommendations in the comments, too! I have a lot of travel coming up this year, so I will definitely be referring back to some of these suggestions.

CarmenB. said...

Goldfinch is on my To Read list.
Can't wait to get to it.
Currently reading 11/22/63, and I can't believe how great it is. I'm also reading Stardust, which is my first Neil Gaiman book. I'm really enjoying it.

Happy reading!

Sue Harris said...

Loved it--excellent book.

Sue Harris said...

I really love a book that came out a few years ago called The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.

I also love anything by Tracy Kidder. We have given Mountains Beyond Mountains to many people as a gift. It's life changing.

Laura. said...

I am in the process of reading "The Goldfinch" right now. I am almost halfway through it, but unfortunately, I do not like it nearly as much as I enjoyed "The Secret History". I basically couldn't put "The Secret History" down, but I find myself having to consciously and decidedly pick "The Goldfinch" up!

Adela said...

I just reserved the book from my CML library and I am #453! Can I wait?? after reading the reviews I don't think I can.

nicole said...

I just finished The Goldfinch a few days ago- and although I have a pile of books lined up to tackle next, I can't quite seem to get these characters out of my mind-

Sarah Zindt said...

Ooh I will have to download this. I just finished reading The Dinner by Herman Koch...it got mixed reviews but I really liked it...it was a very quick read, I would recommend it!

Megan said...

I just started Goldfinch. awesome. Her book the Secret History was also fantastic, although I didn't really like Little Friend.
My biggest recommendation for right now, though, is "Night Film" by Marisha Pessl. Holy greatness. By far and away my favorite book of 2013. And probably the last 5 years. It's in the same vein as Gone, Girl (which is also fantastic) but...better.

Megan said...

I just started Goldfinch. awesome. Her book the Secret History was also fantastic, although I didn't really like Little Friend.
My biggest recommendation for right now, though, is "Night Film" by Marisha Pessl. Holy greatness. By far and away my favorite book of 2013. And probably the last 5 years. It's in the same vein as Gone, Girl (which is also fantastic) but...better.

: P said...

It's a fantastic read. When you've finished you should check out the Dutch Masters exhibition at the Frick, which includes The Goldfinch painting.

: P said...

It's a fantastic read. When you've finished you should check out the Dutch Masters exhibition at the Frick, which includes The Goldfinch painting.

Sydney said...

I finally got around to reading Fear of Flying and it is EXCELLENT! Another "been around forever and not read it" is Jane Eyre. A really good read! Such wonderful character development and so emotion filled.

Vicki ShoppeGirls said...

I am really enjoying reading at the moment. I have thought about this book. I just may have to purchase and read.

mamamgeni.com said...

I love Donna Tartt, and especially loved The Secret History. But my best read of 2013 was The Golem and the Jinni. The friend who recommended it to me said, "Honestly, toward the end I was turning pages before I had finished reading them." It was THAT good...

Unknown said...

The Gargoyle, by Andrew Davidson, is easily the best contemporary fiction I've ever read. it's heavy but I absolutely adore it.

Nell Frabotta said...

In the middle of this now! Cannot put it down. Also, as opposed to The Secret History, I am totally attached to the narrator. Enriches the story that much more. Favorites this year: The Circle by Dave Eggers, Tenth of December by George Saunders and the Orphan Master's Son by Andrew Johnson.

Trina said...

I saw the actual Goldfinch painting on the Mauritshuis loan to S.F.'s de Young Museum (I believe it's now in Bologna, Italy, after stopping in Atlanta and NYC). Saw it on so many year-end lists in December that it'll have to go on my to-read list.

Unknown said...

i loved liz gilbert's new novel. it's crazy to think of all the boat travel and exploration before planes. it was a page turner. i negelected my kids all week and indulged myself!

SAFBoundless said...

I'm reading this at the moment (300 pages since last thursday snatched on trains!) and sometimes forget where I am! I definitely agree that it has a feel of children's literature about it, and that makes it feel comforting somehow.

Adam, Belinda & Rondo said...

her book, the little friend, is one of my favourite all time books. thanks for the heads up on this one!

Kate said...

IT"S SO GOOD! I didn't sleep for weeks because I couldn't put it down. I also read A Dual Inheritance, Night Film, The Secrets of Happy Families (non-fiction), The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Sweet Tooth ... all so good. This winter is one for good books!

Kendra said...

Where'd You Go Bernadette by Maria Semple is cheeky and smart. It's also fairly light and sweet if you're looking for something to get through quickly!

Amonet said...

Tell the Wolves I'm Home is my new favorite. Beautifully written and the characters linger with you.

Amonet said...

Tell the Wolves I'm Home is my new favorite. Beautifully written and the characters linger with you.

joan.ekimball said...

Everyone's reading it

Jessi Lee said...

Thanks for the recommendation! I am stuck in a Bangkok hotel for the next 4 days and just started reading it this morning :)

cheyenne said...

so curious about the gold finch! i'm gonna buy this week when i'll go to the city :)
xo, cheyenne

Kathy Rose said...

My husband got me this book for Christmas and it is sitting unopened on my desk. Will start it this weekend for sure!

Emily Camenga said...

I picked up The Goldfinch because Donna Tartt's other novel, The Secret History, is one of my all time favorite novels. It took me a little bit to get into The Goldfinch, but now it's moving along very quickly and I can't wait to see what happens!

jennifer said...

So many great books out there! I've loved The Night Circus, The Memory Thief, and The Obituary Writer, among many many others...will have to check out The Goldfinch now! :)

Valerie said...

I've had good luck lately & have really like everything I've read in the past few months. Some recent faves: Me Before You, And the Mountains Echoed, The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and The Namesake.

Gina said...

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows. My favorite grownup book ever. First will be Matilda by Roald Dhal forever and ever.

Meriç Rodoplu said...

Today I downloaded the audio book for Goldfinch and seeing you writing a post about it gave me chills :) Millon times more curios about the book now...

Andrea Barajas said...

Adding this to my reading list now!
v-is-for-violet.blogspot.com

Lynne Millar said...

I'm so excited to read this book! I'm on the list at the library holding my breath.

I read a lot of YA novels (vetting for my kids - which has made me love the genre) and just read Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein - maybe one of my favorite books ever, it's a WW2 spy novel that's really about friendship. I loved it SO MUCH. Also Bomb by Steve Sheinkin was amazingly interesting and informative.

Laurel Ridge Publications Class said...

I read The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbauch in a little over 2 days, part of which included a trans-atlantic-trans-continental flight upon which the movies weren't working AND I was in coach, but I couldn't have cared less. I missed the characters when I finished.

Laurel Ridge Publications Class said...

I read The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbauch in a little over 2 days, part of which included a trans-atlantic-trans-continental flight upon which the movies weren't working AND I was in coach, but I couldn't have cared less. I missed the characters when I finished.

Mish P Lifeontheslowtrain.wordpress.com said...

Hi Jo first time poster here - I LOVE your blog - so inspiring, fun, smart, and more besides....!.
I just wanted to say I just finished the last page of The Goldfinch and it is amazing. The voice of the main character is magnetic, and you just can't put the book down!
I just had a 10 hour flight with my four year old and the trusty I-pad meant I got hours of peace & quiet to read a good chunk of it. I know, not the best parenting ;-)
Mish

Kristin Moomey said...

Where'd You Go Bernadette... Hilarious. Enjoyed every minute.

Dorothy DeMaria said...

Great novel, also loved The Book Thief, The Language of Flowers, Tell The Wolves I'm Home, The Cover Of Snow (an exceptional debut novel) and Sea Creatures. Just a few of the really great books I read in 2013

Caroline said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Me said...

I liked Goldfinch quite a bit but it was not an upper. Despite the theme of beauty, the theme that we cannot choose our own hearts made me feel really sad about a lot of events in the second half of the book. I'm glad I read fast; otherwise, I think I would have had emotional malaise for weeks. Although it did draw me in and her writing is gorgeous. The way she writes about certain feelings perfectly crystallizes some really heavy, overwhelming emotions into words. So, yes I would recommend it but the reading experience was very different than what I expected. And I agree with anonymous above- the ending was pretty hamfisted.

Books recs I have are Suite Francaise, Middlesex and the Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay.

Hannah B. Slaughter said...

I will have to add this to the list. I don't read a ton of fiction, but if it has this many fabulous reviews, it must be worth it!

I'm reading My Fair Lazy at the moment, and it is too funny! My friend got me hooked on Jen Lancaster with The Tao of Martha, and I guess I'm just on a Jen Lancaster roll lately.

Desi McKinnon said...

I loved it too. I listened to it because I knew it would take me years to get around to reading it. The last chapter has haunted me all week.

Nic said...

I am incredibly intrigued and I must find this book! Thanks for the recommendation.

chevrons & anchors

Knicker Elastic Fantastic said...

Ooooh, just spotted in amazon (as I was investigating purchasing it!!) that it's publishe by Little, Brown. They always publish such fabulous books! :)

Totally agree - if u have a good recommendation, why spoil the suspense by reading the plot synopsis?! I never do!! Living life on the edge, ha!!

karissa said...

I've heard a lot of good things about this book, although I have no clue what its about! Now I MUST pick it up!

http://thelittleturquoisehouse.blogspot.com/

eljohnny said...

The Goldfinch has been moved to the top of my list of books to buy. Another one that was brought to my attention just today was Quiet by Susan Cain. It is a well researched book about what life is like for an introvert living in a world that is structured for extroverts. As an introvert I am very curious to learn more about myself through her thoughts, real life stories, and research. She also presented her thoughts on Ted Talks.

Christina said...

I'm reading it now on my e-reader. I knew it was thick, but hard to tell how thick when it's on a device. I think I like reading it on that, because I know it's long, but I don't want to be disappointed when I realize I only have a few pages left. It's great!

Christy said...

The Fault in Our Stars is the best book I read all year. I liked it so much I read it twice.

Also Me Before You, Silver Linings Playbook & This Star Won't Go Out. xx

Krystal Pearson said...

I'm almost finished with this book and I love it. The only little thing that bugged me (as an English major) was the amount of typos I found! I had to resist the urge to go through it with a red pen. But It's a great novel, a little slow at times, but it reminds me of David Copperfield or Great Expectations.

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jenny k said...

I am reading The Goldfinch now and absolutely love it. I also loved A secret history. I hated hated hated Life after Life by Kate Atkinson, what crap! I will read The Luminaries next and Americanah too but honestly, I don't want the Goldfinch to end!!!!

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