Today I’m introducing a new favorite book! Check out my full spoiler-free review on our blog (link in bio!) My mom read this years ago and tried to get me to read it at the beach, but The Goldfinch is so incredibly detail-heavy that I couldn’t get into it. After reading The Secret History last year, I decided to give The Goldfinch another try.
I’m glad I did! This book is quite a feat to get through, but it’s worth the journey a hundred times over (and it made me miss New York so much!) If you like long and sweeping coming-of-age stories, this is the book for you. Like The Secret History, The Goldfinch is especially drug-heavy and most certainly not any easy read. I knew vaguely it was about art history when I started, but I never imagined the twists and turns this would take, or the impression it would leave!
What I love most about The Goldfinch is our protagonist, Theodore (Theo) Decker. Struck by tragedy in the first chapter (and then again, and again) some would say that he has an incredibly unlucky life. He makes someone bad choices that oftentimes you want to hit him over the head and scream, “What are you doing?” It’s his own difficult life and the messy relationships with the other characters–especially Boris, Pippa, Hobie, and even Popper–that give this book such a spark of life. When it was over, I’d spent so much time getting to know the characters that I didn’t want it to end!
The Goldfinch explores fate, grief and loss, the complexities of friendship, loyalty, and morality, the price of freedom, and the importance of fine art and historical objects of meaning. By the end I felt exhausted, but in the best way.
However, this book is A BRICK, which is why I found it easier to listen to on audio. The narrator did an incredible job making each character sound unique. I never would have been able to imagine Boris’s accent if I’d read this on my own.
VERDICT: 5 books!