Donna Tartt - The Goldfinch

A glorious novel that pulls together all her 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) - via

The Goldfinch is an epic book, it comes in at 800 pages and spans about 15 years. I'd previously read Secret History and was blown away by her writing. This one is even better.

It follows a boy who comes into possession of a famous painting, The Goldfinch, just as his world starts to fall apart and his journey with it. I would normally find the narrator's situation and choices hard to identify with but his story is told so well you get sucked along with him.

I have a confession - I didn't realise that the painting was a real one until I was half way through the book. I came across an article in the Guardian about the increase in popularity of the painting since the book. When you read it you'll see why. Her descriptions of it and it's magical influence on people who see it made me feel like it was an old friend. The book also deals with copies of originals - are they as good as seeing the real thing? I think that this book shows the power of a painting without you having to see it, but yes I do want to see the painting in person one day!