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The Goldfinch 

By Donna Tartt (Little, Brown)

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Donna Tartt releases a book about every 10 years. The Goldfinch began gestating around 1993, while the author was visiting Amsterdam, was researched largely in a New York library and further inspired by a trip to Las Vegas. So it's no surprise that the novel treats all three places with such detail they become surrogate characters. At nearly 800 pages, this book delves so deeply into its main character, Theo Decker, it takes on the honesty and texture of real life. Constructed around a terrible tragedy that causes Theo to gain possession of a priceless masterpiece, Carel Fabritius' "The Goldfinch" (1654), the novel maps a lifetime of guilt and trauma, the struggle between right and wrong and the lengths to which Theo will go to distract himself from trauma. A marvel of storytelling and a masterpiece in its own right, The Goldfinch should satisfy Tartt fans for at least another decade.

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Vol 25, No 4
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