The book was VERY well written. But I didn't like a single character. Not one. I've never encountered a book where I did not like or relate to a single character in the story line. The author was very good, the story-line was interesting and his attention to detail was amazing. The Narrator was suburb. The characters themselves were contemptible. Very puzzling book.
I could not finish this book. Although the beginning relating to Theo and his mother had appeal and poignancy, once Theo moved to Las Vegas I found the book completely off-putting. Perhaps that was the point, but in the end I couldn't continue to listen to the foul language, the drugging, the "being wasted," the sordid lives of the characters. If the book turned a corner later I was never to know. Maybe it would be different reading it, rather than listening to it.
The reader did a nice job, but the author must have been paid by the word as this book could easily have been cut by a third and would have been more interesting and moved along better. The main character Theo spends much of the book strung out on drugs making one bad decision after another. By the middle of the book I was annoyed with him and his choices, and had to persevere to get through the book.
Fabulous book! One of the best novels I have read in years.
No wonder the book is a winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2014. It is a book about art, about love for beautiful things, about the unclear (non-existing?) line between good and bad, but mostly about the human mind, and about struggles that are within. It is about the good and kind nature of some people, and about pitfalls and weaknesses of others. And mostly about how one can be shaped form a young innocent boy into something completely different if life circumstances lead him there. It is amazing how Tartt is able to put us into Theo's head and thoughts and fears, with her great story telling. David Pittu is doing an amazing job reading it, with Theo's voice, the Russian friend Boris, and many women's voices. And yes - the book is long, and maybe could be shortened by a bit, but it is worth it!
This was a remarkable book. The characters were so compelling. The final chapter ends in sheer poetry. Simply fantastic.
The first 9/10 of the book is completely worthwhile, full of action and characters and life. Then at the end she goes all deep and prolix, which you may find fascinating but was dull as mud to me. Still, it is worth reading.
Donna Tartt was born in Greenwood, Mississippi, and educated at the University of Mississippi and Bennington College. "The Secret History" was her debut novel.