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#AtoZChallenge Letter G

The theme of my challenge is poetry and books inspired by art and/or art inspired by literature.

G  is for The Goldfinch Carel_Fabritius_-_The_Goldfinch_-_WGA7721

“The Goldfinch” painted by Carel Fabritius in 1654 is a realistic picture of a bird chained to its perch.  It is normally exhibited in The Hague.  This tiny painting with its broad brushstrokes was already renowned before Donna Tartt published her book “The Goldfinch” in 2013.

 

book gold

When I started to read The Goldfinch, I found myself caught up in the enormity of the explosion which took Theo’s mother from him so suddenly and with the depth of love and attachment he had for her.  I wanted the best for him, as his mother would have wished but life constantly played tricks, despite his inventiveness.  The fact that he was carrying around an incredibly valuable painting, without discovery was symbolic, ironic, absurd.

This very long book contains a large cast of characters, good and evil, both caricatures and solid, believable people.  Boris the Russian teenager, with his doubtful morals, is both humorous and depressing.  The ethereal Pippa, whom Theo first saw before the explosion gives hope for his future as he travels from New York to Las Vegas and finally to Amsterdam.

I found the last part of the book incredibly disappointing and yet I had to read on.  Could Theo act for himself and escape the downward spiral?  Did The Goldfinch give him hope of escape?  That is for you to judge.

Incidentally, Carel Fabritius died in a massive gunpowder explosion, so the potential he showed was never fully achieved.

Link to a list of the other A to Z Challengers

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About lizannelloyd

Love history, reading, researching and writing. Articles published in My Family History and other genealogy magazines.

12 responses »

  1. I’ve got The Goldfinch on my kindle to read. It’s been there for months though because I find the thought of such a long book to be really offputting. I know I’ll probably enjoy it once I get started!

    Stephanie Jane

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  2. I love the picture of the Goldfinch.
    Haven’t read the book, but my friend said it’s brilliant. I tried reading The Little Friend and just couldn’t get into Donna Tart’s style.

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  3. I’ve had the Goldfinch on my TBR for a while. It’s intimidating, even though I have read bigger books.

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  4. I absolutely LOVED The Goldfinch. I didn’t realize the artist died in an explosion. What clever symmetry from Tartt.

    Liked by 1 person

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  5. I loved the opening scenes, but I really struggled to maintain that same level of connection with the lead character and his story right through to the end. Rather than draw me in, the sheer amount of detail somehow distanced me from the novel. I do enjoy hearing other people’s responses to this book. Thanks for choosing it to feature here.

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  6. I haven’t read “The Goldfinch” and doubt I will. I find books with too many characters and too much detail just too difficult to get into.
    As authors, we are constantly reminded not to do these things in our writing, and I am surprised too that an editor didn’t suggest cutting it in this book.
    I enjoyed this post and love that.painting. Thank you.

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  7. Tried to read this book twice, and grabbed me neither time, alas 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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