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The Goldfinch

Eleven years in the writing, the impact of this novel will last for many more

By Elaine Showalter   October 2013

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (Little, Brown, £20)

I don’t like to give away the ending of a novel, but in the case of Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, I don’t want to reveal details of the beginning. Why risk spoiling a reader’s encounter with the shock and ambition of Tartt’s metaphysical thriller? Suffice it to say that her hero, 13-year-old Theo Decker, survives a terrible accident in which his adored mother dies, and he forms a profound attachment to a celebrated (and real) small painting of a goldfinch by…

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