Bonnie's Reviews > The Secret History

The Secret History by Donna Tartt
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's review
Mar 16, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: 1001, owned-book, full-of-wonderful, adult, literary-fiction, mystery, unreliable-narrators, z-2012, boarding-schools
Read from June 21 to July 13, 2012

'I suppose at one time in my life I might have had any number of stories, but now there is no other. This is the only story I will ever be able to tell.'

I was pretty blown away at how much I enjoyed this. It took me almost an entire month to read (which is practically unheard of for me) but this is one that you definitely can't zoom right through in my opinion. Incredibly detailed and enthralling, I'm really glad that I paced myself and took my time because this is one to be savored.

Truly compelling, you already know from the very first line what's to come:

'The snow in the mountains was melting and Bunny had been dead for several weeks before we came to understand the gravity of our situation.'

All of the characters were vibrant and completely unforgettable. Despite knowing exactly what's to come, the beauty of this story is the slow unraveling process that the author takes you through, detailing each and every step the friends took to get to that final moment. I can definitely see why this one is considered a modern classic.
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Quotes Bonnie Liked

Donna Tartt
“Some things are too terrible to grasp at once. Other things - naked, sputtering, indelible in their horror - are too terrible to really grasp ever at all. It is only later, in solitude, in memory that the realization dawns: when the ashes are cold; when the mourners have departed; when one looks around and finds oneself - quite to one's surprise - in an entirely different world.”
Donna Tartt, The Secret History

Reading Progress

07/02/2012 page 193
07/08/2012 page 211
40.0% "'But if I've learned one thing in my short sad life, it is that that particular platitude is a lie. Love doesn't conquer everything. And whoever thinks it does is a fool.'"
08/15/2016 marked as: read
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Comments (showing 1-11 of 11) (11 new)

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message 1: by Jim (new) - added it

Jim Very well done, Bonnie! I really should read this and more of the 1001 - your example is very inspiring.:)

I bought this when it first came out and reviewers were raving. It's been sitting on the shelf ever since. You make a very strong case for dusting it off and digging in!

Bonnie Thanks, Jim. (And long time no see! At least in my timeline. :) )
This one also sat on my shelf for an extremely long time and I'm so pleased at how much I enjoyed it. I hope you do as well!

message 3: by Jim (new) - added it

Jim Thanks so much, Bonnie! I have been dealing with a lot of life distractions, and those issues have cut deep into my GR time and energy level. But thanks very much for the kind words, and I look forward to more quality time with great GR friends, and to enjoying this book!

Bonnie Well, it's good to see you back on Goodreads. Hope life gets back to normal soon. :)

message 5: by Jim (new) - added it

Jim It's great to be here and talking with you!:) I am pretty confident that things will be resolved in my favor, and it can't happen soon enough, that's for sure. Thanks again for your support and kind words - they are very much appreciated!

Bonnie That's good news, I'm glad. :)

message 7: by Jim (new) - added it

Jim Thanks, Bonnie! :D

message 8: by L (new) - rated it 5 stars

L F Brilliant review.

Bonnie Thank you, L!

message 10: by L (new) - rated it 5 stars


message 11: by L (new) - rated it 5 stars


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