Stephanie Dreyer

I'm 75% of the way through this book and am really struggling with it. I'm finding it incredibly drawn out for little reward - is it worth finishing?

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Bob Cowling No. The next 20% is just like the previous 75% - Theo making bad decisions and being a bystander to real stories. The final 5% of the book then beats you over the head with lessons that you should have learned if you were as smart as the author.
Like most people, I really enjoyed the imagery - the vocabulary - each sentence is a masterpiece. However it becomes so tedious. The only reason I finished the book was because I was hoping that the ending is where the Pulitzer merit was. It's not there. My money is on the fact that the Pulitzer committee read the first chapter or two and then voted.
Felix Schweizer I am at the very same point. Loved it in the beginning but it makes me frustrated. In every page, almost in every paragraph, Theo makes another stupid choice or is dealt another devastating blow. Where is the fun in that? I don't need hundreds of pages to know that the world is unfair. The beauty of the language makes up for some of this, but it would have been a more powerful book at 1/3 the length!
George Kouri Quitting before the end would be such a shame. Sometimes we struggle and sometimes we succeed. The Goldfinch is such a masterpiece that you will never regret finishing it. The Pulitzer committee may be book snobs but they are usually in touch with excellent works. One of my all time favorites.
Jeanne My thought is Tartt wrote "The Goldfinch," as an exercise in anxiety and tension. I am on edge reading and begging this cluster f#@$ to end like a Dickens novel with Theo becoming the man his mother was molding and not the loser his father was. However, Donna Tartt is not writing that book and I'm unconventional enough to be glad it's not all resolved and a "happy ever after" ending. Author Tartt is an amazingly talented writer. Every literary element; settings, characters and dialog is honest, purposeful and true.
Lynn Rudolph The reward? The reward is in every paragraph and the anticipation of the next event.
I will say after reading the comments....if you have started it and are disappointed already then don't finish it because it's not a book for you.
Damien Roberts I think a lot of the turn off is the length of the chapters. 100+ pages in a single chapter (especially if, like me, you like to read a full chapter in one sitting) can be incredibly tiring. That said, after finishing the novel I can now say that I have a new favorite. The last portion of the book is extremely fast paced and well done.
Raegan Teller I've decided I have no appreciation for bestsellers. I tried to read this book and didn't like it. Then I tried "The Girl on the Train" and didn't like it either.
Jodi I'm struggling too. It's very well written, but it's one crappy thing after another and the poor guy can't get a break. No comic relief, very few brights spots; it's depressing me. Does it end well at least? I've read books with characters that struggle, but there always seemed to be some hope even in the middle of it all. I'm finding no hope. Should I finish, or will I close the book and wish I'd never picked it up?
Cathy Sargent The audio version has made this book come alive for me. I get so much more out of hearing while I am walking on the beach or sitting in traffic. Therefore finishing to just making sure that I have not lost all of the 26 CD's. At one point, I panicked when I couldn't find CD 20 and 21. I couldn't believe that Theo was a black out drunk! The narrator made him sound like a character that you could believe in. I also was laughing in parts with Andy as his voice made him sound like a loveable, neuro untypical aspie. (autistic spectrum asperger syndrome)
Melissa Soto-Schwartz According to my Kindle I'm 43% of the way through the novel. Tartt writes well and has a keen eye for detail. But, the book, at least so far, has read like two completely separate novels. The first third was wonderful in New York, but Las Vegas has been insufferable. If the point of Tartt's book is to illustrate the randomness of life and its traumas, as well as the necessity to meditate upon the beauty of what we do have before us in spite of gilded cages, do I really need to finish the text?
Angie ColourMeBlessed For me it started getting good around 500 pages in. It remained gripping and fast paced until about the last 20 pages which were tedious.
Rad Yes it is drawn out. I am enjoying the writing. I am able to be drawn into the world of this young boy. I relate to his loneliness and his reactions to not having strong parental guidance or family support at this tender age. He makes bad decisions because he is trying to run away from his pain. I am enjoying the slow long journey. I want to keep reading to see how he deals with the pain and disappointments of real life.
Sam Jones You gotta finish it, Steph! You're almost there! Even if it is crap. :)
Nick Mueller Not if you're looking for a satisfying ending
Donald Schopflocher Don’t you want to know if Theo hooks up with Pippa? Or maybe Boris?
Alper Çuğun If you've made it to 75%, you might as well finish it. It would have been better to quit way earlier than that.
Kathy I struggled also and finished it but made me think that's a lot of reading I will never get back. I didn't like it. Depressing and much longer than it should have been. Author IS a brilliant wordsmith, descriptions and scenery are a delight but such a relentless sad story of defeat.
Pat Kennedy I agree with Bob Cowling's answer. The book was not worth finishing except for the gorgeous sentences and imagery. But Theo continues to not make much emotional advancement which is quite frustrating.
Trudie E Courtney I'm in the same position. Glad to read the comments!
Cristina Only a few pages in and I can't. I know I'm supposed to think the writing is brilliant, but I don't see that. I find the characters not plausible. The mother who has passion for art, is not talking about art with her son but lecturing like a professor, then after the "event" at the museum, it seems to me his reaction is not natural. I found the writing more tedious than brilliant.
Tom I'm with you, Stephanie. I am at about 80% and find it getting a bit tedious. I would love to be a fly on the wall in the office with Tartt and her editor. "Couldn't we trim some of the over-the-top extended neurosis sequences, Donna?" "Hey, I won the WH Smith Literary Award so don't tell me what to do!" I will admit that I am now curious about the movie.
K Absolutely not.
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