So I’ve actually been reading books lately, though you wouldn’t know it by the look of the blog.
I’ve been reading ’em and not writing about ’em.
And I’ve also been bailing out before over-investing. Even on an audiobook I was sure I was gonna love.
I checked out The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (whose Secret History blew me away back in library school), after having read rave reviews of the book and audiobook. Plus, there’s an art angle, so I got all excited.
And the book starts out in Amsterdam, which I liked, then flashes back to the narrator’s childhood in New York, which also made me happy, setting-wise.
But that’s where the wheels started to fall off.
The thing is, the narrator’s mom dies when he’s a kid. And the whole first two discs are devoted to the endless details of the aftermath of the terrorist attack that injures him and kills his mother. And while he was describing (ad nauseam) the effects of the attack, I got annoyed because this author seriously needs an editor. (The audiobook is 28 discs long, people!) It felt self-indulgent, like when an author goes on forever during a dream sequence.
But then it got worse. The narrator returns home, where he and his mom had designated as their meeting-up place if anything bad ever happened, and she doesn’t come home. And the reader already knows she dies, but the narrator doesn’t know yet, and I just couldn’t handle it. The kid was only 13, and was about to lose his mom.
Everybody else on earth, I hope the book is as good as they say it is. I’ll be watching from the sidelines on this one.