Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Pulitzer Prize Winner

And what a great novel it is. A young boy loses his mom in a bombing in a museum. But he manages to save a picture, a mysterious picture of a goldfinch.  He carries it with him through grief ridden wanderings but it does not save him from encounters with the dissolute and seamy side of American life. He finds love and friends but he has to find himself.

The Goldfinch tosses aside the oft-heard belief that successful fiction must be fast paced, action packed,  and, above all, short. The Goldfinch has its moments of action but it is a rather slow book, meditative, and careful.  It is the perfect book for those who believe in the new idea of  Slow Read whose proponents claim we are all skimming written and electronic material to the point where our brains have changed and lost the ability to savour the book.  The idea is related to the slow food movement, which makes similar claims.

I read the Goldfinch some months ago and think about it often.  It is that kind of book.

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