February 25th 2014

Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch has enthralled me. Along with so many of her other readers, I’ve been captive as the bird, utterly mesmerized and dumbfounded by her similes and the depth of mastery she uses to speak into and across, not only centuries, but straight down through depths of the blackest seas and darkest thoughts where she highlights small specks floating. In situations she recreates, with which we are all too know familiar, she brings us face to face with the confusion of mindblowing scenarios and leads us through to find hope when there is only a sense of despair. I hesitate to try to conjure adjectives for the panoply of flavors and colors, metals, languages, Scientific theories—her depth of knowledge of antiquities, atmospheres. What is left out?

In isolation that pales without its full (maybe she would improve upon full and and use the word furred) context) I quote her line: “Despair struck pure otherness and created something sublime.” Isn’t this the truest hope we have!? Donna also says: “There are moments we simply cannot endure. They transform us into someone else.” Her masterpiece itself has this kind of transformative power. For as long as I live I will keep the heart of Donna’s Goldfinch somewhere near, tucked into my soul. BRAVO Donna. I wish you, my nonreader, could be sitting here watching the sunset with me.