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David Pittu is brilliant in evoking all the different characters, and just like the painting the book has been named after, this book will remain a masterpiece to be savoured into the future.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful
I found this book annoying on several levels. We are told of a disaster looming in Theo's life early in the book but the time taken to get to the deails of the event nearly drove me crazy. I found the narrators monotone voice nearly put me to sleep, especially bad as I was on a long drive. Finally I find books about people on a path of self destruction very irrating and the insights I got into drug induced minds wasn't for me.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful
I was fortunate enough to attend a recent Guardian Book Club where Donna Tartt was talking about her first novel, The Secret History. I was even more fortunate enough to personally ask her about her books being made into audiobooks (she has narrated both her previous novels)
I was curious to find out how she felt about David Pittu's narration of her third novel, particularly as she has always been totally against her novels being made into movies because she doesn't like the thought of her character's voices being interpreted by a director or actor.
Her response to my question was fascinating to me as I've always wondered whether authors have much of an input into their novels being made into audiobooks. She said that she had wanted to narrate The Goldfinch herself but didn't have the time in her schedule, so instead she listened to many audition tapes and eventually chose Pittu because she liked the way he read the very strange,but somehow loveable, Boris.
She then spent many hours with David Pittu on the telephone and described to him all of the voices and how each character should sound. I love that she did this, I am fascinated that each character has the voice she intended for them, this 'schooling' of the narrator really has paid off.
She said that she hadn't yet listened to the finished audiobook but hoped that it was good, she asked me if I enjoyed it, to which I replied it is one of the best audiobooks I've ever listened to. And it really is truly the best audiobook I've ever listened to, as good as if not better than some of my favorites- Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, Under The Dome, The Help, NOS4R2, the Name Of The Wind. I wonder if the authors of these novels had the same kind of input to the audio versions of their novels as The Goldfinch has had.
It is truly a work of art and will stay with me forever. My advice- don't read too many reviews, the less you know the better, just listen to this book and let it take you a place only the most special of authors and narrators can help you journey to.
124 of 131 people found this review helpful
Loved this book. Not my typical genre, but selected by my bookclub....but while they might all be reading it, I opted for the audio version! Brilliant.
On paper, the story plot itself appears quite straightforward, and in the interests of avoiding spoilers, I won't elaborate. However, it's the characters and their emotions that bring this book to life. Watching Theo, and the tragedy of his life unfold, exacerbated by some of the decisions he makes....it's like watching a runaway train gathering momentum, and there's nothing you can do to stop it as it surely rushes towards a disastrous end.
The characters are all richly developed, and the plot seamless.
A hugely satisfying book, in every way. I didn't want this book to end ......I needed to know about the next 20+ years of all their lives....
The narration is excellent, with wonderfully distinct and appropriate voices for the characters.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Yes, because it's a masterpiece.
What was one of the most memorable moments of The Goldfinch?
When Boris reappeared and told his ambivalent and appalling news.
What about David Pittu’s performance did you like?
That he got away with such a terrible range of accents. I disliked his American twang and it took me many chapters to relax with it, but he made up for it with Boris and with Hobie.
If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?
Something more precious than a masterpiece
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Given the many reviews with comments about the excessive length of this book, I was hesitant to commit to listening through it all. But, the detail and attention paid to the various phases of the story are worth it as the book comes to completion, and the arc of the narrative reveals significance in parts of the story that might have otherwise been edited out to cut it down. If you want to listen but are scared of the length, I recommend investing the time. I'm glad I did.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful