The Secret History – Book Review
Author: Donna Tartt
Genre: Mystery, college students
My rating: ★★★☆☆
Release Date: Published 13th April, 2004 by Vintage (originally published 1992)
Format: Paperback, 658 pages
What did I think?
Upfront I want to say I think this was a great book that simply wasn’t quite my cup of tea.
This book had murder, incest, classics references, drunkenness, intrigue, lies and doubts. All sorts of exciting, and awful stuff. The Secret History was beautifully written, Tartt has a good command of language. But for me personally, it was rambling with some long-winded description that I could have done without. Also, too many dream sequences for my liking.
The book started slowly but then quickly announced a murder. I loved that! I read on, keen to know the details. There was a timeless feeling to the story (or the writing) that I also enjoyed. At the halfway mark I wrote this in an update on Goodreads: “The only way I can fault this book is on a personal level – that I prefer average sized books. The language, writing, storytelling, character development are all fabulous. I’m past halfway now and the story has turned…disturbing. To say the least. I can’t wait to read more.”
By the end, I was disappointed in certain aspects of the novel. The characters, while they held my interest, had only fleeting likability. There was a crazy amount of drinking in this book. How did any of the main characters get anything else done? Also, you would hope in over 650 pages there would be several anxious moments or jaw-drops, but for me there was only one: SPOILER REMOVED BUT YOU CAN READ IT ON GOODREADS. In the end I felt I had heated a pot on low and to be honest…did it ever really boil? Strings were tied up, yes, but it didn’t boil. I am giving this 3.5 stars because it wasn’t a bad book. I think it just wasn’t for me.
For more info: Goodreads – Or your local Library