Tuesday, April 7, 2009

What I'm Reading: The Secret History

I missed The Secret History when it first came out in 1992, and a friend recently recommended it.

The story follows an elite group of classics students at a New England college. When a bacchanal leads to murder, the group makes a series of bad decisions. The group struggles to cope, but ultimately splinters and disintegrates under the weight of its collective guilt. The tragic outcomes are Greek in their scope.

And this terse summary is exactly opposite to the way the book reads.

The Secret History is a dense, thoughtful novel, but it is about 200 pages longer than I wanted it to be. Fortunately, Donna Tartt's intelligent and persuasive writing is a pleasure to read. I do plan to look up her second book, The Little Friend.

Now I'm on to The Elegance of the Hedgehog, although I'm still wrapping up Jhumpa Lahiri's Unaccustomed Earth.

The fiction mania continues.

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