I hate those grade-school level worn out cliches people always use in reference to books, like "I felt like I was there!" or:
"I couldn't put it down!"
<-- But in the case of this book, The Secret History by Missisissipi's treasure, Donna Tartt -- I'm sorry, they both apply! So I'm gonna use 'em!
The author began writing this book during her second year of college. That in itself, astounds me. The novel is just completely engaging and well, unput-downable.
629 pages in 8 gargantuan chapters! As much as I usually prefer hamburgers, I truly enjoyed these steaks!
I never wanted a chapter to end. Let me try and tell what it is about in one run-on sentence of Saramagian proportions…
It is the story of six rather eccentric college students in Hampden, Vermont, four of which, get so drunkenly involved in a night-time bacchanal celebration that a really bizarre thing takes place, a thing that will not only change their lives forever, but will also even ultimately cost a couple of lives, and so what ensues is a very deep examination of the effects of guilt and a profound look at wracked consciences stretched beyond the breaking point, or as one critic put it, "a murder mystery in reverse", since Donna Tartt lets us know in the very first pages that at least one subsequent death [to the baccahanal] will take place.
What a book.
I was not, for one minute, ever bored with this monstrous thing!
All the way along I was reminded of that axiom in The Merchant of Venice -- "the truth will out" -- because that is exactly what each of these characters also wonders.
Will, the truth, out?
I'm not telling.
You've just GOT to read The Secret History, to know the answer to that.
Absolutely amazing book.
Unreservedly recommended to Bookpuddlians everywhere!