The Secret History – Donna Tartt

Trigger warning for homophobic remarks.

Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality their lives are changed profoundly and for ever.

My Thoughts:
This book follows the main character Richard as he joins a very exclusive classics class in university. This class consists of 5 other students the twins; Chares and Camilla, Henry (the leader it would seem), Francis and Bunny. This group of individuals comes across as aloof and superior to everyone else as they never seem to interact with people outside of their group. The teacher Julian, is not very liked among his peers as he doesn’t like to follow the rules of the university.

We follow Richard as he joins this group and tries to find his place among them. They are very secretive and seem to always be up to something that Richard isn’t privy too. But then things go very wrong and Richard finds himself in the middle of a secret that can’t be told to anyone.

This is a very interesting book, I absolutely love the way Donna Tartt writes, it is very engaging and you think you have finally figured something out when all of a sudden you find yourself back not knowing anything.

I sometimes found myself frustrated because as we are following Richard we don’t know what is going on with the rest of the characters and what they are hiding. You know they are up to something but quite what that is and the way Tartt writes just keeps you enthralled throughout.

I liked watching the characters grow and then in some cases start to fall apart, I found it really interesting how Tartt managed to keep the characters both engaging and incredibly frustrating. They kept their characteristics even through their own descent into chaos, and there are times when I found myself feeling bad for a character when that same character had you enraged two pages earlier!

14 thoughts on “The Secret History – Donna Tartt”

  1. I’ve been intrigued by The Secret History for ages, and I did enjoy The Goldfinch, but Donna Tartt’s books are so long so I’ve put off reading it! Thanks for sharing your thoughts – I’m sure I’ll get round to reading The Secret History at some point!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love when authors keep you guessing especially when characters have life-changing secrets. Too often I figure them out way too early so it’s fun to find books where I can’t do that. Thanks for the recommendation.

    Liked by 1 person

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