The Secret History by Donna Tartt

An elite and detached group of six classics students at a small Vermont college murder one of their number. How has this come about?

The students are steeped in the cold, hard, and pure reality of the ancient Greek culture. Their characters undergo small steps and changes of mind that makes it possible for them to look at horror unflinchingly. In their minds they lose the distinction and dividing line between art and reality – they become addicts to the aesthetic.

Unsurprisingly there is a price to pay, and Tartt shows the personal disintegration of them all. Tartt’s ( lyrical and compelling prose mesmerises the reader towards a similar fascination to that which her characters experience. This is a campus thriller full of literary allusion and depth. Definitely one for those fascinated by the ancient Greeks.

First published 1992.

660 pages in Penguin Books paperback edition.

ISBN 978-0140167771

Donna Tartt

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