Dimensions: 544 Pages, 5.51 × 9.45 × 1.57 in
Published: September 5, 1992
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 0679410325
ISBN - 13: 9780679410324
From the Publisher
The first novel by Donna Tartt, author of the
National Bestseller The Goldfinch, The Secret
History is a contemporary classic.
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 forever, and they discover how hard it can be to
truly live and how easy it is to kill.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
From the Jacket
Storytelling in the grand manner, The Secret History is a debut remarkable for its hypnotic erudition and acute psychological suspense, and for the richness of its emotions, ideas, and language. These are the confessions, years afterward, of a young man who found at a small Vermont college the life of privilege and intellect he''d long coveted - and rarely has the glorious experience of youth infatuated with knowledge and with itself been so achingly realized. Then, amazed, Richard Papen is drawn into the ultimate inner circle: five students, worldly and self-assured, selected by a charismatic classics professor to participate in the search for truth and beauty. Together they study the mysteries of ancient Greek culture and spend long weekends at an old country house, reading, boating, basking in an Indian summer that stretches late into autumn. Mesmerized by his new comrades, Richard is unaware of the crime which they have committed in his dreamy, unwitting presence. But once taken into their confidence, he and the others slowly and inevitably begin to believe in the necessity of murdering the one classmate and friend who might betray both their secret and their future. Hugely ambitious and compulsively readable, this is a chronicle of deception and complicity, of Dionysian abandon, of innocence corrupted by self-love and moral arrogance; and, finally, it is a story of guilt and responsibility. An astonishing achievement by any standard, The Secret History immediately establishes Donna Tartt as a supremely gifted novelist.
About the Author
Donna Tartt was born in Greenwood, Mississippi, and is a
graduate of Bennington College. She is also the author of the
novels The Goldfinch and The Little Friend, both
of which are international bestsellers.
From Our Editors
A transfer student from a small town in California, Richard Papen
is determined to affect the ways of his Hampden College peers, and
he begins his intense studies under the tutelage of eccentric
Julian Morrow. BOMC & QPB Alt. Tour.
"A beautifully written story, well-told, funny, sad, scary, and impossible to leave alone until I finished. . . . What a debut!" --John Grisham "Powerful . . . Enthralling . . . A ferociously well-paced entertainment." -- The New York Times "An accomplished psychological thriller . . . Absolutely chilling . . . Tartt has a stunning command of the lyrical." -- The Village Voice "A smart, craftsman-like, viscerally compelling novel." -- Time "A thinking-person''s thriller . . . Think Lord of the Flies , then The Rules of Attraction . . . . The Secret History combines a bit of both--the unmistakable whiff of evil from William Golding''s classic and the mad recklessness of priviledged youth from Bret Easton Ellis''s novel of the ''80s. . . . As stony and chilling as any Greek tragedian ever plumbed." -- New York Newsday "Tartt''s voice is unlike that of any of her contemporaries. Her beautiful language, intricate plotting, fascinating characters, and intellectual energy make her debut by far the most interesting work yet from her generation." -- The Boston Globe "A long tale of friendship, arrogance, and murder knit together with the finesse that many writers will never have . . . Her writing bewitches us . . . The Secret History is a wonderfully beguiling book, a journey backward to the fierce and heady friendships of our school days, when all of us believed in our power to conjure up divinity and to be forgiven an