The Little Friend
By Donna Tartt
BookMattic’s Rating: 2.5/5
Goodreads’ Rating: 3.42/5
After months of reading Donna Tart’s ‘The Little Friend’ I personally just could not get immersed into the story. It’s not that Tart is a bad author, on the contrary she wrote the words in this book beautifully. I emphasis the word ‘words’ because there are some phrases and descriptions in The Little Friend that still pop into my mind. But when it comes to the story as a whole I felt like there was no real direction to the book. I imagine that if you are a woman you might like this story much more than a man because the main character Harriet is a very convincing strong little girl who will do anything to get her way.
The Little Friend focuses on a young girl named Harriet whom before she was even born her family experienced a great tragedy. Her older brother Robin got murdered in the backyard of their own house. The story then takes off 12 years after Robin’s death with Harriet and her friend Hely trying to investigate who murdered Robin. No one was caught, there were few suspects but it seemed like Harriet was determined to find out who killed her brother. But this is really not the main idea to the story.
Tart wanted to focus more on the inner workings of Harriet’s messed up family. Her mother is a bit crazy due to the fact that she lost her son and of course who could blame her! The mother can’t do anything about it though so she basically feels hopeless and lost, therefore Harriet spends a lot of time with her aunts which are also not quite there. Her father has left the family but still supports them and comes around once in a blue moon. And to top things off Harriet’s teenage sister Allison is a very subdued girl that often stares off into space and doesn’t really give a crap about what’s going on around her, or at least that’s how it seems.
So the story doesn’t have that much direction because it’s mostly focused on how Harriet deals with the situations in her life. She’s got no real role model to show her reason in life. She’s strong willed though and very intelligent and makes for a good protagonist in this story which I liked a lot. Tart writes beautifully but unfortunately ‘The Little Friend’ fell flat for me throughout the whole book because it didn’t have the drive I was personally looking for.