Good writing

One of the many wonderful things Donna Tartt does in her writing (see The Goldfinch) is use descriptive ‘lists’ … this is a technique that really adds depth and interest to her writing:

“What I somehow hadn’t expected was a city prinked-up for Christmas: fir boughs and tinsel, starburst ornaments in the shop windows and a cold stiff wind coming off the canals and fires and festival stalls and people on bicycles, toys and color and candy, holiday confusion and gleam. Little dogs, little children, gossipers and watchers and package bearers, clowns in top hats and military greatcoats and a little dancing jester in Christmas clothes a la Avercamp.”

This is Amsterdam, by the way … and Tartt gets a lovely rhythm going in this description.images-1

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