To say that The Goldfinch is a good book, now, feels rather superfluous. Everyone has already read it and written about it and the most surprising thing is that it took me so long to read it. But its size was daunting and I’m always slightly put off by a book during its moment of high fashion, when it crowds in on you from every bestseller table and ‘must read’ list. This weekend, having to take two unplanned cross-country train journeys, I grabbed the closest thing to hand that would get me through four hours of the British rail network. That just happened to be a dogeared copy of The Goldfinch that I’d snaffled from the informal lending library at work.