The Secret History cover



The Secret History


The Secret History is the first novel by Donna Tartt, published by Alfred A. Knopf in 1992. Set in New England, it tells the story of a closely knit group of six classics students at Hampden College, a small, elite Vermont college based upon Bennington College, where Tartt was a student between 1982 and 1986. The Secret History is an inverted detective story narrated by one of the students, Richard Papen, who reflects years later on the situation that led to a murder—this having been confessed to at the outset, but with all other events being revealed sequentially. The novel explores the circumstances and lasting effects of Bunny's death on the academically and socially isolated group of Classics students of which he was a part. A 75,000 print order was made for the first edition (as opposed to the usual 10,000 order for a debut novel), and the book became a bestseller. It was originally titled The God of Illusions, and its first-edition hardcover was designed by Chip Kidd and Barbara de Wilde.
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original title: The Secret History
language: English
date of publication: 1992
genre: novel
narrative location: Vermont


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