There's no living writer like Donna Tartt. Not since reading the Greek and Russian greats in college have I encountered a writer so gifted in weaving the melodramatic, even the supernatural, into the everyday; nor have I read prose so finely calibrated and opulent that the story's atmosphere quickly supplants my own. All of Tartt's novels — each a decade in the making — involve eccentric characters who find themselves in increasingly outlandish, dangerous situations. Her excellent debut novel, the literary thriller The Secret History, follows a cult-like group of classics students at a prestigious college who begin committing murders, possibly under the direction of Dionysus, Greek god of ritual madness. A spellbinding and darkly humorous drama of privilege and desire, The Secret History is the type of book you read through the night and think about long after you've finished. –Rhianna W.