2013: #12 – Gone Girl (Gillian Flynn)

Title: Gone Girl
Author: Gillian Flynn
Format: Kindle
Pages: 432
Release Date: June 05, 2012
Publisher: Crown
Source: personal copy

Marriage can be a real killer.

One of the most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York Times bestseller Gillian Flynn takes that statement to its darkest place in this unputdownable masterpiece about a marriage gone terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed that her work “draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction.” Gone Girl’s toxic mix of sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every turn.

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer?

As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?

With her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.

My thoughts:

This book was nuts. I’m going to do my best to discuss it without spoilers.

Amy didn’t care to know my family, didn’t want to know my birthplace, and yet for some reason, I thought moving home would be a good idea.

This was the point at which I knew things were amiss. What sort of spouse doesn’t want to know about your family, your background? All was obviously not how it seemed in Nick and Amy’s marriage. But who, if anyone, was telling the truth?

The book is very well constructed, so much so that you can completely buy into the improbable circumstances. Because I was late to this particular party, I knew there was a giant twist. So when it came, I wasn’t surprised by its existence, but neither was I surprised by its content. I didn’t guess it, exactly, but it made sense to me. It almost had to be that way, in order for the story to continue.

Don’t expect to be able to root for either Nick or Amy. One’s evil, the other’s a weak whiner, and they’re probably both sociopaths. And that’s perfectly alright with me.

There are actions and reactions in the final act of the book that didn’t make a lot of sense to me, and were actually somewhat disappointing. That’s why I have to dock it a star. But if you like dark psychological thrillers, with characters you can’t quite like, then Gillian Flynn is definitely your girl.

Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound | WorldCat

Other reviews:

  • “I have no idea how to rate this book. It is a brilliantly written book, but I hated reading it. I will abscond from a number grade, and that is all.”The Book Smugglers
  • “Maybe it was just too long, but the characters didn’t pull me in – I did finish it, and I didn’t necessarily see the twist coming, but it missed a spark for me.”Adventures of a London Kiwi
  • “Tense, thrilling and also seriously, seriously twisted, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn is not for the faint of heart, but it is unputdownable. A total must read!”Daisy Chain Book Reviews

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