Monday, September 29, 2014

Book Review: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Pages: 395
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pub. Date: May 24, 2012
Source: Personal Copy
My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads says, "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?"
Nick and Amy Dunne have been married for five years and at first glance they seem to live a happy, normal life.  At the beginning of the marriage they lived in Brooklyn, but they both lost their jobs and then Nick's parents got sick, so they decided to move back to his small town on the Mississippi to take care of them.  While living back in his hometown, Nick decided to open a bar, with Amy's family money, and runs it with his twin sister, Margo, or "Go" as he likes to call her.  He is also teaching classes at the local university and seems relatively happy, except Amy really hasn't really become fully acclimated to the mid-western lifestyle as she doesn't have a job or many friends.  On the morning of their fifth wedding anniversary, Amy is abducted from their home and the house is left in a state of disarray.  As the police investigation ensues, Nick is looking like a prime suspect, but many, many secrets abound in Gillian Flynn's brilliant and runaway best seller, Gone Girl.

I finally decided to pick up Gone Girl, because I wanted to read it before the movie came out and, boy, I am glad I did. I was completely absorbed in the story despite the fact that I really didn't like Nick or Amy.  I can't say I was rooting for either character as they are both kind of despicable, but I wanted answers and Flynn kept me hanging on.  Of course, I immediately felt for Amy, uprooted from her New York life, and Nick didn't even seem to really care that she was missing, but the more and more readers learn about Amy, through her diary entries, I knew that she wasn't who she was pretending to be. In fact, I was wondering if both Nick and Amy were unreliable narrators. I didn't know who to trust, which, in turn, made me completely engrossed in this tale.

It's really tough to write a review for Gone Girl, because I don't want to reveal anything, but let's just say Flynn is a master storyteller. I had such envy for the way she confuses her readers, how she makes a reader second guess himself, and then throws a wrench in any newly formed theories surrounding Amy's disappearance.  In sum, I really enjoyed Flynn's writing style and her ability to twist a story, to write unreliable narrators, and to keep readers engaged.  

This story gutted me. Seriously. I finished Gone Girl and just kept saying, "Wow."  I was blown away and it did leave a bad taste in my mouth as it's not exactly the happiest story, but if you like psychological thrillers, murder mysteries and unreliable narrators that will keep you guessing, you must pick up a copy of this book.  The only reason I didn't give it five stars was the fact that I found it as a depressing glimpse into a dysfunctional marriage.  Nonetheless, I still highly recommend it and if you haven't read it already, check out my giveaway for a $25 Visa gift card and the movie-tie-in edition of Gone Girl.



8 comments:

  1. I cannot wait to read this and watch the movie Christina!!!! I love a book that keeps me guessing and on the edge of my seat the entire time, and this is clearly that book. I'm ready for my mind to be blown for sure:)

    Also, YES TO AN OUTLANDER OBSESSION! I saw your previous post and just had to high five you. Jammmmmiiiiiiiieeeeeee :)

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    1. I can't wait for you to read this book, Jenny! I think you'll love it. I'm so glad you are obsessed with Outlander as well. I can't believe we have to wait till April for the rest of season one!! Ugh! Thanks for visiting!

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  2. "but if you like psychological thrillers, murder mysteries and unreliable narrators that will keep you guessing, you must pick up a copy of this book." - um, YES. This sounds like such an incredibly fascinating book! I love it when books keep you wondering and guessing, it's always fun to watch everything unfold and never really know how it's going to turn out. I'm going to have to try to find a copy of this soon.

    Fantastic review!

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    1. Lea, you must read this book! You will love the twists and how utterly disturbing it is. It was hard to read at certain parts, but totally worth it. Thanks for visiting!

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    1. I definitely think you should give it a try, Juju. It was disturbing, but definitely a page-turner and I am glad I read it before I see the movie. Thanks for visiting.

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  4. I do not like unreliable narrators or characters that are "despicable" which is why I didn't read Gone Girl when I had the chance. Now there are a lot of holds on the library copies since the movie is coming out so I will have to wait or I may end up watching the movie first. I might like the movie more if I don't know what is coming. I definitely want to see the movie. I like Rosamund Pike and Ben Affleck does pretty good in suspenseful drama roles.

    Great review! I am glad you were able to enjoy the book even if the story is dark and the characters unlikable.

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    1. I hear they changed the ending of the movie, so maybe you do want to read the book first. I definitely think Ben Affleck will do a great job as well as Rosamund Pike. I kept thinking of them as as the characters when I was reading Gone Girl….great casting! Thanks for visiting, Christina!

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