Monday, May 20, 2013

Book Review: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

Title: Gone Girl
Author: Gillian Flynn
Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson
Hardcover: 465 pages
Summary: (taken from Goodreads)
Marriage can be a real killer.  
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? 

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5

I started reading this book for a book club, and I have to say, I struggled dearly. Each time I tried to read it, I quickly found myself frustrated with the characters and the narration. If it were not for the book club, I would have dropped this book into the, “maybe someday, because everyone else likes it, I will read it” pile. But because of this wonderful club that I joined, I ventured further into this “web of deceit, narcissism, and sociopath cat and mouse game,” that I really enjoyed in the end.

As I stated before, the narration was, dare I say it, a nightmare. The author, Gillian Flynn alternates between the two main characters, Nick Dunne and his wife Amy. Nick’s story is told in the present but reflects quite a bit on the past and Amy’s story is told through a diary, alternating between different years based upon the theme, not chronologically. When Amy goes missing and Nick calls the police, I started to focus on the present-day clues, but the next chapter starts with Amy talking about when she married Nick. I had a hard time staying in the present, let alone focusing on the past.

In the middle of the book, I started to become interested. The whole, “is he lying or is he telling the truth,” theme started to draw me in. The media massacred Nick and I wanted to throw the book at him. I felt sure, with his sappy narration and his wicked thoughts, that he had indeed, carried out his wife’s murder.

I found the ending quite satisfying. But because I had to endure the beginning of the book, I didn’t feel it was right to give Gone Girl a five star review. I can tell you this: I’m getting rid of this book. It’s definitely not one that I would read again.