Hey guys! I am still away in Italy (yay!) but I wanted to make sure I get this book review posted before the end of the month as part of Julie’s Book Club. So far I have read a number of books as part of the Peanut Butter Fingers book club, but this one has been my favorite. It is beautifully written and kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time. Feel free to read my review, below, but be warned- it includes spoilers!
Gone Girl is the mysterious story written by New York Time’s best-selling author, Gillian Flynn. Gillian paints the picture of an unhappy marriage- both former writers from New York who lost their jobs in the Internet boom- Nick and Amy now live along the Mississippi river in a huge empty home in the town where Nick grew up. The story begins in Nick’s perspective and shows him working in the bar he owns with his sister. Soon he gets a call from his neighbor that the front door of his home is wide open and the cat is outside. Feeling concerned, Nick arrives home to find that his wife, Amy, is missing. Then the story jumps to Amy’s perspective, through a diary entry from their life a few years ago when they were still in New York. The book continues in this manner; alternating between Nick’s experience with trying to determine what happened to his wife (while the evidence suggesting he is guilty for her disappearance begins piling up) and Amy’s detailed descriptions of her deteriorating marriage through her diary entries. By the end of Part I, the reader is basically convinced that Nick is a murderer and that he is responsible for sweet Amy’s disappearance.
Then, in Part II of the book, there is a huge switch; Amy’s diary entries stop and the reader gets a glimpse into Amy during present day. It turns out she has run away and staged her disappearance to frame her husband for murder. She made up all the diary entries, gave her husband sleeping pills and put his fingerprints all over incriminating evidence, and cut herself deeply and then cleaned it up so it would look like her husband had done it. It was a huge plot switch, and the rest of the book discussed how she accomplished everything and how Nick was avoiding being arrested for her murder.
Eventually, Nick appeals to all of Amy’s weaknesses through multiple TV interviews, and he convinces her to come back to him. In a weird twist at the end, Amy returns to their town and all suspicion around Nick vanishes. Although Amy wants everything to go “back to normal” and continue their “happy” marriage, Nick is furious that his wife tried to frame him for murder and considers her a psychopath. Amy knows Nick is furious, so she intentionally gets pregnant with his baby to keep him from doing anything rash. She knows that if he is a father, which he has always wanted and she has always avoided, he will be forced to accept Amy again and do nothing to harm her. Amy is brilliant and evil and always wins in the end.
Well, that summary was really crazy to write. The whole plot twisted and turned so much, that there is no way to write a “brief” summary that makes any sense. In fact, writing it out that way makes me realize how disappointed I was by the ending. I mean, the whole time Nick and Amy are so incredibly furious at each other that it is really hard to imagine that they just sucked it up and became husband and wife again in the end. It just seemed like an anticlimactic ending to a really dramatic story. And Amy was so evil, that I wanted to believe Nick would get back at her at the end, which didn’t happen.
Despite my grievances with the ending, I though this story was incredible. Not only was the whole plot painstakingly planned out to the last detail (except the end, maybe), but the word choice and way everything was written was phenomenal. There were so many one-liner jokes and perfect references woven throughout the narrative, that I often times found myself blown away by the perfection of the writing. I just really liked the little details and examples that were included in each scene that really helped to paint a picture in mind. The writing itself was beautiful.
I also really liked the pace of the story and this was definitely a book I didn’t want to put down. It was a page turner for sure and, though the ending wasn’t something I would have chosen, I really loved this book and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in suspense and action-packed novels. This was a great one!