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Gone Girl

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Who are you?
What have we done to each other?

These are the questions Nick Dunne finds himself asking on the morning of his fifth wedding anniversary when his wife Amy suddenly disappears. The police suspect Nick. Amy's friends reveal that she was afraid of him, that she kept secrets from him. He swears it isn't true. A police examination of his computer shows strange searches. He says they weren't made by him. And then there are the persistent calls on his mobile phone.

So what did happen to Nick's beautiful wife?

466 pages, Paperback

First published May 14, 2012

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About the author

Gillian Flynn

25 books81.5k followers
Gillian Flynn is an American author and television critic for Entertainment Weekly. She has so far written three novels, Sharp Objects, for which she won the 2007 Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for the best thriller; Dark Places; and her best-selling third novel Gone Girl.

Her book has received wide praise, including from authors such as Stephen King. The dark plot revolves around a serial killer in a Missouri town, and the reporter who has returned from Chicago to cover the event. Themes include dysfunctional families,violence and self-harm.

In 2007 the novel was shortlisted for the Mystery Writers of America Edgar for Best First Novel by an American Writer, Crime Writers' Association Duncan Lawrie, CWA New Blood and Ian Fleming Steel Daggers, winning in the last two categories.

Flynn, who lives in Chicago, grew up in Kansas City, Missouri. She graduated at the University of Kansas, and qualified for a Master's degree from Northwestern University.

Review Quotes:
"Gillian Flynn is the real deal, a sharp, acerbic, and compelling storyteller with a knack for the macabre."
–Stephen King

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5 stars
1,205,720 (42%)
4 stars
1,006,377 (35%)
3 stars
429,266 (15%)
2 stars
119,319 (4%)
1 star
67,615 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 145,107 reviews
Profile Image for Emily May.
1,921 reviews290k followers
November 22, 2014
3 1/2 stars.

This is going to be a hard review to write because I feel so conflicted about my final rating and just how much I actually liked this book. For one thing, I think the second half is a big improvement on the first half and, though this is my least favourite book by Ms Flynn, I can see in some ways why other reviewers see this as her strongest work.

Let me ask this question: is it possible to be objective when writing a book review? Can a book ever be objectively "good", even though some people might not enjoy it so much? To use quite an extreme example, I really struggled to read Proust's Swann's Way and can't say I enjoyed it - but that doesn't make it a bad book. Surely I cannot begin to claim that Proust is anything other than a literary genius? I wouldn't want to try.

I don't think I need to tell you that Flynn is not quite Proust. But some of the same old ideas kept popping into my head while I was reading Gone Girl because I think this is the book that most showcases Flynn's talent for writing. And for exploring the dark depths of psychology. Sharp Objects and Dark Places are wild, gritty, nasty books that pull you in, engage you and poison your mind. You don't devour them, they devour you. I read both of Flynn's previous novels in a day or two. Unlike Gone Girl, which I tried to read about five times and gave up, then when I finally came back to it, I took a week to get through it. To put it in perspective, I read War and Peace in the same time it took me to read Flynn's latest work.

But it's good, isn't it? How can I not praise a book that so cleverly pulls apart the minds of a husband and wife? In terms of writing, creativity, originality... this is her best work to date. In terms of enjoyment... I struggled a lot. Gone Girl is much slower than Flynn's first two novels, which is both a strength and a weakness. It allows for a slow, cleverly-painted picture to build up of this marriage and its many secrets, of Amy and Nick's state of mind. It is intense and brilliant. But I think it all comes down to the fact that I didn't care much about the background story of the couple's financial hardship. I think this is why I found the parts where they whine about how awful their life is - moving from a huge house in New York to a slightly smaller one in Missouri* - quite tedious.

I am used to Ms Flynn giving me the dregs of society, the lowlifes and the majorly-troubled, giving me characters with genuine reasons to complain about life. Spoilt, rich people do not pull at my heartstrings. But, objectively, this is a really great book.

*The trolls have started descending on this review because I got the house sizes mixed up - apparently the house in Missouri was bigger (how this makes a difference other than to further prove my point, I do not know). I'm very sorry if I have influenced you to read/not read this book with false house size information.

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Profile Image for Tatiana.
1,379 reviews11.7k followers
June 22, 2012
As seen on The Readventurer

I am giving Gone Girl 3 stars, but only begrudgingly. In my mind, any book that takes me 3 months and 20 different tries to read is not worth 3 (i-liked-it on Goodreads) stars, especially a book written by an author I already respect. And I am not kidding, for me the first half of Gone Girl was a PURE TORTURE to read.

Amy Dunn disappears on the day of her 5th wedding anniversary. All gradually uncovered evidence suggests that her husband, Nick, is somehow involved. Did he kill her? Was she kidnapped? What happened to Amy? One thing is clear, Nick and Amy's marriage wasn't as perfect as everybody thought.

The first part of the novel is all about the investigation into Amy's disappearance, slow unraveling of Nick's dirty secrets, reminiscing about the troubled history of Nick and Amy's marriage as told in Amy's hidden diary. I strained and strained my brain trying to understand why this chunk of Gone Girl had no appeal to me whatsoever. The only answer I have is this: I am really not into reading about rich white people's problems. You want to whine to me about your dwindling trust fund? Losing your cushy New York job? Moving south and "only" renting a mansion there? Being unhappy because you have too much free time on your hands and you are used to only work as a hobby? You want to make fun of your lowly, un-posh neighbors and their casseroles? Well, I am not interested. I'd rather read about someone not necessarily likable, but at least worthy of my empathy, not waste my time on self-centered, spoiled, pathetic people who don't know what real problems are. Granted, characters in Flynn's previous novels (Sharp Objects and Dark Places) are pretty pathetic and and at times revolting too, but I always felt some strange empathy towards them, not annoyance and boredom, like I felt reading about Amy and Nick's marriage woes.

But then second part, with its wicked twist, changed everything. The story became much more exciting, dangerous and deranged. The main characters revealed sides to them that were quite shocking and VERY entertaining. I thought the Gillian Flynn I knew before finally unleashed her talent for writing utterly unlikable and crafty women. THEN I got invested in the story, THEN I cared.

Was it too little too late though? I think it was. Something needed to be done to make Gone Girl a better read. Make it shorter? Cut out first part completely? I don't know. But because of my uneven experience with this novel I won't be able to recommend Gone Girl as readily as I did Flynn's earlier novels, even though I think this horror marriage story (it's not a true mystery, IMO) has some brilliantly written psycho goodness in it and an absolutely messed up ending that many loathed but I LOVED. I wish it didn't take so much time and patience to get to all of that...
Profile Image for Paul Bryant.
2,162 reviews9,031 followers
March 17, 2014

AMY DUNNE

I am Amy. I’m so perfect you may want to puke. It’s okay, I have that effect on everyone, even my parents. They noticed I was so perfect when I was a little girl and so they wrote some vastly popular children’s books called The Adventures of Amazing Amy. You may have been given them to read in school, and you may have puked on them. I am so self-regarding I can’t pass a mirror without congratulating it that it’s reflecting me and not somebody else. I forgot to mention that I have a perfect figure and everybody wants to be my friend. I lived in New York but because I got let go now I have to live with my husband in one of those other states. I forgot its name.

NICK DUNNE

I am Nick, husband of Amy. I am a six foot something book reading slab of pure thinking woman’s hunkaceousness. Is that a word? Hey, it is now. I got let go from my job in New York as a writer – yeah, I know. And now I got let go from the job of Amy’s husband because she’s disappeared.

P BRYANT

Why am I reading this?

OFF-STAGE VOICE

Is it because you like to read popular thrillers from time to time to curry favour with the voters of your obsessional booky website?

P BRYANT

Well, really...

AMY DUNNE

I love Nick.

NICK DUNNE

I love Amy.

AMY DUNNE

Although he can be a bastard at times.

NICK DUNNE

Although she can be a stuck-up bloodyminded princess most of the time.

AMY DUNNE

I hate Nick.

NICK DUNNE

I hate Amy.

P BRYANT

Pass me the sick bag.

NICK DUNNE

Where is Amy? Oh where oh where can she be? Did I say she like just disappeared and shit? It’s why this book is called GONE GIRL and not THE REALLY IRRITATING COUPLE.

P BRYANT

I don’t care where Amy Dunne has gone. If she’s never heard from again, that’s okay with me. But for what it’s worth, I have a few theories.

1. Kidnapped by aliens. Although you’d have thought they’d have thrown her straight back.
2. She’s had plastic surgery and is now the middle Madonna (Vogue era) in a Madonna tribute band.
3. Nick killed her, even if he says he didn’t, the liar. And ate her.
4. Amy killed Nick and is pulling off a fabulous feat of transgender impersonation until page 322 when all will be revealed. And ate him.
5. There never was an Amy. So she’s still here! (Pretty deep, that one.)
6. Just like in that Agatha Christie book, THEY ALL KILLED HER! And ate her. It wasn’t chicken in that basket.

Well, I’ll never know. But that’s okay.
Author 3 books339 followers
December 31, 2012
I'm pretty selective about new releases, but Gone Girl's opening (about a man studying his wife's skull in bed) and unique alternating POV structure promised a kind of He Said, She Said Crimes and Misdemeanors, a The Secret History with a sense of humor. I did really like the structure, along with some of the zingers, and some of the saucier images, but that's about it.

From the Kushner epigraph to the name checking of Noel Coward on page 68 to the use of Pygmalion as a verb 20 pages after that (a synonym for to tidy, apparently), Flynn signals that she aims to create that most perverse of marriages here: a literary beach read. Instead of the best of both worlds, Gone Girl is the worst of both worlds: as pretentious and unnecessarily meta and overwritten as the worst overhyped literary debut and with dialogue and characters as cartoonish and trite and exposition-anvil-filled as your average suspense hack job.

The absolute most offensive thing about Gone Girl, however, is how in love with being "dark" it is. It thinks it is so deep, so much better than say, chick lit, because it is about LIFE and DEATH and love as a prison sentence not rings and proposals and love as the solution to everything. But in staging itself, very Amy-like, so carefully in opposition to the thing it hates, it of course does not rise above chick lit, it just becomes psycho chick lit. Which may be different, I'll give it that, but it is not better.

This is not good. Do not read this.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Shelley.
360 reviews103 followers
May 19, 2016
This book is such a steaming pile of shit for so many reasons and hands down the worst book I have ever read.

There is a huge cloud of smug over Gone Girl. This was such an unpleasant read that I started taking notes of all the ridiculous parts. It also didn't help matters that I figured out the ending before page 100.

There are lots and lots of f-bombs and swearing which says a lot since I cuss like a sailor. For me to pick up on that means it's excessive and adds nothing to the story. Then there's the issue with our characters. The husband is Captain Douchebag and the wife is beyond batshit crazy. The story of a missing wife gets so ridiculous and over the top that the ending could only be equally as absurd.

Things I absolutely loathed about the book:
using The Giving Tree as a verb
redneck stereotypes like catfish gigging with dry cat food
repeated mentions of having the emotional bends
repeated mentions of characters having a vaginal smell
page 67 where "Nick got home just after four, a bulb of beer and cigarettes and fried-egg odor attached to him, a placenta of stink."
the sister's name being Go
the book's smugness.

Had I not borrowed the book, I would have stabbed the shit out of it with scissors.

If you want to read a book about a miserable married couple, read Revolutionary Road. The writing is a million times better.
Profile Image for Lisa B..
1,263 reviews6 followers
August 12, 2012
This book was just way too much fun – and I mean that in a good way. I’m taking a leisurely drive down the garden path of the story, when BAM – right in the middle it makes a u-turn and we are on the damn highway doing 90 miles an hour (commonly referred to as a plot twist). Sweet Mother of Mercy!

There is not much to say without the risk of giving up some detail that’s best left secret. Soooo many time I wanted to just take one little peek at the end to see what happens to Nick and Amy. But I didn’t. I survived the heart pounding suspense and made it to the end of a very satisfying read.

I must, must must check out more books by Ms. Flynn

See all my reviews here:

http://bookaholique.blogspot.com/
Profile Image for Liz.
639 reviews89 followers
February 10, 2017
The first person narrative meant being in the thoughts of 2 very sick people the whole book and it left me feeling yucky. The author portrayed the minds of sadistic, narcissistic sociopaths making it a very dark book. And for some reason, I actually didn't find anything that happened a surprise.
That made the story boring which may also have been because I didn't like or care about either of the unrepentant, unenlightened, and self absorbed characters. I just couldn't relate. Even getting some background on their families didn't engender any sympathy in me for them.

It is not a satisfying read because there is no hope for these characters, no redemption, no justice for those murdered. As I said: Yucky.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Nicholas Sparks.
Author 193 books222k followers
December 5, 2013
Quite simply, this is one of the best novels of the year. It's a thriller in the best tradition of Alfred Hitchcock and layered with brilliantly written characters; it's the kind of book that's nearly impossible to put down. The surprises and twists keep the reader guessing up until the final page, and my first thought upon finishing the novel was that I wanted to read it a second time.
Profile Image for reading is my hustle.
1,457 reviews279 followers
December 16, 2022



COME ON!

Everyone (EVERYONE!!) loves this hateful book? Kind of makes me weep for the future. I did not think it was clever (as many have asserted) just depraved & manipulative.

Also, if I ever read the words fucking bitch again it will be too soon.
Profile Image for Miranda Reads.
1,588 reviews153k followers
May 6, 2021
description

There’s something disturbing about recalling a warm memory and feeling utterly cold.
On the day of Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth anniversary - Amy disappears.

Without a trace.

Well...not...really without a trace.

There's a lot of weird...things associated with the disappearance.

Blood that was messily cleaned up, a suspiciously staged scene and a host of other bits of evidence that all points towards Nick Dunne.

But in the world where the murderer is always the husband...what happens when it isn't?
There's a difference between really loving someone and loving the idea of her.
Ahhh... upon a reread. I bumped it down a bit.

Knowing the twist makes everything slightly less exciting.

It was still a fun romp back into this book...but I honestly don't think I'll go in for another round.

The first time - when the BIG THING happened - my mind was blown. I was wowed. I could not get over it.

And this round? I thought I would love it more. Because now I could see all the little clues that I missed before... but they didn't do that

It was still well-written and engaging...but ehhh. I guess finding out the surprise really just didn't give me anything left to look forward to/anticipate.

Audiobook Comments
Read by Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne - together they make this audio truly memorable. Absolutely lovely reading.


YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | Snapchat @miranda_reads
Profile Image for Richard Derus.
2,855 reviews1,885 followers
January 24, 2016
***MORE MOVIE NEWS*** Gossipy sources say that Neil Patrick Harris will play Amy's creepy ex, Desi, and Tyler Perry will play Ben Affleck/Nick's scumbag lawyer. If this thing isn't a blockbuster, I'll eat my hat.

***UPDATE 7/25/2013***
Amy Dunne's role in the film offered to Rosamund Pike, whoever she might be. Good role for any actress as it's a potential star-maker.

***GONE GIRL CUPCAKES***


*****UPDATE 3/26/2013*****
See bottom of review. I think I need to re-think this oppositional review.
***UPDATE 3/31/2013***
See comment #181 below...not changing my mind about the book, remaining open to the writer's work.

Rating: 0.5* of five

The Book Report: The book description says:
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 Review: I HATED EVERYTHING ABOUT THIS BOOK FROM ITS SNARKTASTIC SMUG SNOTTY STRAIGHT PEOPLE TO ITS PLOT THAT MADE ME HOMICIDALLY FURIOUS.

I wish only the worst commercial luck for it, its movie, its author, its publisher, its publicist, its director, its producer, its screenwriter, and its legion of woman and crypto-woman fans.

Edited to add: See comment #3 below for a fuller examination of the sources of my discontent.

*************************
EXCERPT FROM AN ESSAY BY FLYNN at Powells.com
"With a mother who's the definition of toxic, and a thirteen-year-old half-sister with a finely honed bartering system for drugs, sex, control. In a small, disturbed town, in which two little girls are murdered. It's not a particularly flattering portrait of women, which is fine by me. Isn't it time to acknowledge the ugly side? I've grown quite weary of the spunky heroines, brave rape victims, soul-searching fashionistas that stock so many books. I particularly mourn the lack of female villains — good, potent female villains."

This is NOT how I saw Flynn's horrible characters. I might be wrong in my assessment of the story. I'll have to revisit this (YUCK) to be certain.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported License.
Profile Image for Becky.
1,309 reviews1,595 followers
December 8, 2014

(Original image credit: Kate Beaton)

That was my immediate reaction after finishing this book. Pretty clearly that's not how it ends. It doesn't END that way. Yet, when I tapped Shadow's screen to turn the page (Shadow's my Nook's name, FYI) - there were only acknowledgements.

And then I thought about it... I gave it just a few minutes' thought, and I decided that I thought the ending was appropriate. Fucked up? Oh my, yes. But fitting too, in a way. We do dig our own graves, don't we?

This book kind of reminded of Lemarchand's Box. Every time you try to figure it out, it draws you deeper in, and in the end, reveals the kind of depravity that seemingly knows no bounds. Ineffable.

And I kind of loved it.

I thought I had this book figured out so early. I even thought I was being clever, despite knowing, KNOWING, that I was being carefully, artfully led to these conclusions. I was creative though. I had it all figured out. All I was waiting for was the vindication when the book caught up with me.

And then WHATTHEFUCK?! The twist. Oh my. I never, never saw it coming. Despite having accidentally seen the table of contents, which kind of give it away. But, then if you know me, you know that I don't want to know anything - so I put it out of my mind. And I'm glad that I did.

The first line of the Chapter of the Twist floored me. I read it four times, and still felt sluggishly stupid. I couldn't wrap my mind around it. I had never read Gillian Flynn before, only knew that her stories were dark, thriller types. But in that one sentence, I wondered if all along I've been reading a haunting story and not even realizing it. In a way that was right, but it's just haunting in the wrong sense. Or the right one, depending on your point of view.

This book kind of... resonated. It's easy to get caught up in it - or it was for me. I could see myself, my boyfriend, my friends and their significant others, pretty much ANY relationship, in this book. And that's disturbing. Everyone changes in a relationship. Everyone. I thought, early on, "Oh, this is a story of how relationships go bad when expectations aren't met - when people change, and grow lax in their status quo relationship..."

And it was, in a way. If the When-Relationships-Go-Bad-O-Meter goes to 11. Why not just make 10 more intense? Because this one kind of situation requires it go to ELEVEN.

The thriller aspect of this book was fantastic. It's not one of those non-stop rollercoaster thrill-ride books, where every page turn is another exciting development. This was like watching the water drain out of a tub, slowly, allowing you to see, little by little,what lies under the surface. And you realize that it's recognizable but stunted and deformed, horrifying, and clearly dead inside. But you can't quite stop looking. I loved every second of it. Learning about Nick and Amy's relationship, both how it was so right, and how it went so very wrong. The characters were real, disturbingly real. Every word was expertly placed to take the reader along on this journey, and it was brilliantly done. Loved it.

The moral of this story: Make an effort. It won't kill you... ;)
Profile Image for Jeanette (Ms. Feisty).
2,179 reviews1,876 followers
August 10, 2016
Marguerite Yourcenar wrote long ago that "the mask, given time, comes to be the face itself." This can work for good or bad, but the more hideous the secrets, the more carefully that mask is constructed. So what if you discovered after five years of marriage that you'd only seen the mask, and never the real face of your spouse? Once those dark truths were revealed, could you stay married to that person?

Knowledge is power, and never more so than in an intimate relationship.
What if your spouse knew you so well that they could anticipate your behavior in any circumstance, and thereby manipulate you without your realizing it?

Gillian Flynn takes the common marital concerns about money, in-laws, and parenthood, and turns them into toxic waste in the case of Nick and Amy Dunne. Amy is revealed through her diaries, and Nick narrates his experiences as he follows the clues in the anniversary treasure hunt laid out by his wife before she disappeared. Did Nick kill Amy? A lot of people think so, but her body hasn't been found. Is Amy still alive? What was lurking beneath the surface of their marriage?

GONE GIRL is a thriller, but it's a slow burn. Flynn strings you along. She doles out just enough information to make you think you've figured things out before she hits you with another "GOTCHA!" revelation that changes everything. And she saves the biggest gotcha of all for the end, which is shocking in its subtlety. The way it ends puts the final seal on what a truly sick relationship Nick and Amy had.
The path is twisted, disturbing, and sometimes horrifying. It's also irresistible.

Sensitive readers should proceed with caution. The book does contain coarse language as well as some violence and sexual content.

Profile Image for Nataliya.
712 reviews11.3k followers
June 17, 2013
***************
Summary: I loved it while despising it, how 'bout that?
Oh dear, I'm caught between realizing that this is one of the most inconsistent plot-and-characterization-wise books I've read in a long time - as well as one of the most entertaining stay-up-all-night-to-finish books. Hmmmm.

This book unapologetically flew through the bestsellers and awards lists like a hurricane last year, being praised for its dark nature and unexpected twist and intricate plot (a.k.a. the reasons why I apparently requested it from my library many moons ago, getting to the tail end of a 3-digit queue which finally reached me by the time I forgot I signed up for this book in the first place).



The story (MAJOR SPOILERS-FREE - I'm trying to be good, guys!) is the following: Nick and Amy have been married for five years, and the marriage has been strained for a while. They used to be a rich glamorous couple in New York; now they moved to Nick's home state of Missouri having lost their jobs and most of their money. Now Nick is trying to run a bar with his twin sister while Amy apparently sulks at home.

And one day, on their anniversary, Amy vanishes without a trace, with her disappearance looking like a result of a foul play, and quite soon Nick finds himself a prime suspect as all the clues somehow point in his direction.



The story is told through alternating perspectives:

- Nick of present time (we learn quite a bit about him being a "Nice Guy" who is drop-dead gorgeous and has serious mommy-daddy issues as well as a dazzling smile, a perfectly cleft chin and quite a few hangups about women. Oh, and he really cannot stand his wife)

- and Amy through her diary entries starting seven years prior to events of present time (she is a drop-dead-gorgeous woman rich thanks to a well-known series of childhood books written by her parents and based on her - their 'Amazing Amy'. Oh, and unlike what Nick thinks of her, she appears to be - at least through her diary entries - a pathetic doormat).
This dual perspective provides an interesting example of unreliable narrators - Nick's and Amy's stories clash, and we know one of them - or both - cannot be completely true. Those parts are kinda awesome - it's like a ticking time bomb that you know is bound to explode.
While the investigation into Amy's disappearance continues, while Nick almost drowns in the mounting evidence against him, we are treated to (or perhaps subjected to?) ruminations on the nature of marriage, the nature of compromises, the view on the marital roles, the societal expectations of relationships and all that stuff that can be both thought-provoking and eyeroll-provoking at the same time.
Yes, there are some interesting thoughts on the nature of compromise in marriage. And on the danger of loving not a person but your idea of how they should be. And, later on, Amy's deconstruction of the 'Cool Girl that every man wants' stereotype - even though .
But then the second half of the book comes - and the story, at least for me, took a determined steep nosedive. No, it's not the twist (and by the time you made it to the halfway mark, the 'twist' is the only logical thing that can happen at this point - but that was fine as I don't understand the obsession with 'twists' that seems to have become the norm recently).

No, it's not the complete and utter unlikability bordering on repulsiveness of both Nick (a selfish whiny misogynistic man-child) and Amy (a ) - no, the unlikability is very well-done; I actually enjoyed that part.

No, it's a sudden lapse in characterization, the inconsistencies that pop up for the necessity of driving the plot forward - the character changes that make no sense in the frame of this story.
Amy -

And Nick -

“My gosh, Nick, why are you so wonderful to me?'
He was supposed to say: You deserve it. I love you.
But he said,'Because I feel sorry for you.'
'Why?'
'Because every morning you have to wake up and be you.”


NEWSFLASH, NICK: YOUR SNARKY PHRASE APPLIES TO YOU PERFECTLY AS WELL. THE TWO OF YOU DESERVE EACH OTHER. (Or dear, was *that* the point of this book???? O_O )

The first half of the book was fun and disturbing at the same time. with tension constantly building up, the satisfying frustration, and the lovely contrast of unreliable narrators, two nasty people that nevertheless bring up some quite interesting points. Based on it alone, I'd give this book 4 stars.

But - ughhhh - that disappointing second half - the one with inconsistent characterization, and the twists to fit the plotting, and the ending that makes you go, "And that was it? That's why I read this? Really? " - that part of the book is a 2-star at best. Lovely, lovely buildup, 'meh' and 'you're gotta be kidding me!' resolution.

What is consistent, however, is the sheer readability of this story, the page-turner quality of it, and the pretty decent writing throughout the book. How much do I wish that it ended somewhere around the 57% mark, right after the , far from the disappointing middle and end.

Altogether it's a 3-star read, full of initial promise but ending on a whimper note. But at least it's a *decent* 3-star read. It's actually enough to get me interested in other works by Gillian Flynn.
Profile Image for Gary  the Bookworm.
130 reviews125 followers
May 1, 2013
Gone Girl is astounding. It is a gripping story of the courtship and marriage of a narcissist and a sociopath. They appear to be experiencing the normal setbacks of life during our recent financial meltdown: job loss, relocation, mounting debt, family illness etc. etc. It is easy to identify with them individually, which makes it harder to know who to root for when the wife disappears on the morning of their fifth wedding anniversary and the husband becomes the prime suspect. Neither seems to be telling the whole truth, yet they both remain engaging. Each one alternates as narrator, so not only does the point-of-view shift, but so does our allegiance. Once the media circus begins we are treated to an updated The Bonfire of the Vanities with a touch of The Silence of the Lambs to keep us on edge. The climax is startling, but also, strangely inevitable. Filled with humor and insight, and enough murder and mayhem to satisfy even the most jaded reader, it is a peculiar hybrid that is hard to resist.


Here's an interesting article about the author: http://m.guardiannews.com/books/2013/...
Profile Image for emma.
1,783 reviews42.8k followers
August 8, 2022
girls can have a little being evil, as a treat.

the internet adage "i support women's rights, but more importantly, i support women's wrongs" was made for this book. when it comes to my fictional characters, the true north of my moral compass is Interesting. anyone in any story can do whatever, in my view, as long as they're interesting.

and amy dunne sure is interesting.

(nick, on the other hand...his crimes in the field of boredom should be investigated at the hague!!!)

this is an extremely fun, extremely satisfying thriller. it was just about the first of its kind (gillian flynn continued to fight for her life surrounded by identical drunk-woman-sees-something-scary girl on the train copycats, and i only put that in the past tense because WHERE IS THE FOURTH BOOK, GILLY).

the cool-girl monologue still Hits. i think it's easy to reduce its power, because a) now people say things like that all the time and b) we're all about to be showered with balloons and confetti to commemorate our millionth time hearing it, but it was wild when it first came out.

and i still stand with her!!!

even if sharp objects is just-as-good-maybe-better.

bottom line: good for her!

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book club update

calling all evil and good-for-her girlies...this is the june 2022 beautiful world book club pick!

elle and i will be reading this and rooting for amy all month long.

join the discussion here
follow on instagram here

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original review

Is there a cooler, more unique, more twisty/unpredictable/wild/interesting/creative/never-been-done-before thriller than this?

The answer is "no, somehow probably not, even though Sharp Objects is still Gillian Flynn's best, and also when is Gillian Flynn coming out with another book? I saw in a Q&A that she's switching back to novels from screenwriting/adapting/etc but that could mean anytime and I know it's good she's a slow writer because the quality is unparalleled but at the same time I'd reallyreallyreally like a new Gillian Flynn book please and thanks."

Also, if the "cool girl" passage hadn't been talked about just enough, the precise amount it deserves, I'd happy-rant about it here. That passage is so rad and was so groundbreaking for a few years ago. God, the way Gillian Flynn writes women! Please oh please another book please. Anyway, the whole long quote has been absolutely talked into the ground so go read another person write about it. Or Gillian Flynn talking about it. Or just read the passage? Or the book? It's 2:46 a.m. and I am really sticking to this point, for some reason.

Also also: I'm Team Amy. That should go without saying. The hyper-smart controller of her own fate or some sloppy, Scotch-swigging, , failed dudebro? My choice is obvious, pals.

Bottom line: This book is obviously great and absolutely every person on the face of the planet is aware of it. Writing this review is like a master class in futility.
Profile Image for karen.
3,968 reviews170k followers
June 22, 2018
Mr. Peanut
The Seducer/The Conqueror/The Discoverer
Threats

and now this.

all of them are amazing stories about a wife gone missing or murdered, and the husband's journey through grief and suspicion with a bevvy of unreliable narrators. i'm actually not some sicko who is drawn to stories of murdered women, but these happen to be exceptional books that are strikingly similar in the way they unspool, and - yeah - they all have the same central action.

every single one of them is a twisty-turny narrative that keeps the reader guessing until some sort of explosively wonderful ending ties up everything and you are all "ahhhhh". every character is unreliable, every clue is a possible red herring. every story will happily frustrate you with how slowly it doles out its answers.

i was so super-psyched to read this one, and from the very beginning, i was hooked.

when nick dunne's wife amy goes missing on the day of their fifth anniversary, the suspicion eventually comes to rest on him. the story is broken up into two threads: nick's version of events after her abduction, and amy's diary over the past few years. you will see how people in intimate relationships can sometimes have wildly different interpretations of events, a very specific internal set of values and goals in a relationship, and oh so many secrets.

and then...a bit of a twist, which even though it was something i had suspected a little bit, was handled in a way that exceeded every expectation. and i was like "yeah, yeah, yeah!!!!" and this twist just made everything so much cooler, and i could not even pause in my reading, and i wanted to turn to the end so many times to see how this puppy played itself out, but i resisted, and stayed up wayyyy past my bedtime to finish it.

and then there was an ending

i know a lot of people have difficulties with the ending. but i thought it was great.

this is very much a spoiler, so if you are ever going to read this (and you totally should because it is incredibly gripping and it is a truly great read) don't click this little button, go do something else, please.



i think the ending is perfect. perfectly chilling, perfectly mindfucking, perfectly hopelessly tragically perfect.

perfect.

come to my blog!
Profile Image for Joel.
551 reviews1,574 followers
September 2, 2012
Gillian Flynn hands you a little black box. "What's this?" you ask.

"Just open it," she says, twitching an eyebrow at you. Just a tiny movement, a gentle follicular nudge.

"Is this a puzzle box?" you ask, wary. "I keep seeing people playing with ones just like it on the train. There is a huge stack of them at Target. These aren't really my thing."

"I know, but this is a really tricky one," she says. "I want to see if you can figure it out."

Now it's a challenge. She has challenged you. Your ego is on the line.

You open the box.

And holy crap, how did she manage to fit all this in here? Because yeah, it is a pretty standard box on the outside, and even once you open in up and start messing with it, sliding the pieces around and trying to fit them into place. Oh, it's well done. Intricately carved, ornately detailed, with little embellishments that earn a wry smile, a chuckle, a grunt of admiration. But still. You can see the solution, just out of reach, but you suspect you'll have it soon.

And suddenly, the last piece clicks home, and the box opens fully, revealing an wickedly clever design that you weren't even looking for. You went in overconfident, sure you had the solution clear in your mind, sure you were smarter than the box, smarter than its creator. But that's just what she wanted you to think.

"Nicely done," you say, trying to give it back to her. "Really. Nicely done."

"Oh no," she says, shoving it back into your hands. "You aren't done yet. The really tricky part is figuring out how to put it back together. You're going to like this part best of all."

And you do. But you also can't help but notice Gillian Flynn is standing behind you the entire time. Peering over your shoulder. Making soft little satisfied sounds as she watches you muddle about with each step in the reconstruction. You can practically hear her smirking each time you make a little bit of progress. Good lord, she is all but poking you in the side as you finally fit the last few pieces into place and what lies before you on the table is, once again, a box. Only now you know what's inside, how all the tiny pieces have been sanded and molded and shaped just so, fitting together so perfectly. The box is, you have to admit, a damned impressive piece of engineering.

"You can keep that if you like," she says. Smug grin again.

Probably, you are never going to open it again. You've already solved it. But you can think of about 10 people you want to give it to, to watch them try to puzzle it out too. To put them through the same brain-teasing torture.

"That's fine too," Gillian Flynn says. "I didn't really design it to be solved more than once."

"Yeah, no," you agree. "But again: really nice job. Top-shelf craftsmanship."

You sit for a few minutes, staring at her, staring at the box.

"So, um... do you have any more of these? Different ones?"

"Actually..."

And now her smirk has spread to her eyes, because she has you now. She has you, and she knows it, and she's already reaching both hands behind her back, itching for the reveal.

"I have two."
Profile Image for TheBookSmugglers.
669 reviews1,969 followers
February 8, 2013
**WARNING: THIS REVIEW CONTAINS EXPLICIT LANGUAGE, CAPS LOCK OF RAGE, AND OCCASIONAL SPOILERS (we will let you know when spoilers kick in). You have been warned.**

Thea’s Take:

(There will be spoilers, but I’ll give you warning when they kick in.)

I started Gone Girl knowing only these things.

Gone Girl is:

A. One of the bestselling books of 2012, recipient of multiple awards from critics and readers alike, across genres and categories.
B. Gillian Flynn’s latest novel, with a rumored HUGE twist somewhere in its 500 pages.
C. Supposedly contains a razor-wire plot, and is some kind of examination of perfection, marriage, and murder in small town, Missouri.

I finished the book in less than 24 hours, compulsively turning page after page, needing to know what would happen next, who to trust, how it would all end. And, at the end, I can add one more thing to the list of things I know about this book:

D. A brilliantly written and plotted mystery, a miasma of wretchedness and hate; a book that I devoured but deeply, utterly abhorred.

I will try to do this as spoiler-free as possible. Gone Girl is the alternating point-of-view, semi-epistolary novel that tells two stories about Nick and Amy. In the first story, Amy met Nick in 2005 and falls in love with him. They get married. It is blissful. Amy is the Best Possible Wife, she’s funny, and smart, and beautiful, and RICH. Things start to go sour, however, when Nick loses his job, and then Amy loses her job and her money, and they move to Nick’s small hometown of Middle of Nowhere, MO, to take care of Nick’s dying mother (cancer) and father (Alzheimer’s). Amy is attentive. She is supportive. She still loves the idea of her husband, though she knows things are falling apart. Nick becomes abusive, hateful, hurtful. And then Amy disappears – just, gone without a trace. In this first story, Nick is Amy’s foil and tells his version of events, after Amy’s disappearance. In his narrative, Amy is brilliant and beautiful, but also controlling, resentful, and hateful. Their marriage is a sham. Amy’s disappearance puts Nick in the crosshairs of the police as the killer – and as the days after Amy’s disappearance pass, the evidence against Nick mounts.

And then there’s the second story – and therein lie spoilers. Because everything we think we know about Amy and Nick? It’s wrong. Amy is not who we think she is, and Nick is…well, ok Nick is still douchetastically pathetic. In this second story, we learn more about this toxic couple from hell, and the pit of spite and grief that is their marriage.

Like the novel’s dual plot, I’m of two minds when it comes to Gone Girl.

On the one side, I can appreciate Gillian Flynn’s skill as a writer. She creates two (ok, three) characters that are completely distinct, and she alternates these points of view with incredible deftness and ease, building a complex narrative – a complex crime – that is deeply disturbing but brilliantly executed. The big “twist” is perhaps not such a twist (you kind of expect it, or you at least know that something is going to happen, that you aren’t playing with a full deck of cards), but it’s done really, really well. The first part of the book makes you question what you know about these characters, their lives and their secrets. Everyone is unreliable, everything is questionable. This is all really fucking good.

But then, there’s the other side of Gone Girl: the badness, the utter RIDICULOUSNESS of certain developments, the hate that pervades the novel to its rotten-apple core. This, I did not like. I detested the characters, from the unparalleled pathetic misogynistic doucheparade that is Nick to the many different iterations of the “brilliant” Amy. I hated the way the story develops in the second part of the book, and I especially hated the way that it ends. I hated the pointlessness of the story – why does it need to be told? What does it accomplish? What does it say about us, as people?

And here come the **SPOILERS** because certain things need to be SAID:

Nick. I can’t really waste too much space on Nick, because he is wholly and utterly pathetic. He whines, he pretends, he is so full of incompetence and ennui and self-important horseshit. He lost his job because TEH INTERWEBS ARE EVIL. No, seriously, he’s unemployed because *whines* people don’t read REAL magazines anymore and the BLOGS are killing everything and these HACKS are destroying the printed word and he’s a REAL JOURNALIST and goddammit he’s someone IMPORTANT and why can’t anyone else understand that? He’s GORGEOUS and all the women want to jump on his disco stick, and Nick hates them all for it – women are just things to him. They are cunts, or psycho bitches, or trying too hard (these are all Nick’s words, of course). He wants to be a MAN and Amy – brilliant, beautiful, spoiled, vindictive, Amy – has stolen that from him. And then, that psycho bitch Amy fucks with Nick’s life, and Nick has to figure out how to prove his innocence because all of a sudden NICK IS THE GOOD GUY.

Which brings me to Amy. It turns out that Amy is not the eager to please doormat that she presents herself as in the first part of the book. No, she is an honest to goodness sociopath that has elaborately planned and framed her cheating pathetic loser of a husband for her death. It’s not the first time, either! She’s ruined female friends, and men that have DARED to cross her/make her unhappy (by claiming RAPE, or that people are obsessed with her, and so on and so forth). Amy is brilliant and vindictive, cruel and efficient in her mastermind scheme to bring Nick DOWN. As sick as it is, I actually liked the first twist: Amy’s edge, revealed in the second part of the book, when we find out Amy is alive and that everything she’s written in the first part of the book is a lie. But then, everything starts to unravel and Amy is made out to be not only a people-hating manipulating sociopath, but a completely incompetent one, to boot – she is suckered into a relationship with her neighbors while she’s in hiding and is robbed for all her money (she only lasts for 9 days before she’s robbed! COME ON!). She BELIEVES Nick when he goes on TV and earnestly pleads for his wife to come home, so she does it just like that. Are you fucking kidding me? THESE are the actions of the same methodical, patient mind that came up with this elaborate revenge scheme against her husband? I repeat: ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?

She then fucks, and kills, and makes her way back into her husband’s life. She then TRAPS her husband into silence and complacence with a Miracle Baby (it’s a BOY of course!) and that makes Nick stay with her forever and always.

And that is the end of Gone Girl.

There are plenty of other problems, too, but Ana has covered them all, below. Frankly, I’m exhausted, and I don’t want to waste any more time or thought on this novel.

I’m done writing now.

Ana’s Take:

(SPOILERS AHOY)

Gone Girl is one of the most ridiculous books I have ever read, one that comes with an inordinate amount of hype and disguised as a “clever”, “dark”, twisterific thriller that supposedly deals with serious shit like “when a marriage go bad”.

It follows the story of Nick and Amy’s marriage. It opens on the day of their fifth anniversary, the day when Amy goes missing. Soon – as these things go – the investigators start to focus on the husband. But is Nick guilty? Did he really kill his wife? If not, what happened to Amy?

It’s divided in three parts and in part one, the narrative alternates between Nick’s first person narrative as he deals with Amy’s disappearance and Amy’s journal. As the plot progresses, their story is slowly revealed to the reader:

Amy is a WEALTHY, BRILLIANT, BEAUTIFUL, COOL New Yorker whose parents write the Amazing Amy children stories. Nick is a BRILLIANT, HANDSOME journalist writing about pop culture for a magazine. Until Nick lost his job (because the INTERNET IS EVIL), Amy lost hers, and they need to move to Nick’s hometown in Missouri to take care of his sick mother. Their marriage was already shaky but it’s in Missouri that things start to really fall part between them. This part of the story is basically about Privileged White People’s Problems and both come across as entitled WANKERS – especially the aloof man-child Nick who, once his marriage starts to fall apart and money problems hit them, cheats on his wife with a much younger girl (his student). It would be a very familiar and trite story except for the fact that Amy’s journal entries start to show a different side of Nick: one that is increasingly abusive and scary. All of a sudden and in spite of Nick’s protestations, it is obvious that he is hiding something and he might after all, be guilty.

Then comes part 2 and the twist: Amy knew that Nick had been cheating on her and for the past year she created this elaborate plan to disappear and frame Nick for her “killing” as vengeance. As such, her diaries entries are all faked concoctions. It becomes clear then that Amy is really, a psychopath. Parts two and three deal with Amy’s attempted revenge, Nick’s realisation of how far his wife really will go, all leading to the eventual showdown between them as Nick wants her back so he can clear his name and maybe kill her or something equally unpleasant.

Gone Girl almost had me there for a while – I can vouch for how incredibly readable and engaging it is. I could not put it down and I had to find out what was going to happen to these people. I also thought that structurally speaking – with the alternating unreliable narratives – the novel was competent. It was also a success in the way that it portrayed its two deeply unpleasant, unlikeable main characters. The reader is supposed to despise these people, and loathe them I certainly did although it made for a fucking unpleasant reading experience. Plus, really, these types of “dark” characters BORE ME TO DEATH. But ok fine, this is a very personal reaction.

The thing is: because the two narratives don’t exactly fit together in part one, it is obvious that at least one of them is an unreliable narrator, possibly the two. And if a reader is used to reading epistolary novels, unreliable narrators and thrillers, it is easy to know that a twist is coming. Considering all this, is the main twist even that surprising?

That said, this is not my main point of contention with the novel. The recurring themes are what give me pause for thought.

It is possible to argue that the one of the main themes of Gone Girl is its thoughtful examination of marriage difficulties; or to question how well two people can really know each other or allow the other to know you and, unfair expectations. The problem is: the novel cannot possibly be indicative of all marriages or a heartfelt exploration of this theme because NOT EVERYBODY IS A VINDICTIVE PSYCHOPATH OR A WHINNY MAN-CHILD WITH SOCIOPATHIC TENDENCIES. Unless you know, you want argue that one can never know who one has married because maybe, just maybe your husband/wife is planning RIGHT NOW to fake-kill themselves and frame you because you didn’t wash the dishes after dinner that one time. SO you know, BE CAREFUL. This means that the book only really works on its own microcosm of darkness.

Another recurring theme throughout is the question of misogyny. Nick’s father is a deeply misogynistic character and Nick hates his father and lives under the constant fear that he too, might be misogynistic. This is really interesting in the way that it explores the difficulty in getting away from one’s upbringing. Amy on the other hand, is presented as a (kind of) feminist with her astute observations about social gender constructs by constantly calling on the bullshit of unfair social expectations around her gender. So on a cursory glance one could argue that the book is feminist. I’d argue against that. WHOLEHEARTEDLY.

What else could I argue when the only obvious feminist character turns out to be a psychopath who HATES EVERY OTHER WOMAN she knows, lies about having being raped, about being stalked and eventually “traps” her husband by becoming pregnant. When the entire story is eventually contrived to show Amy as the True Villain and Nick as the one Nice Guy (despite his aloofness, his cheating, his lies and his manipulative strike) who is not REALLY a misogynist because he doesn’t hate ALL FUCKING BITCHES, he only hates his PSYCHO BITCH wife (his choice of words, not mine, by the way). He is also the one who in the end, needs to contain the psycho bitch by staying with her and helping her bringing up their child. So then all of a sudden this passive-aggressive, liar, stunted, cheater is the HERO?

HAHAHA: NO.

And you could argue that these PEOPLE ARE HORRID and so of course, it all makes sense. But the NARRATIVE SUPPORTS ALL THIS SHITNESS by presenting every other woman in this novel as HORRIBLE PEOPLE TOO, without nuance. Well, apart from the two obviously good characters who are sympathetic TOWARD NICK: there is this one female cop who just “knows” he must be innocent and his own twin sister who is DUH OBVIOUSLY, so perfect and of course unlike any other woman. Plus, the one guy that Amy has accused of rape turns out to be innocent because really, he is just a Nice Guy and we all know that only ALPHA GUYS are rapists. Nice Guys are NEVER RAPISTS. EVER.

HAHAHA: NO.

Not to mention that the book COMPLETELY lacks internal logic. The one main thread of the book, the one point that is laboriously written through the first two parts is how Amy is incredibly smart and brilliant. She has to be, in order to manipulate, concoct and maintain all the plans she has over the course of her short life. But then get this, right? Nick concocts his own plan to make Amy change her mind and come back. And his plan consists of appearing live on TV and saying that he forgives her, that he understands who she really is and he loves her anyway. That’s his plan. AND IT WORKS. Amy – psychopath, brilliant Amy – has a change of heart almost as immediately as she watches his interview. And that’s because according to Nick, Amy lacks a “bullshit detector”. BUT the first half of the book was all about setting up and making sure we understood how much of a bullshit detector Amy actually had.

So which one is it? Either she is a brilliant psychopath or a gullible idiot. SHE CAN NOT BE BOTH, BOOK.

And I am going to nitpick too: Nick is in his early thirties buy he sounds fucking ancient. Like the whole whinny “the internet killed my career” thing when he is at the right age to actually know how to take advantage of the Internet? Please.

In summation: I devoured Gone Girl but I fucking hated it.
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,568 reviews55.5k followers
July 29, 2021
Gone girl: a novel, Gillian Flynn

The first part of the novel centers on Nick Dunne and his wife Amy's marriage. Its point of view alternates between that of Nick and Amy, whose perspectives on their marriage are very different.

For example, Nick describes the couple's relationship in the present day, while Amy's diary entries depict their relationship in the past. When Nick and Amy both lose their jobs in New York City, they relocate to Nick's hometown in North Carthage, Missouri, to help take care of Nick's sick mother.

This causes their marriage to take a turn: Amy loved their life in New York, hates living in the Midwest, and soon begins to resent Nick for making her move to his hometown.

On their wedding anniversary, Amy disappears without a trace, and Nick eventually becomes a suspect in her disappearance.

Among other reasons, his lack of emotion about Amy's disappearance and the discovery that Amy was pregnant when she went missing lead both the police and the public to believe that Nick may have murdered his wife.

In the second half of the book, the reader learns that the main characters are unreliable narrators and that the reader is not being given all of the information.

Nick is revealed to have been cheating on his wife, and Amy is revealed to be alive and in hiding and trying to frame Nick for her "death" as revenge for his perceived wrongs against her.

Her pregnancy and her diary entries are revealed to be fake; Amy fabricated them in order to incriminate Nick further.

However, her plan is foiled when she is robbed at the motel she is hiding in. Desperate, she seeks help from her ex-boyfriend Desi Collings, who agrees to hide her in his lake house but soon becomes possessive, causing Amy to feel trapped. ...

تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز بیست و نهم ماه جولای سال 2016میلادی

عنوان: دختر گمشده؛ اثر: گیلیان فیلین؛ مترجم آرش خیروی؛ مشخصات نشر تهران، انتشارات میلکان، 1393، در 550ص، شابک 9786007443255؛ موضوع: داستانهای نویسندگان ایالات متحده آمریکا - سده 21م

دختر گمشده؛ رمانی با ژانری نو، و دلهره‌ آور، اثر «گیلیان فلین» است؛ که نخستین بار در سال 2012میلادی منتشر شده است؛ فیلم «دختر گم‌شده» نیز، به کارگردانی «دیوید فینچر»؛ اقتباسی از همین رمان است؛ که در سال 2014میلادی ساخته شده است؛

هر فصل از رمان، از نگاه یکی از دو شخصیت («نیک دان» یا «ایمی دان») بازگویی میشود؛ خوانشگر هماره میخواهد، تا حقایق برایش فاش شوند؛ حقایقی که از همان صبح روز پنجمین سالگرد ازدواج «نیک دان» و «ایمی» آغاز؛ و هماره خوانشگر را، به دنبال واژه های نویسنده، میدواند، تا بلکه خوانشگر نیز بداند و بداند که میداند؛ نویسنده، نخست «ایمی» همسر «دان» را، ناپدید میکند، تا رسانه ها جنجال کنند، و «نیک» را قاتل همسر، در گزارش خویش بدانند؛ چرا؟ چون همین زن و شوهر، در دوران رکود اقتصادی، کار و شغل خویش از دست داده اند؛ و زندگی آنها آشفته بازاری بوده، و ...؛ داستان بسیار پرکشش است؛

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 24/05/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 06/05/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for La Petite Américaine.
207 reviews1,417 followers
February 11, 2013
You know those books that are a complete chore to read? The ones you'll do anything -- playing Words with Friends, cleaning the house, scrubbing toilets -- to avoid reading? Then a few weeks go by and you've gotten dumber, because in doing your damnedest to avoid reading said book, menial tasks have turned your brain to mush?

Yeah.

Gone Girl has gone to my "sucked" shelf.

Look. If I want to hear about bored, unhappily married people, I'll talk to my married friends or delve into something by a capable writer.
If I want horror and suspense, I'll drop all pretenses and hit up the master.

I can't deal with a slow-moving plot about a neurotic suburban housewife and her (justifiably) distant husband. I can't deal with lines like "She blew more smoke toward me, a lazy game of cancer catch," or "When I think of my wife, I always think of her head....It was what the Victorians would call a finely-shaped head." (Hey, Gillian, next time you write from a male point of view, try to remember that guys notice T&A and not the shape of a woman's head. GAHHHHHD!)

Then there's the issue with the character named Margo, or Go for short. What a pain in the ass when sentences start with her name. It seems like a verb, then you go on to realize that it's the chick with the annoying name. i.e., "Go walked across the bar," "Go loves to read," "Go was now pantomiming dick-slapping my wife." Right.

I just couldn't take it any more.

SUCKED.
Profile Image for Susan.
98 reviews40 followers
October 2, 2012
Twisty like a pretzel, dark like unadulterated chocolate, and as compelling as a twisted car wreck, this thriller delivers! On their fifth anniversary, Nick and Amy's marriage implodes when Amy goes missing and Nick is hardly as distraught as he ought to be. Too much plot summary would detract from the pleasure of reading the book for yourself. Suffice it to say, this is one psychological mind bender accompanied by witty, incisive, laser beam writing; if you like that type of thriller, this one is a bomb. Gillian Flynn has launched herself into the big league. I loved it, though it might not be for everybody.
Profile Image for Emma Giordano.
317 reviews116k followers
November 28, 2016
This book was such a mindfuck and I've never read anything like it before.
Profile Image for Federico DN.
260 reviews497 followers
February 3, 2023
She can do everything, she can be anyone. She is simply... Amazing.

In this novel we learn the story of "Amazing Amy". An extraordinary woman that for unknown reasons disappears from her cherished cozy home. An open door and a big mess is the only thing that is left in her place. Nick, her beloved and dearest husband, will be left perplexed with doubt about if it is a kidnapping, the scene of a terrible crime... or something else.

Several similarities with "The Girl on the Train" by Paula Hawkins. The diachronic style, the constant coming and going between the views of the different characters, and, to a certain extent, even the theme. And, like the aforementioned book, as gripping as few others. It creates that delicious addiction of wanting to know what is going to happen next, and several surprises that guarantee more than one plot twist. Highly recommendable.

Amy is certainly a character that one can hardly ever forget in a lifetime. She is in many ways, for very different reasons, plainly and simply: "Amazing". Disturbingly Amazing.

**** The movie is an excellent adaptation of the book, capturing much of its spirit. Most of the praising goes to the brilliant performance of Rosamund Pike, that got almost to the letter the "Amazing Amy" personality. Still, even so, the book felt superior. Certain differences, although minuscule, were noticed. But in the world of book-to-film adaptations, Gone Girl holds a very prestigious place. And very well deserved.

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PERSONAL NOTE :
[2012] [415p] [Thriller] [Highly Recommendable]
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Puede hacer todo, puede ser cualquiera. Ella es simplemente... Asombrosa.

En esta novela conocemos la historia de "Asombrosa Amy". Una extraordinaria mujer que por razones desconocidas desaparece de su muy querido y acogedor hogar. Una puerta abierta y un gran desorden es lo único que queda en su lugar. Nick, su amado y preciado esposo, quedará perplejo ante la duda de si trata de un secuestro, la escena de algún terrible crimen... o algo más.

Varias semejanzas con "La chica del tren" de Paula Hawkins. El estilo diacrónico, el constante ir y venir entre las vidas de los distintos personajes, y en cierta medida hasta la temática. Y al igual que el mencionado libro, es atrapante como pocos. Genera esa deliciosa adicción de querer saber que es lo va a suceder después y varias sorpresas que aseguran darte vuelta la trama más de una vez. Muy recomendable.

Amy es ciertamente un personaje que probablemente uno jamás en la vida puede llegar a olvidar. Es de varias formas, por muy diversas razones, lisa y llanamente: "Asombrosa". Perturbadoramente Asombrosa.

**** La película es una excelente adaptación del libro, capturando mucho de su espíritu. Los laureles principalmente se los lleva la brillante actuación de Rosamund Pike, que capturó casi a la letra la personalidad de "Asombrosa Amy". Por supuesto, aún así el libro se sintió superior. Ciertas diferencias, aunque minúsculas, se notaron. Pero dentro del mundo de las adaptaciones de libros llevados al cine, Gone Girl ocupa un lugar prestigiado. Y muy bien merecido.

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NOTA PERSONAL :
[2012] [415p] [Thriller] [Altamente Recomendable]
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Profile Image for Glenn Russell.
1,326 reviews11.6k followers
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April 7, 2022



Hail to the Hogarth Shakespeare series, where the Bard's works are retold by a number of today's acclaimed novelists. Among those published within the series to date: Margaret Atwood - The Tempest, Jo Nesbø - Macbeth and Anne Tyler - The Taming of the Shrew. Gillian Flynn is on the docket for Hamlet, my absolute favorite Shakespeare play. In order to familiarize myself with Ms. Flynn's writing before I dive into her rendition of Hamlet, I had the pleasure of reading Gone Girl.

Gone Girl is one of the most popular novels here on Goodreads (nearly 2 million ratings; over 125,000 reviews) and the 2014 film starring Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike achieved blockbuster status. Although nearly everyone acknowledges Gone Girl is a page-turner, reviews have been mixed and extreme, judging the book as either very bad or very good.

Leading the list for Gone Girl as bad book we have unlikable, superficial characters, an unending sewer of psycho babble and parodies of the writing style (there's even a parody book - Gone Bitch). Addressing one aspect of the negativity, Gillian Flynn said: "If you are someone who reads books to feel like you have a friend on the page, my book is not going to be the book for you."

A sampling of Gone Girl as good book features: stunning chiller, astounding twists, irresistible characters. Furthermore, Gone Girl was a New York Times Book of the Year. And in her New York Times book review, Janet Maslin raved: "Gone Girl is Ms. Flynn's dazzling breakthrough. It is wily, mercurial, subtly layered and populated by characters so well imagined that they're hard to part with." Likewise, Alison Flood in The Guardian: "Flynn, an extraordinarily good writer, plays her readers with the finesse and delicacy of an expert angler...Thriller of the year. An absolute must read."

Fanfare with toy trumpets and kazoos: you can count me among those judging Gone Girl a very good novel. Although, I must admit, I am partial when novels are written with multiple narrators, or, what I refer to as rotating first person. Gillian Flynn's novel has two alternating narrators: husband Nick and wife Amy. I'm also fond of narrators who are unreliable and thus infuse the story with great suspense. Seen in this way, on a scale of ten, Gone Girl rates a ten.

And that's just for starters. Other aspects I especially enjoyed: 1) the sophisticated layering of character for both Amy and Nick, 2) penetrating insights on the current state of American class, culture and society, and 3) the ways in which the novel incorporates the pervasive influence of mass media. Turning to these one at a time:

AMY ELLIOTT DUNNE
In the very first chapters we hear the voice of Amy but this turns out to be only Diary Amy. Deeper into the story we come across Avenging Amy, Ozark Amy, Nearly True Amy, layer after layer. Amy is exceedingly bright, degrees from both Harvard and Yale where she studied psychology. She was exploited as a child and adolescent, her mother and father made rich via publishing Amazing Amy books that tracked her growing up year by year. Family, friends and society in general expected Amy to be as perfect as her fictional twin. Bad news, folks – she’s only human. Ironically, her soulmate, Nick, whom she married when she was 33, also has a twin, twin sister Margo.

NICK DUNNE
Missouri boy come to New York to pursue his career as magazine journalist. Nick marries Amy when he’s 29 and a few years thereafter loses his job. Hearing from his sister Margo that their mother is sick and needs help, he decides to move back with Amy. Nick’s parents divorced and his abiding memory as a boy is of his women-hating father. Fun fact: Nick tells us Amy read Haruki Murakami’s The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle on a Fiji beach during their honeymoon. Too bad Nick didn’t take more interest in Amy's novel: it features a wife who runs away! One of the more appealing parts of the story is watching Nick jolted into the need to transform.

CLASS, CULTURE, SOCIETY
It’s the clash of high life New York City versus unemployed, dopesick, rundown small town Middle America. NYC born and bred Amy’s first words on entering their house in an ugly, deserted development: “Should I remove my soul before I come inside?” And Nick admits that Amy considered being forced to reside in Zeroville (my name for Nick’s sour home town of Carthage) as “a punishing whim on my part, a nasty, selfish twist of the knife.”

The once thriving mall is shut down and is now occupied by an army of homeless, hopeless, unemployed men and women addicted to drugs such as oxycontin. Nick’s reflection during his search of the mall one night: “Carthage had a bigger drug epidemic that I ever knew: The cops had been here just yesterday, and already the druggies had resettled, like determined flies. As we made our way through the piles of humans, an obese woman shushed up to us on an electric scooter. Her face was pimply and wet with sweat, her teeth catlike.”

Amy’s father Rand tells Nick: “When Amy talked about moving back here, back along the Ole Mississippi River, with you, I pictured . . . green, farmland, apple trees, and those great old red barns. I have to tell you, it’s really quite ugly here. I can’t think of a single thing of beauty in this whole town.”

Ugly, ugly, ugly – the more I read, the more I was surprised Amy lasted two whole years before her exit. The main story, of course, is Amy and Nick, but Gone Girl also makes a bold statement on the sorry condition of American economics and society. In this way, similar to Colin Harrison’s You Belong To Me, Gillian Flynn’s novel could be used as a supplemental text for a course in sociology.

MASS MEDIA
Following Nick’s reporting Amy’s disappearance, a barrage of reporters, cameras and microphones converge on the scene. Instantly, Nick and everyone else involved in the case, including the police, not only have a flesh-and-blood identity but also a public media identity – and, in many way, the media identity is of primary importance.

Initially Nick comes off as an insensitive, unfeeling lout. When more facts in the case surface, the media portray him as a murderer who has been unfaithful to his wife. Realizing he could face serious jail time and even the death sentence, Nick hires savvy Big Apple lawyer Tanner Bolt.

As Tanner explains, “The media has saturated the legal environment. With the Internet, Facebook, YouTube, there’s no such thing as an unbiased jury anymore. . . . So why not use it – control the story.” Why not, indeed. With the help of Tanner’s coaching and leaning on his past experience as a journalist, the TV audience will be treated to a new Nick Dunne.

And Nick can see what happens when someone doesn’t have the capacity to work the media to their own advantage. Jacqueline Collins, mother of the man cast as the bad guy, doesn’t stand a chance insisting on her son’s innocence when interviewed on national TV. “She always started off steady, but her mother’s love worked against her. She soon came across as a grieving woman desperate to believe the best of her son, and the more the hosts pitied her, the more she snapped and snarled, and the more unsympathetic she became. She got written off quickly.”

Meanwhile, three guesses who can REALLY work the media to their advantage. Make that one guess – Amy. Brilliant, clever, beautiful, exceptionally well-spoken, forever camera ready and, oh so manipulative, by using the media Amy has finally outpaced fictional Amazing Amy in being truly amazing.

AMY ELLIOTT DUNNE, THE LAST WORD
Amy gets the last word in Gone Girl and she gets the last word here.

It is now 2018 and Amy and Nick are back living on the top floor of a spanking new Brooklyn condo overlooking the Manhattan skyline. Of course they are wealthy following the return of Amy's trust fund money and the successful launch of her book Amazing. And more good news: not only do they have a bright, lively little boy but also an even brighter little girl. Amy continues to write. As does Nick, who has published his first novel, a love story which is now on the best seller list. Nick wasn't surprised - after all, he has a brilliant, amazing editor.

Does this sound like the improbable combination of Lady Macbeth and a happily ever after fairy tale? You bet it does. Thank you, Gillian!






"I have a book deal: I am officially in control of our story. It feels wonderfully symbolic. Isn't that what every marriage is, anyway? Just a lengthy game of he-said, she-said? Well, she is saying, and the world will listen, and Nick will have to smile and agree. I will write him the way I want him to be: romantic and thoughtful and very very repentant - about the credit cards and the purchases and the woodshed. If I can't get him to say it out loud, he'll say it in my book. Then he'll come on tour with me and smile and smile." - Gillian Flynn, Gone Girl
Profile Image for Anne.
3,786 reviews69k followers
October 8, 2021
Ah, marriage.

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The story of Nick and Amy is a tale that is as old as time.
A song as old as rhyme, etc. etc. etc..
Two crazy, adorable kids meet & fall into a passionate love affair.

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Then, of course, they enter into holy matrimony.

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But once that new car smell wears off?
Some rather interesting things happen.

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I think it's so nice when books show us that couples can work out their relationship problems in a healthy way.
That ending.
So tender. So sweet.

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So. Yeah. This was a weird little story.
Of course, I already knew the main spoiler going in, but it was still a fun audiobook and both narrators were great.
I think the Hubs & I should rent the movie on our next date night.
Because nothing says romance like putting the fear of God in your spouse, right?
Profile Image for Kristin (KC).
251 reviews25.1k followers
April 3, 2017
*5 Stars!*

While it feels a bit off referring to this deeply deranged book as a "fun read", that's exactly what I'm gonna call it. Because for the time spent reading, this book entirely owned me. My focus, my world, my thoughts, were swept away by these insanely unrivaled characters and the darkness of their story. And the suspense of it all left me in a constant state of guessing — straight to its twisted end.

Gone Girl is not a happy, feel-good love story with just a few bumps in an otherwise silky road. Nope. This road is paved in despair and carries you on an intense journey of whodunit's, how's, and why's.

The solemn tone is very often lightened with humor, slapping on a thick coat of irony along the way...Yes, this IS all very sick, but the snarky narration has me laughing anyway.

The characters are complex and (being generous here) barely likable, but I did feel tiny traces of empathy and sadness for them.

However, this book isn't about falling in love with its characters, but simply gaining an addictive interest in their story - a haunting story that will confuse you, sadden you, sicken you, surprise you, and gravely entertain you in the process.

It's rich in suspense and tight in execution. No holes. No gaps. Nothing overlooked. Just when you think you've figured out where the plot is heading, you'll find yourself guessing again. Even the elements I had figured out were drastically more intense than I'd imagined.

And I must gush over the writing because that's honestly what held me captive most: Witty, intelligent, insightful, descriptive, original. Long sentences, with choppy thoughts, and it all fit perfectly. I felt the anxiety of this story. I lived it. And I *saw* it because this author?? GENUIS at painting a mental picture.

So here's a very spoiler-free gist of the story ...
After five years of what has now become a shaky marriage, Nick's wife goes missing leaving Nick the prime suspect in her sudden disappearance. Nick is a man of little outward emotion who eats his pain as to not let others see his imperfections. He's a chameleon of a man who would sooner suffocate himself with lies before breathing a single truth that might condemn him. But he soon finds himself condemned anyway, as the truths slowly begin to unravel.

This story is told in dual perspectives that oscillate between past and present. I loved the structure; I loved the delivery, and I loved not knowing what was hiding around each corner.

I realize there is some controversy over this story's ending, and while I won't reveal any details, I will say that I found it to be neither a disappointment nor a knock-your-socks-off grand finale. Instead, I found it a rather fitting scenario that just made sense in relation to the overall tone of the story.

If you're wondering why I thought the ending was so apt, here's my reasoning: (Although only click if you've read the book. *MAJOR SPOILER*)...

This was my first Gillian Flynn read, and I anxiously look forward to more from this author!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic Book Stats:
▪ Genre/Category: Mystery/Adult
▪ Graphic Scenes: Mild
▪ Romance: Not a romance
▪ Characters: Well fleshed out and vivid.
▪ Plot: A suspenseful search for a man's missing wife with tons of twists.
▪ Writing: Impeccable. Humorous. Witty. Captivating.
▪ POV: 1st person. Dual perspectives.
▪ Cliffhanger: None/Standalone
▪ HEA?



Profile Image for Trudi.
615 reviews1,393 followers
July 19, 2012

I've been completely fangirling over Gillian Flynn since her debut Sharp Objects six years ago. It remains one of my all-time-favorites, along with Flynn's sophomore novel Dark Places. No one writes the inner workings of warped and damaged human psychology better than this woman. With complete conviction I place her in the same category alongside the likes of Flannery O'Connor and Shirley Jackson. Flynn has a devilish, uncanny flair for creating memorable characters and twisty plots that drive down unexpected roads shrouded in fog the end of which you cannot see until you're smack upon it.

So you can bet I've been anxiously awaiting this latest release with agonized, bated breath. Despite missing some of the texture and nuances of her first two books, this time out Flynn has offered up a bonafide page turner of the sordid, sensationalist kind that makes summer reading oh-so-sweet. Trust me when I say, if you're only going to take one book to the beach or cottage this summer, it's gotta be Gone Girl.

I'm also going to encourage you to avoid all reviews (except this one, haha!) before you pick this up. Even more than her other novels, Gone Girl is so easy to spoil. Which is why I'm going to say very little about the actual inner workings of the story itself. And if I feel the need to get even close to doing that, be rest assured it will be put behind a spoiler tag.

A list of lovables:

Narrative voice: What makes Gone Girl such a compulsive read is the alternating points of view. Dueling voices in any novel can result in epic fail, especially when the voices are so similar as to be indistinguishable. If you're going to tell the story from different points of view, you better make sure the points of view are actually...different. I don't think I've ever seen alternating voices handled so effectively as they are here with husband Nick and wife Amy. As you read, you begin to wonder if either of these narrators are in the least reliable, if you're perhaps not getting full disclosure after all. I absolutely adored that pernicious doubt and shifting sympathies. It's like watching nature programs that can be shot to make you cheer for the wolf pack one week, and for the moose the week after.

Is this manipulative? You bet it is! But trust me, being manipulated by a master like Flynn is sheer delight.

Media as judge, jury and executioner: C'mon, we all know it don't we? Murder suspects of every sort and circumstance are tried first in the media and found guilty or innocent before the case ever makes it to trial. Before an arrest is even made, pundits, "news" anchors and bloggers put forth his or her theories and "insights" decrying yay or nay. You've seen Nancy Grace at work, haven't you? Flynn does a wonderful job here of dissecting our at times unhealthy, obsessive appetite for the sordid. How our voracious consumption of mass media provokes sympathy or outrage, how easily we are influenced to see a person as a saint or a devil. Innocent until proven guilty? Not so much these days. And good luck finding an impartial jury. Change of venue? With the meteoric rise of social media, you would have to go all the way to Mars in some instances in order to enlist "untainted" jurors.

The only thing humans do with more abandon and conviction than fall in love is fall out of love: Love is grand, marriage can be a beautiful, wonderful thing...except when it isn't. The rise and fall of any relationship carries within it the potential to be staggering in scope and severity. What we once adored about one another, we now loathe. What we lingered over and savored to the last sub-atomic particle, we now want to obliterate from our awareness, pull an eternal sunshine of the spotless mind if you please. Oh yeah, I think we've all been there. More than anything, Flynn is putting gender relations and the perils of romance under a microscope, and her scrutiny doesn't miss a thing. It's tawdry, and titillating, and twisted, and didn't I already say the perfect effing read for this summer??? You bet.

The only fly in the ointment here is that Flynn manages heaping amounts of sensational, but only moderate traces of substance. This novel's engine runs on the nitroglycerin of shocking twists and the suspension of disbelief. Flynn largely ignores the gritty demands of realism here as they will only act as sugar in the gasoline, binding and stalling a story that has taken flight like a jet-fueled rocket bound for stratospheric heights. When you are strapped on to that rocket, you won't be worrying about realism though. Or subtleties. You'll be banging on the table like Harry's Sally screaming - yes! yes! oh YES!

Except in this case, you'll mean it. I didn't have to fake a single thing :)

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