Jeanette "Astute Crabbist"'s Reviews > Gone Girl

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
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Mar 10, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: all-fiction, domestic-and-relationship-fiction, suspense-thriller, creepy-spooky-scary, av, four-star-fiction
Read in April, 2012

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.

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Comments (showing 1-50 of 53) (53 new)

ilovebakedgoods (Teresa) More intrigue from your comments!

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Teresa, you are the first person I thought of for this book. It comes out in June, so check your library and get in line.

Julie Christine Well now if that isn't a statement written to get the curiosity juices flowing! :) Are you talking plot spoilers or negative press? I can't imagine I'll read the book; I haven't forgiven her for "Sharp Objects", which was a hideous read for me. So, I might take a gander at a review or two!

ilovebakedgoods (Teresa) Ooooh, Julie poses a great question -- is your warning about spoilers or negative press? I'm unfamiliar with this author and her press but I'm avoiding reviews for fear of spoilers!

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Oh, goodness, I haven't seen any negative press at all about this one. Only good things. I meant spoilers. Julie, I tried to read Dark Places, which for me was hideous. I couldn't even get through 50 pages. So far this one is good. I know it will go somewhere dark, but I get the feeling she's toned it down a bit.

Jill Julie, I'm with Jeanette on this one. I did NOT love Sharper Objects and picked this one up because some reader friends highly recoed it. Finished the last 200 pages in one reading. VERY well-plotted, if you can forgive an ending that had me tearing my hair out. I was at 4.5 -- incredible page-turner, a couple of inherent flaws. Jeanette's right, though -- you DON'T want to know the plot twists!

message 7: by Petra Eggs (new)

Petra Eggs So write....

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Petra X wrote: "So write...."


ilovebakedgoods (Teresa) Not sure question marks qualify as writing, Jeanette. ;-)

message 10: by Petra Eggs (new)

Petra Eggs Teresa - did you ever have a blog on Xanga?

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Teresa, I was asking Petra what she meant.

message 12: by Petra Eggs (new)

Petra Eggs I meant write the review then. I am eagerly awaiting it and I'm never going to read the book so I don't care how many spoilers you put in. Besides you can always use the (view spoiler)

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Oh, sorry Petra. Sitting in front of the computer for me = extreme pain, so sometimes it takes me awhile. When the nerves are screaming, the mind shuts down. I do think I'll have to use a spoiler tag, because there are one or two observations I want to make that can't be part of a spoiler-free review.

message 14: by Petra Eggs (new)

Petra Eggs Pain?

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Injury-related spinal problems.

message 16: by Petra Eggs (new)

Petra Eggs I am so sorry. I had two slipped disks resulting from a mugging years ago, so I really sympathise with you.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Petra X wrote: "I am so sorry. I had two slipped disks resulting from a mugging years ago, so I really sympathise with you."

Thanks, and sorry to hear you were mugged. Such a violation!

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Chelsea wrote: "Jeanette, You've quite piqued my curiosity. I usually avoid disturbing books but I may give this a try."

Oy, Chelsea! Enter with caution. It starts out benignly enough, but look out! I've about given up on trying to guess who will like which books, though. It might be twisted in just the right configuration for you. ;-)

message 19: by Rock (new) - added it

Rock Okay, it's on my list.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Yep, Chelsea, I think there might be at least one or two books on your to-read shelf more suited to your style.;-) I may be adding some hidden spoilers to my review, but I needed to just get it done for now.

I hope you enjoy it, Rock. I'm not yet familiar with your tastes.

Erika Nerdypants Jeanette I wouldn't mind trying to read one of her books, but I've been a little scared off by many of the reviews. But this one sounds too interesting to pass up!

Kristin So, J, is there a lot of sexual stuff?

message 23: by Jill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jill Wow, I really like the beginning of your review! Sort of reminds me of Dorian Gray. It's not easy to review this book and you've done so quite well!

Charisse Count me in Jeanette :)

message 25: by Mikki (new)

Mikki You do realize that the more you *GULP* and warn us of all the potential creepiness the book holds, the more we're being drawn in!

I'm in and will not read anything else about it in order to avoid spoilers. Thanks for that advice.

Stephanie You've hooked me, it's on my to-read now!

Carol Excellent review! I'm certain you have captured many new readers based on your comments.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" @ Erika: This is a good place to start with her. I do think it's more approachable and slightly less "ooky" than her others. And with your background in psychology, it could be fun for you.

@ Kristin: Yes, there is sexual stuff, but I don't recall anything particularly offensive. If you have specific concerns, send me a pm and I'll flip through the book and refresh my memory. As long as it's not porno, I usually just glide right past the sex in novels. Not much of a spectator sport, eh?

@ Mikki: He he, we do write book reviews to get good books into the hands of the right readers. But I also feel compelled to give plenty of notice when a book is particularly disturbing. No one can say I didn't warn them. And if all the warnings make you more inclined to read much the better.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Jill wrote: "Wow, I really like the beginning of your review! Sort of reminds me of Dorian Gray. It's not easy to review this book and you've done so quite well!"

Thanks, Jill. I hadn't thought of Dorian, but you're right. Funny you should bring up Oscar Wilde. Shortly after posting this review I happened upon a quote from him that would also have been perfect for a review of this book. I shall have to save it for some other review.

Patty What isn't disturbing? You have my curiosity peaked, I am putting this book on my list of to-read.

Sheila Nice review. You capture the author's first 2 books perfectly. After those 2, I swore off this author and will not be reading this or any more. I'm not saying the books are not well written, but as you say, her subject are quite disturbing. I found myself a bit nauseous after the first 2 books. That was enough for me. The world itself is too disturbing. Like Chelsea, these books are not good entertainment for me.

ilovebakedgoods (Teresa) Petra X wrote: "Teresa - did you ever have a blog on Xanga?"

So, I'm a month behind here. Yes, Petra, I wrote a blog on Xanga! And I remember you! I was just thinking about you the other day, wondering what you've been up to. I suppose I could save the rest of this for a PM, haha.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Thank you, Sheila. As I've mentioned to others, this is the only one of her books I've been able to get through. Couldn't take the other two, as they were just too dark for me. I was so surprised to see a photo of the author and find that she's such a wholesome-looking lady. I guess I expected her face to be as twisted as her mind, lol.

Chelsea, I pretty much figured right from the start that this wasn't your "thang." But it made you mighty curious. :-)

Laura Well covered review. Her books delve into such dark territory, I thoroughly enjoyed them all, but like Jeanette, I thought Flynn would be much different than who she is. She has an incredible writingt talent as well as a devious mind!

message 35: by Caroline (new) - added it

Caroline A wonderful review. I was particularly taken with your insights in the first paragraph, the idea of using a mask then becoming that opens up so many frightening possibilities. Possibly even more disturbing than any sort of follow on exposure.

No, not a book for me - but your review was a great!

message 36: by Jeanette (last edited Jun 20, 2012 06:31PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Thank you, Caroline. You definitely get my vote for Good Reads Friend Least Likely To Enjoy This Book.

Julie Christine Okay, I'm on the bandwagon! Too many great readers have praised this book (you, Jill, KristiB, Alan Cheuse) for me to this up, though I'll probably be 1059th in the SPL queue!
I won't read your review until after I read the book, Jeanette, but what decided it for me is that you enjoyed this despite not being able to complete her first two efforts.

message 38: by Ailish (new)

Ailish Thanks for the review. I think I'll skip it.

Erika Nerdypants Hi Jeanette! I've finally gotten around to this one, and halfway through I can't say I'm disappointed. Definitely twisted, ruthless and oh so engaging. Can't wait to see how it turns out and thanks for bringing it to my attention with your excellent review :)

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" We'll see how you feel when you reach the final words. A huge number of people have complained loudly about the end, even when they loved the rest of the book. My reaction at first when I reached the end was WTF?? But then I thought about it for about 26 seconds, and realized that's really the only way it COULD end.

Arlene Walker Great review, Jeanette! I, too, wanted throw the book at someone when I read the ending. But it was a GREAT GREAT read! One of my top five books this year. Thanks!

message 42: by Mikki (new)

Mikki Jeanette wrote: "A huge number of people have complained loudly about the end, even when they loved the rest of the book. My reaction at first when I reached the end was WTF?? But then I thought about it for about 26 seconds, and realized that's really the only way it COULD end."

What a tease you are... :)

Erika Nerdypants Jeanette I completely agree that the book ended the only way it could have. But that's not to say I wasn't astonished lol. Definitely NOT what I expected!!

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Thank you, Arlene. It was a wild ride. It's fun to see your enthusiasm for it.

Mikki, That's why you love me. :D

Erika, I was astonished too, and a little sickened. But Nick, ya know. What's he gonna do?

Melissa a great review!! i trudged through the first half and almost gave up but then WOW. granted,im still reading, but she has toned down from "sharp objects" quite a bit. Flynn truly has a gift for deviousness. i really want to read "dark places" but wonder how tramatic it will be.

message 46: by Cara (new) - rated it 5 stars

Cara Lynn I think you hit the nail on the head with "truly sick relationship!"

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Cara wrote: "I think you hit the nail on the head with "truly sick relationship!""

A sick relationship that WORKS, which makes it even sicker.

Laima Love your review, Jeanette! This is exactly the kind of book I want to read.

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" Thanks, Laima. I hope you enjoy it. It's been a big hit these past few months, as I'm sure you know.

Deena @ Jeanette: I very much enjoy reading your reviews. I just began reading this book yesterday and am just a few chapters into it. Not certain as yet where it's going but I'm very intrigued, especially after reading your review. My two other reading "buddies" finished it a couple of months ago and loved it. I know they can't wait to discuss it with me but they don't want to give anything away. BTW, your dog is very handsome. English Mastiff?

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