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Sharp Objects
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Archive - Group Reads > Sharp Objects - June 2013

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message 1: by Leigh (new) - added it

Leigh | 6313 comments June Group Read #3

Our group read lead for Sharp Objects is Kelly. Look forward to an intro to the books and the author, and to a cracking discussion.

As usual please not we discuss all aspects of the books we read - the plots, the characters, the settings and so on - on our discussions threads. Hence the discussion threads will contain spoilers from the start. if you haven't finished the book yet be careful not to read others' posts until the end.

If you haven't picked form the June reads list here is the Goodreads summary:

WICKED above her hipbone, GIRL across her heart
Words are like a road map to reporter Camille Preaker’s troubled past. Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, Camille’s first assignment from the second-rate daily paper where she works brings her reluctantly back to her hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls.

NASTY on her kneecap, BABYDOLL on her leg
Since she left town eight years ago, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows: a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed again in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille is haunted by the childhood tragedy she has spent her whole life trying to cut from her memory.

HARMFUL on her wrist, WHORE on her ankle
As Camille works to uncover the truth about these violent crimes, she finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Clues keep leading to dead ends, forcing Camille to unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past to get at the story. Dogged by her own demons, Camille will have to confront what happened to her years before if she wants to survive this homecoming.



Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments I read this book a few months ago and don't have a fond opinion of it. Here's my take:

Thanks to readingitforward.com, SHARP OBJECTS is the second book by Gillian Flynn that I've read. On the basis of having now read both this book and GONE GIRL, it appears to me that Flynn likes deeply flawed characters with psychological problems who have dysfunctional families. In SHARP OBJECTS, it seems EVERY character has flaws and at least one phychological problem. But the main character, Camille Preaker, beats them all.

Preaker comes back to the small town where she grew up to report on a double murder there for the Chicago newspaper she works for. It seems everything she does involves alcohol. She drinks so much that it is unbelievable she can accomplish her investigative reporting duties. But investigate she does, always one step behind her policeman friend, Richard. And boy does she drink all the while!

But the drinking isn't as bad as the cutting, I guess.

While visiting her home town, Preaker stays with her mother, stepfather, and 13-year-old half sister. Here lies SHARP OBJECT's greatest mystery. It is Flynn's trick to make you feel undecided about these people throughout the book. Although it's easy to see they're dysfunctional, you won't know their true selves until the end. Please don't let any other book review tell you more about them and spoil that for you.

That's as close to story summary as you'll get from me. I won't spoil it for you, as so many book reviews on the Internet have done to me.


message 3: by Joy (new)

Joy | 16 comments Because I read Gone Girl and did not care for it I have elected not to read this book by the same author.

Life is too short to spend my time reading bad books.


Andrea Corley | 1300 comments I seemed to be in the minority but I enjoyed this more than Dark Places! A lot of people have complained about the ending but I didn't mind it so bad!


message 5: by Dipanjan (new)

Dipanjan | 50 comments @ Andrea - Did you know that minorities get ALL the advantages in a democracy? Come now, lets have a Champagne and make the Minority Report.


Tammy (prouxt) | 10 comments I have enjoyed each of Flynn's books so far...could NOT read them back to back though lol.


Andrea Corley | 1300 comments HAHA! Thanks Dipanjan! I really did like the book though! I think my qualm with Dark Places was I didn't like any of the characters so it took away from me liking the book!

At least some of the characters in this book were likable!


Andrea Corley | 1300 comments HAHA! Thanks Dipanjan! I really did like the book though! I think my qualm with Dark Places was I didn't like any of the characters so it took away from me liking the book!

At least some of the characters in this book were likable!


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments Andrea wrote: "At least some of the characters in this book were likable..."

WHO? It's been several months since I read this, but I can't think of any character I liked. Even those who didn't do bad things were either wimps or detestable.


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments If anyone liked this book, please tell me why. I can think of only one thing I liked about it.


Christine Beth wrote: "If anyone liked this book, please tell me why. I can think of only one thing I liked about it."

I loved the book! I've read all 3 of her books, and I feel Gillian Flynn is an amazing writer. While her stories and characters may be a bit "gritty", she does an amazing job of pulling me in to a world I am otherwise quite sheltered from. Her writing is vivid, her characters are so well developed, and with each book, she throws in at least one twist that manages to totally shock me! I can't ask for more than that! My favorite story was Dark Places, and I feel Gone Girl was her best written novel of all. I can't wait for more from Gillian Flynn, really!


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments Christine wrote: "Beth wrote: "If anyone liked this book, please tell me why. I can think of only one thing I liked about it."

I loved the book! I've read all 3 of her books, and I feel Gillian Flynn is an amazing..."


I agree about DARK PLACES and GONE GIRL. But I found all the drinking in SHARP OBJECTS to be monotonous. Plus, I thought it was odd that everyone but Camille stayed in their same little town where they went to high school where they had the same friends in the same petty groups.


Debsp | 6 comments I actually liked "Sharp Objects" better than "Gone Girl". The ending in GG was just too far fetched for me. I liked "Sharp Objects" because it was uncomfortable. And every once and awhile I like to read outside my comfort zone. Yes the characters are not likeable, and they ALL appear to have some sort of issue but it makes them more real to me.


message 14: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten  (kmcripn) | 6438 comments My copy of Sharp Object finally arrived on my Overdrive account. So, I'll be starting today! Yippee!!


Megan (penkevi2) I just finished this book recently and loved it! I can't decide which of her books is my favorite. They all are just so, I don't know, gritty almost, in a good way!


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments Megan wrote: "I just finished this book recently and loved it! I can't decide which of her books is my favorite. They all are just so, I don't know, gritty almost, in a good way!"

I agree that

Dark Places and Sharp Objects are gritty. Great adjective for those two. However, I disagree that SHARP OBJECTS was gritty in a good way, although you're right about DARK PLACES.


Lorraine (saanichlori) | 3468 comments I listened to Sharp Objects on my iPod and found it compelling as well as disturbing. The narrator did a good job of reading the book, and I could "see" the characters clearly. I thought it was a fascinating look into the sordid lives of these people. I gave it 4 stars.


Megan (penkevi2) Beth wrote: "Megan wrote: "I just finished this book recently and loved it! I can't decide which of her books is my favorite. They all are just so, I don't know, gritty almost, in a good way!"

I agree that

D..."


I guess I meant "in a good way" as I enjoyed it. I did enjoy Dark Places better. I think I just did not enjoy the main character in Sharp Objects. I know in all her books you don't really love any of the characters but like you said in your previous comment there was too drinking that just didn't add to the plot. I could definitely tell that this was her first novel. Not that I didn't enjoy it, but she definitely grew as a writer.


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments Megan wrote: "drinking that just didn't add to the plot..."

Exactly! The drinking, which was described on just about every page of the book, didn't add to the plot. It was too ridiculous to think she could solve her family mystery and drink as much as she did. She had to be like a zombie from all that booze.


Megan (penkevi2) Beth wrote: "Megan wrote: "drinking that just didn't add to the plot..."

Exactly! The drinking, which was described on just about every page of the book, didn't add to the plot. It was too ridiculous to think ..."


Yes! And why did we need to know that her mother's favorite drink was an Amaretto Sour which she drank probably once every chapter? It didn't add to the book at all and honestly just got annoying. Haha maybe that's why it took the whole book for her to figure it out cause of all the booze!


message 21: by Jean (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jean Krier | 7 comments I read this book quite a while ago and it's my favorite of all her books. I loved the character and her flaws and rooted for her. I thought this book and Dark Places were much better than Gone Girl which I didn't like at all.


message 22: by Kelly (new) - added it

Kelly (marquis784) | 35 comments I just started this novel. Since I enjoyed the darkness and mystery of "Gone Girl" I think I will enjoy this as well. I find dark novels with unlikeable characters a nice break from the novels I normally read.


Megan (penkevi2) Kelly wrote: "I just started this novel. Since I enjoyed the darkness and mystery of "Gone Girl" I think I will enjoy this as well. I find dark novels with unlikeable characters a nice break from the novels I n..."

I know what you mean it's interesting when you read a book and don't like any of the characters. In a way I think that makes her books seem more, realistic, I guess in the way that everyone has flaws and no one is perfect. Even though pretty much everyone is messed up in her books haha.


message 24: by Beverley (new)

Beverley Jones | 61 comments I'm with the 'thumbs up' brigade on this one. I thought Sharp Obiects was a very compelling novel and personally I like to see women being portrayed as equally messed up and capable of the same terrible decisions and harmful actions as men. Don't misunderstand me, I'm not saying I 'enjoyed' the subtext of the book or didn't intensely dislike the characters, in fact the book made me feel very uncomfortable and annoyed most of the time, but I think that's a plus. Anything that keeps you reading through disapproval and discomfort has achieved a rare thing on this day and age of 'by the numbers' 'women's suspense'. Interesting to wonder though, if Flynn was a man would her portrayal of women create the same divisive response?


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments Beverley wrote: ". . . 'by the numbers' 'women's suspense'..."

I like this description of so many thriller books: "by the numbers." I'm sick of that, too, and am always on the lookout for more literary thrillers.

I still can't say I liked this book, though. You're right that it's not "by the numbers," but none of the characters seemed real to me. They were all more like charictures.


message 26: by Kelly (new) - added it

Kelly (marquis784) | 35 comments FYI: I just notched the group lead for this book is named Kelly. Just wanted to clarify that it is not I.
:). Happy Reading! Sounds like a lively discussion.


message 27: by Kelly (new) - added it

Kelly (marquis784) | 35 comments Okay, unable to edit on my iPad.....I apologize for the typo, I certainly didn't mean "notched"! Darn, auto spell.


message 28: by Kirsten (new)

Kirsten  (kmcripn) | 6438 comments Beth wrote: "Beverley wrote: ". . . 'by the numbers' 'women's suspense'..."

I like this description of so many thriller books: "by the numbers." I'm sick of that, too, and am always on the lookout for more li..."


I agree. I especially like the books by Matthew Pearl. And, of course, The Lying Tongue by Andrew Wilson. I disliked the protagonist in that book, yet, I still liked the book. (Unlike Sharp Objects.)


Chava | 2788 comments I was in the "thumbs up" camp until about 80% in, then the drinking, drugging and sex was getting on my nerves. I also felt that the ending was a bit rushed with some big jumps in the plot. Overall not a bad book, I will 'risk' another book by this writer.


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments Chava wrote: "I was in the "thumbs up" camp until about 80% in, then the drinking, drugging and sex was getting on my nerves. I also felt that the ending was a bit rushed with some big jumps in the plot. Overall..."

This pretty much sums up how I felt, too, except you're a little more forgiving than I am. If this had been the first book by this author I read, it would have been the last.


Yuliya (yuliyalovestoread) | 209 comments Ah! I'm #35 of 43 waiting for this book from libraries media audiobooks system. I would wish I already have this book to participate in discussion


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments After all your anticipation, it may turn out to be a letdown.


Riley Vermilya | 2 comments Found this book to be predictable, yet unable to put down and rated it a notch lower than Gone Girl...Flynn's best work...in my opinion. : )


message 34: by [deleted user] (new)

Riley wrote: "Found this book to be predictable, yet unable to put down and rated it a notch lower than Gone Girl...Flynn's best work...in my opinion. : )"

I have been hearing a lot about "Gone Girl" I think I need to check that out.


message 35: by CL (new) - rated it 5 stars

CL (cljones) | 44 comments I enjoyed this book very much & since this was the 1st book I had read by this author I started to read some of her other works & I have to say I did not enjoy my next choice as much as my 1st. Dark Places did not suck me in like Sharp Objects but I did like it just not as much as Sharp Objects. I will still read her other books will just have to do it in small doses.


Beth  (techeditor) | 1004 comments Cl wrote: "Dark Places did not suck me in like Sharp Objects ..."

It was the opposite for me. SHARP OBEJCTS left me disgusted with most of the characters. The characters in DARK PLACES weren't likable, but only a few disgusted me. Ha, ha--sounds like a case of bad and worse.


Chava | 2788 comments I wasn't disappointed enough by this one, I got Dark places and Gone girl on my to-read list. Which do you recommend more?


Christine both of them! Dark Places first, then Gone Girl.


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