Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn | Rating: ★★★★☆
"There’s something disturbing about recalling a warm memory and feeling utterly cold.”
You've heard all the buzz, haven't you? If you haven't, you're clearly just not listening. Gone Girl is one of the books in recent years that everyone is talking about. It's dishy. It's twisted. It's over the top. It's creepy. It's crazy. It's a blast that will leave you scratching your head in wonder. Gillian has cemented her place in pop culture references by penning a novel that has spawned the phrase: "I'm going to Gone Girl myself!" and has delighted readers in a frightening-soap-opera-chills sort of way.
It leaves you cringing as it takes you into the mind of a dull-incredibly-jerky husband and his out of her mind, yet completely clever, wife. Although it may drag at times, although you won't necessarily like the characters a good chunk of the time, it's a still an entertaining and oddly disturbing read. Gillian Flynn writes in a manner that can be, at times, too much but still is quite the ride. It'll throw you flat on your ass several times only to draw you right back into the plot without much of a chance to breathe.
For a lot of people, myself included, it was impossible to put down. Some of the narration had my eyes rolling to the maximum and other parts left me with chills. It's not always frightening in the horror sort of way, but it does leave you reeling psychologically -- especially when you step into the mind of Amy Dunne. Amy is one terrifying, excellent, intelligent villain and it's refreshing for me to see such a character.
Gillian does an incredible job penning such a twisted mind. She put a great deal of effort into the character of Amy, and it's easy to get lost in the fire that is this character. You fear her. You hate her. Yet you love her and admire the effort she put into, well, her terrible deeds. She's quick on her feet, she's manipulative, she's dangerous and it's oh-so-appealing and oh-so-horrifying. I loved every minute of it, every glimpse of her personality and her plans. Amy Dunne is a new wave of women who are villains and it really fucks with your mind.
All the parts of the novel I didn't like were mostly to do with Nick and his narration and the way he handles his missing wife. He's very real and very boring at times. He isn't a good person and yet you feel bad for him, for obvious reasons, and can't help but to cringe at the terrible way in which he handles the news of his missing wife, the investigation and all his fuckups along the way. Nick Dunne is the perfect example of that dopey, slow brained yet intelligent, white boy you are bound to know in real life. He's incredibly fucked up. And he had a lot of wasted potential when it came to his parts of the book.
However, his end of the plot definitely served up just the right amount of reactions to stir the drama. Everything he did was entirely predictable and it's almost too easy for Amy to fulfill her plan of revenge. He's stuck; he's stuck in this game and all the horrific plots that will come in his future with or without Amy. Soon, though, he surprises us all by learning to play the game almost nearly as well as his wife; luring her back home and to make more of an elaborate addition to her so called kidnapping. Amy has a theme for theatrics, as we see early on, and so her return comes with a lot of questions, baggage and blood.
You almost feel bad for Nick.
It's a very interesting, twisted and dramatic read that kept me engaged for a great deal of time. It's not for everyone, though. Gone Girl has plenty of moments that will be a major literary turn off for most, but if you're relatively un-squeamish, you should definitely cave into the hype. Gone Girl is a ride straight to crazy town that you don't want to miss. Ever.
Afterall, it's always fun to get into a mind as twisted as Amy Dunne. Right?