Monday, April 9, 2012

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn


Gillian Flynn is a bit twisted. Twisted in a good way, like Dan Chaon is twisted. She is a smart, original, and truly gifted writer. But my God she is twisted.

Daniel Woodrell
 Last year I read an excellent biography of Patricia Highsmith.  After I finished it, I immediately bought and read  (I had not up to that point read any of her books) Strangers on a Train, The Talented Mr. Ripley, and The Price of Salt.  It is only now occurring to me after reading Flynn’s third excellent novel that she has Highsmith talent. She is that good.

Patricia Highsmith
I often think I have genre blindness. I always forget that Daniel Woodrell  (Winter’s Bone, Tomato Red) and even Kate Atkinson are mystery writers; in the same way I never really realized that Gillian Flynn is a mystery writer. Technically they are so good it doesn’t really matter, I guess, but I wouldn’t hesitate to put Flynn in with this group of top tier writers (and I am including Chaon in here, as I think he is an excellent comparison for those who like a more cerebral mystery).
Flynn has you by page one. She does, so, you know, don’t fight it, just give in. She had me on page one of Sharp Objects and Dark Places and she will get you too. Cancel your weekend plans, call in sick to work, order a pizza, and read. Her books have insanely good hooks, and much like Highsmith and Kate Atkinson, oh, the twists and the turns. [Liz here--I like her better than Kate Atkinson.]
Gone Girl is a literary novel, a thriller, a mystery, a book club pick that won’t disappoint when the discussion begins, and a beach read all at the same time. And if you want to talk "unputdownable," a completely overused made-up word in publishing; I feel no shame in using it for this book. Not only could I not put it down, but I was actually stressed out all the way through. I mean, it's great when a book entertains…but don’t you really want to be stressed out over a holiday weekend? I know I did.

The wonderfully twisted
Gillian Flynn.
A wife missing. A husband whose lies catch up with him one by one as he becomes the only suspect.  A novel where nothing is what it seems. Oh, and planning a wedding? This will give you pause.  

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