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?
Okay, so I’m sure we’ve all heard of this one. It’s practically impossible not to have heard of this one; especially with the movie now out. As I’m a classic book addict, I had to read it before I went to see the film adaptation, and there seemed like no better time than for Spooky Reads Week!
So it’s a really hyped up book, and thrillers aren’t exactly my go-to choice of read, but it had me intrigued.
My first thought, being totally honest, it’s a slow starter. A really slow starter. For the first quarter or so of the book, I was actually disappointed. I was worried I was one of the select few that ‘just didn’t get it.’ But as I reached half way, boy, did that change. So that’s my word of warning – it starts slow, but stick it out and you won’ be disappointed.
It’s not even that it was boring, it just has a hell of an introduction, and I guess I’m impatient. The story is told from both Amy and Nick’s perspective, with Amy’s diary entries from the past few years giving the back story and Nick in present day. While Amy’s entries did intrigue me, and the history is so well set up, I just felt like I was playing catch up – even to just get to as much as the blurb had told me, as it took a while to even get to that stuff. Then there’s the twist, smack-bang in the middle, and damn, it got good. It got un-put-downable. (Literally, I have been walking around with my head in it non-stop, even walking into town, because I could not sacrifice precious Reading Time for mundane things like grocery shopping, so I read while I walked.)
The twists are excellent, they are genius. The whole plot is. And yes, the back story and long introduction and everything is necessary, excellent, even, but I just wished it kept me a little more rapt when reading it, rather than wanting to move onto the action. But I do understand it had to be built up, and it works brilliantly, so yeah, like I said, I guess I am just impatient. But that’s what knocked this off the whole 5 stars for me.
However, it is brilliant, and you should read it. It is a truly scary book. A shit-how-can-people-be-that-messed-up type scary book (I generally find this much scarier than paranormal thrills, as it’s actual possible. Probable, even, to some degree; somewhere at least.)
The double-sided narrative is excellent, because it shows the he-said-she-said side of relationships. My word against yours, kind of thing. It makes you question what is the real truth and what is a point of view, and this has been done excellently.
Oh, and talk about an ending. This is what I’ve heard talked about the most about this book – one hell of a what the f*ck ending, and that it certainly was. Honestly, my mind still baffles. I’m hoping to see the film this week, and will be very curious to see how they have portrayed it. I’m also definitely interested in reading more of Gillian Flynn.