Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, a book review

This is another one of those books where I wish I had started writing the reviews while reading it. But it was a wonderful book to begin with and I couldn't put it down, not even to pen my thoughts, until it was too late.

First let me warn you, if you are like me where the abstract on the back of the book has totally grabbed you and you have read a few pages of the beginning and now waiting on library list at number 237 for your turn so you can devour each and every word of it. You might not want to read this review cause I am going to spill the bean… I have to. Consider yourself warned…
Gone girl was part of the book club read late last year (2012) and I borrowed the book from a friend with the intention of reading it and that was before the busy-ness hit me. I didn't attend the book club discussion and returned the book unread, only to find that the copy that I had reserved at the library was heavily in demand. Long story short, I finished the book very recently.

The first part of the book is very well written, energetic and humorous and at times delve into the darkness of human psychology. The two main characters are introduced, the girl through her diary and the man through his circumstances in the present; the story is very gripping and intelligent and very close to real life. The girl is missing under mysterious circumstances and foul play is suggested with her husband as a suspect. The suspense of is he or is he not, is gripping.


Half way into the book and you realize that the book has a deeper plot it’s not just a wife gone missing and husband is at fault deal, the plot thickens and you wonder who, why, how long, who all… If her life at stake, is she under duress, perhaps she staged it all but now what next. What exactly pushed her to take such extreme measures…? You are tempted to skip to the next chapter, all the words and story in the book seems like rambling cause the reader is focused on the next phase. You feel for the girl who thinks she has planned everything but has lived a very sheltered life and knows nothing of the world of thugs.


The book has just ended and you want to pull your hair out. The girl is a psychopath and has been all her life but no one had the courage to call it out. It was interesting till she was acting psychotic without the reader knowing the real reason but her trying to get her old life back with the same person whom she harbored negativity and plotted against for more than a year, just doesn't make sense. If a sequence of videos on an anonymous bllog was enough to convince her that she was with the right person all along then why didn't she have a dialogue with or a change of heart in more than a year when she was corroborating and plotting against him? She killed her friend who was helping her to get back to her husband and then went through artificial insemination to keep husband with her. Well, had she done it (insemination) a year ago that too biologically, they both wouldn't go through all this drama… I guess it can all be explained away by saying she was a stubborn and headstrong psychotic but as a reader it felt frustrating and you felt kind of cheated. You invest a lot of energy and emotion in the character and in the end find out that the character was toying with you all along and pinned you right where they wanted you fixed. If that surprise was the intent then the book is well written but yet the end seems anti-climactic, she was an intelligent psychotic but turned a typical dumb female and got away with it all… counter intuitive.

I wanted her to win and stick to the plan and show woman power even if for the wrong reasons but going back to a mediocre life and dumb husband and getting pregnant to keep that husband was just too out of my idea of intelligence… 

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