What I’m Reading: Sharp Objects

Sharp ObjectsFrom the book jacket:

Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, reporter Camille Preaker faces a troubling assignment: she must return to her tiny hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls. For years, 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 in her old bedroom in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Dogged by her own demons, she must unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past if she wants to get the story—and survive this homecoming.

My review:

This is by far the deepest, darkest read of the Gillian Flynn “trilogy,” and as disturbing as it was I couldn’t put it down. I have no idea where Flynn’s headspace was at when she penned this one, but whoa…

The characters are all NOT OKAY, from 30-something year old Camille to little Amma and her cronies, but I still was desperate to know how much more messed up these individuals would become. (Answer: Waaaaaaaaay more.) I was able to kind-of-sort-of figure out who commits the murders, but the twist (because there has to be a twist) was perfect, not over the top, and explained a lot of the characters’ behaviours.

One relationship I had a bit of trouble understanding was the one between Camille and her boss, Curry. Overall, Curry seems genuinely concerned about Camille’s well-being given her past, so I struggle with why he’d give her this assignment. I understand that she has an “in” as the events being covered happened in her hometown, but did he now realize the damage this place had caused Camille growing up?

Aside from that, the remainder of the relationships in this story are beyond healthy, creeping me out in an oddly-satisfying way. I don’t even think Dr. Phil could handle the crazy of these characters.

In all honesty, I’m not certain Sharp Objects is for everyone. It’s extremely dark and a lot of the content I think would make your average reader extremely uncomfortable. Still, I was absorbed by it and thought it was disturbingly good.

My rating: ★★★★★/5.

 

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What I’m Reading: Dark Places

From the book jacket:
Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in “The Satan Sacrifice” of Kinnakee, Kansas. She survived—and famously testified that her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, the Kill Club—a secret secret society obsessed with notorious crimes—locates Libby and pumps her for details. They hope to discover proof that may free Ben. Libby hopes to turn a profit off her tragic history: She’ll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club—for a fee. As Libby’s search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started—on the run from a killer.

My review:
Well then, this book was a little intense compared to the silly, light, & refreshing book I reread right before diving into this one!

I decided to pick up Dark Places as I really enjoyed Gone Girl. (Which I apparently read way back in 2013!) I was in the “mood” for something a little darker, and this definitely filled that request.

Dark Places takes you back and forth between the past and present, going between Patty and Ben before the murders happened, and Libby during the present day as she tries to figure out what actually happened. There ends up being a lot of finger pointing as to who may have killed the Days, and I thought I had figured out what had happened a couple of different times but alas, I was WAY wrong.

The characters were all well developed, but I would’ve liked to know more about Debbie and Michelle, and perhaps even Runner.

Overall, I definitely recommend this book, and I’ll give it ★★★★½ / 5. Maybe read it in the summer in the sunshine though, as it’s pretty heavy for a dreary winter read.

What I’m Reading: Gone Girl

 

Synopsis from Goodreads.com:
Marriage can be a real killer. 
One of the most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York Times bestseller Gillian Flynn takes that statement to its darkest place in this unputdownable masterpiece about a marriage gone terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed that her work “draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction.” Gone Girl’s toxic mix of sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every turn. 
On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer? 
As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?
With her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.

My review:
I stared at this book in my Kobo “Wish list” for a looooong time before finally buying it. Thriller books aren’t my M.O., but holy crap, am I glad I did! I couldn’t put the book down!

The book is split up into two “parts,” and I thought that I had it all figured out after the first part – Why Amy went missing, who did it, etc. And then the second part of the book started and holy mother, was I wrong! There were points in the book where I wanted to scream at the characters for being so crazy. I really can’t say much because it will give it away, but wow, is one of the characters so NEEDY. (Those who have read it probably know who I’m talking about!)

They do a sneaky thing with this book that makes you unable to put it down by alternating between Amy & Nick’s stories. There seems to be cliffhangers at the end of every chapter, but of course, to get to the next chapter about Nick, you have to read Amy’s chapter. Then hers will be intense, so of course, you HAVE to read what happens to her next, so you read through Nick and his is interesting so … vicious cycle!

Overall, I give this book 4.5 stars out of 5! (Why can’t Goodreads have a half-star system?)

What did you think of this book?