I bought Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn two weeks ago and decided to read it as soon as possible so as to avoid spoilers. I’d been lucky enough to go from the publishing date til today without hearing anything more than it was the story of a marriage and it all started when the wife disappeared so that the novel was a mystery/thriller/crime one. Good. Everyone who had also read it thought I was fine knowing that, neither too little nor too much. So, on Saturday night I tucked into bed and started reading. It took me longer than I expected (I finished it yesterday evening) but overall I’m glad with my reading since I’ve been working on my dissertation and trying to keep reading Anna Karenina.
Although I usually post a full description from Book Depository, I’ll adhere to what I said above: the less you know about Gone Girl, the better. It is a mystery novel and if you aren’t the type who reads the ending before the beginning (I hope there’s not many people like this!) you’re better only knowing it’s the story of a marriage. Author Gillian Flynn had already written a few other mystery novels, Dark Places and Sharp Objects – which I’m dying to read – where people were very lonely and disconnected from each other, so she wanted to experiment with the idea of a marriage. I think this is a great idea. The institution of marriage has evolved a lot in recent times, especially thanks to feminism and the redefinition of marriage as a civil institution as well as a religious one. It is also very interesting how marriages have an appearance in society, almost-fixed gender roles that are now – thankfully – being redefined. Also, how marriages work as an identity: we never know what’s going on behind closed doors. And even if we think we do know, we actually don’t. This is the idea behind Gone Girl and it works spectacularly well. What really makes it work is how Gillian Flynn creates two different, distinctive voices: Nick’s and Amy’s and how reliable and plausible they both are. If anyone still doubted female writers cannot write convincing male characters, this book will prove them wrong, although I hope those people are a minority.
I highly recommend it to anyone who likes mystery and/or crime novels and in search for a good read. Despite being a NYT best-seller (are you a little bit snobbish like me and the “NYT best-seller puts you down when picking a book?) it is good, even dense and I, at least, had to put it down a few times to rest even though I’m afraid I was tired of reading and writing all day. So, yes, this is a great novel and I highly recommend it, especially if you want to read it before you encounter any spoiler or watch the movie even though it’s on its very early stages with Flynn herself adapting it and Reese Witherspoon producing.
This is how much you need to know if you haven’t read Gone Girl yet and I hope I haven’t over shared. Now, from this point on I’ll discuss SPOILERS from the novel, so continue reading at your own risk!