Published: Jul 25, 2012
In hard cover, it was on the New York Times best seller list like it owned it.
The movie rights sold to 20th Century Fox for more than $1 million.
I’m less than fond of mystery/thrillers, and yet I stayed up until 4 AM to finish Gillian Flynn’s “Gone Girl.”
And if I told you too much about it, you’d have to kill me.
You’d have to kill me because you don’t want anything to spoil your reading pleasure. Which does not mean your pleasure in figuring out whodunnit, because in “Gone Girl” you basically have no idea what has happened. Or if something happened. Or, if something happened, what it means. To say nothing of what happens next. [To buy the paperback from Amazon, click here. For the Kindle edition, click here.]
Let’s leave it at this: Nick and Amy Dunne had a blissful romance and marriage. Then his magazine job evaporated. Then she lost her job writing quizzes for another magazine. Then his mother got sick. So: two unemployed people in New York, one sick woman in North Carthage, Missouri. What would you do? Well, what’s what they did.
Life in a rented McMansion in Missouri: tolerable for Nick, very tough for Amy. Her opening remark: “Should I remove my soul before I come inside?” Make friends? Oh, come on. Amy: “This is a town of contented also-rans.”
And then, on the morning of their fifth anniversary, Amy disappears.
And if something bad happened to her, guess who the most obvious suspect is?
The novel is told from two points-of-view: hers and his. But it’s not like that tired cliché: No two people remember events the same way. It’s more like the line that powered the medical TV series, “House” — everybody lies.
Ooops, that was almost a hint.
And I should limit myself to advice; If you have something planned between midnight and 4 AM…. don’t start this book.
Oh, go ahead. One teaser: Your husband/wife/lover? Do you know who he/she is? Are you sure?
AFTERTHOUGHT: I’ve decided that 2/3 through the book, the plot goes off the rails. The last third reads fake to me. And the ending, though slick as snail snot, seems psychologically bogus to me. But can a thousand reading groups be wrong?