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?
Yes, I'm incredibly late to the party on this book. I started reading it the first week of December emboldened by everyone’s exclamations of it being the best book EVAR. I read the first few chapters and then it put it down to focus on the holiday craziness. I’d pick it up again and read a chapter or two in my downtime, but my inevitable feeling was, meh.
Have you ever had an experience where you’re spending time with a married couple and it’s obvious that they fought right before meeting up with you so you spend the entire evening feeling awkward and uncomfortable to bear witness to their bad marriage? That’s pretty much what the first half of Gone Girl was like for me. Nick and Amy are neither likable nor sympathetic, in fact I spent the majority of the book hating their guts. Their initial problems with each other seemed so trivial and entitled. Their views on the world around them came across as short sighted and elitist. In short, I hated them and wanted them to FRO and then DIAF for good measure.
Then the plot thickened. Seriously…it actually thickened so much you would swear the pages were made out of yeast.
As the story developed into some seriously crazy shizz, I still maintained my initial feelings that I hated the two main characters but I was slightly less annoyed and more intrigued by how truly, diabolically, irrevocably screwed up they both were.
To say more would be to give away too much, and I think this book is one that everyone needs to experience for themselves. I really enjoyed Gillian Flynn’s writing style and I am curious to read her other books, as I've heard that writing incredibly flawed characters that you want to stab in the eye is kind of her thing.
As much as I loathed the characters and how this entire hot mess was resolved, as a writer I couldn't help but be incredibly impressed at the level of skill and mastery it takes to write an entire book about two people who couldn't be less ridiculous and unlikable but making the reader emotionally invested regardless.
That impression leads me to definitely recommend this book, but also wish you luck in dealing with Nick and Amy. I for one was very happy to not be around them anymore.