Saturday, September 15, 2012

Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn

Gillian Flynn parallels us readers to her characters and indicts us along with them!

Amy, a native New Yorker and only child and the star of a children's book series called Amazing Amy, written by her parents, makes a point of mentioning in her diary that she is becoming the kind of person she used to mock: the domestic, unappreciated wife who'll do anything to keep her man happy. Her point of view alternates with that of her husband, Nick--a native midwesterner who lives his life trying not to be like his misogynistic father. Nick has been babied by a doting mother and fraternal twin sister and so has never been a take-charge kind of guy. This fact about him makes it believable that his life could go so wrong so quickly without him having the slightest clue until it is much, much too late.

When Amy goes missing on their fifth wedding anniversary, we, like the ever vigilant press, sift through the clues to piece together what happened. Although we read from the points of view of both characters, neither are quick to reveal their cards. Like the cops and the press, we oscillate between theories. I never thought I would be the kind of person who would quickly jump to conclusions--just as Amy and Nick thought they'd never become certain kinds of people. They become those kinds of people; I become those kinds of people. And it happens again and again as the story takes on turn after turn.

I think, "I would never be a cheater," and then some new information makes me see why, in a certain situation, I, too might become one. I think, "I would never be a killer," and then I, too, can see myself wanting to kill someone. I think, "I would never stay with someone who treats people that way," and then, once again, I think, yes, for that reason, I would stay, too.

I'm trying to be vague so this review doesn't spoil the wonderful surprises awaiting you! You won't be disappointed!