Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl is the book du jour, with two million copies sold worldwide so far, but why has this psychological thriller become such a sensation?
Praise be to the Lord. People are talking about something other than Fifty Shades of Grey. Gone Girl is the latest literary sensation to rock the New York Times bestseller list. If you haven’t already heard about it, you’ll have seen people reading it on the tube/train (its bold orange and black cover is hard to miss). But what’s all the fuss about?
First off, let me give you a very quick summary of the plot. Nick and Amy Dunne are married. In the midst of the economic downturn they have moved from New York to Missouri. Nick runs a bar with his twin sister – bought with Amy’s money – while Amy feels rather lost. Early on in the book it soon becomes clear that their’s is not a happy marriage. Then, on their fifth wedding anniversary, Amy disappears. Nick is accused of murder. And then the struggle to put this book down begins.
Here are five reasons this book has become such a hit:
1) It’s dark. Chick lit this isn’t, but at the same time it’s not too dark. It essentially asks the brutally honest question: ‘how well do we really know the person we’re married to?’ It might ring a bit close to home for some readers, and for others it will make them feel so unequivocally grateful that their realtionship is nothing like Nick and Amy’s.
2) Amazing twist. We shall say no more. You’ll find no spoilers here. But the twist is one hell of a corker.
3) Great writing. Much unlike the last book that stormed the bestseller lists (yes, Fifty Shades, we’re looking at you), Gone Girl is brilliantly written. Up until five years ago, the author, Gillian Flynn was a journalist for Entertainment Weekly. The writing is pacy, witty, gritty and sharp.
4) Structure. This book offers no respite. Once Amy goes missing Gone Girl is relentlessly gripping. The middle is as nerve-tingling as the twist at the end. The story is very cleverly told from both Amy and Nick’s perspective but from different points in time. His narration starts at the point of Amy’s disappearance while she fills us in on their relationship from the very beginning. The two points of view told in this way make you question everything.
5) Social commentary. Gillian Flynn’s observations about marriage and the relationships between men and women is razor sharp. Although, she herself is happily married, she bravely delves into the intricate power struggles and game playing within a marriage.
Gone Girl is a must-read and will justifiably prove to be the book of 2013. So, grab your copy now and join the conversation.
Have you read Gone Girl? What did you think? Why do you think Gillian Flynn’s thriller is proving such a hit? Let us know in the comment box below.