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Dark Places: A Novel | [Gillian Flynn]

Dark Places: A Novel

Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in "The Satan Sacrifice of Kinnakee, Kansas". As her family lay dying, little Libby fled their tiny farmhouse into the freezing January snow. She lost some fingers and toes, but she survived, and famously testified that her 15-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, Ben sits in prison, and troubled Libby lives off the dregs of a trust created by well-wishers who've long forgotten her.
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Publisher's Summary

Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in "The Satan Sacrifice of Kinnakee, Kansas". As her family lay dying, little Libby fled their tiny farmhouse into the freezing January snow. She lost some fingers and toes, but she survived, and famously testified that her 15-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer.

Twenty-five years later, Ben sits in prison, and troubled Libby lives off the dregs of a trust created by well-wishers who've long forgotten her.

The Kill Club is a macabre secret society obsessed with notorious crimes. When they locate Libby and pump her for details, proof they hope may free Ben, Libby hatches a plan to profit off her tragic history. For a fee, she'll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club...and maybe she'll admit her testimony wasn't so solid after all.

As Libby's search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the narrative flashes back to January 2, 1985. The events of that day are relayed through the eyes of Libby's doomed family members, including Ben, a loner whose rage over his shiftless father and their failing farm have driven him into a disturbing friendship with the new girl in town.

Piece by piece, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started...on the run from a killer.

©2009 Gillian Flynn; (P)2009 Random House

What the Critics Say

"Gillian Flynn is the real deal, a sharp, acerbic, and compelling storyteller with a knack for the macabre." (Stephen King)
"A gritty, riveting thriller with a one-of-a-kind, tart-tongued heroine." (Booklist)

What Members Say

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  •  
    Robin Pennington 01-24-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Better than "Gone Girl""

    This is a very different book; a whodunit rather than a did he or did he not with a crazy plot twist. It shares a few plot devices such as devoting different chapters to different characters. I liked this.
    A murder mystery with finely drawn characters and plenty of good story. It will especially appeal to Baby Boomers because of (previous) topical relevance but good for all readers/listeners interested in this genre. I would also highly recommend for true crime fans; although this is fictional.
    This is only the second book I've read by Ms. Flinn. I haven't googled or Wikipedia'd her. In these two books she has unlikeable protagonists - if that's not an oxymoron. It did not work for me in "Gone Girl" as I saw neither character development or redemption. Did I find either n this book? You'll have to read it to see. No spoilers here.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Casey 01-24-15
    Casey 01-24-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Dark, twisted, engaging"

    This story has a darkness that sinks in. The gritty, not-at-all emotionally nuanced psychological mystery is mentally intriguing as it twists in out and out of all of the characters' minds. It's emotionally disturbing and riveting as it covers things hopefully no one has to experience (unless delving into a fiction world), but somehow touches those "dark places" we all either possess or have witnessed in others through memory. The darkness of this story brings a terrifying nostalgia in the reader because it touches those private mental hideaways.

    The character development is genius as you never really like any character, yet somehow root for each one in the way that you hope they rise above the stench that permeates their lives. The past chained to each of them in a way that the present never gets far away from the events of 24 years ago.

    The writing is like the story; Gillian Flynn's writing is visceral and affecting. She uses rich fatty words that stick to you and in your mind and make you feel what the character feels. This type of writing is accompanied so well by the narration.

    The narration leaves nothing to be desired with the exception of the male voice narrating Ben. He seems not only to old but too calm and confident, and even preppy--quite the opposite of Ben's character. However it doesn't take long to forget the voice as your immersed in the story.

    This is my favorite book of Gillian Flynn's that I've listened to on Audible. It really is an experience that's out of body, yet touches something so deep and hidden within us; It reaches our dark places.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike Harbour 01-23-15 Member Since 2008
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    "Interesting, different and worth a listen"

    this is a very hard book to explain its full of desperate dark people who live sad and sometimes sick lives. I enjoyed it and I didn't. I had to step away from it and come back that's how it makes you feel. this is my first read of the author and I will read her again. The narrator was very good and brought the appropriate feel for the book. If I were you I would take a chance on it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dawn Dever 01-23-15
    Dawn Dever 01-23-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Wow..."

    I'm not sure what to really say about this book. It keeps you on your toes though, that's for sure! This was one of the darkest books I have ever listened to... In fact, there was a point in this book where I literally wanted to just fast forward through because it was too much for me! Overall, absolutely amazing... But now that I just finished it, I need to listen to something happy!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eman 01-22-15
    Eman 01-22-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Didn't disappoint in the slightest!"

    An expertly developed story. Had me constantly guessing and coming up with theories and then catching me by surprise. Just what I expected from Flynn. Perfectly suspenseful. Just couldn't stop listening once I started!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ruth Ravve Chicago, Illinois, US 01-22-15
    Ruth Ravve Chicago, Illinois, US 01-22-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Great story! I was gripped right to the end"

    Dark Places is a murder mystery and so much more. Alternating from the past to the present as the mystery unfolds is brilliant. The characters are very well developed and described, it was easy to imagine them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    HolmesRN 01-19-15
    HolmesRN 01-19-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Non stop ride!"

    This book, THIS BOOK! From the moment you press play, you can't help but go down the dark winding road that it takes you. I found myself listening non stop, headphones in constantly! If you liked Gone Girl, you'll love dark places. I really think I liked it better.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Edward C. Renz Plano, TX 01-17-15
    Edward C. Renz Plano, TX 01-17-15 Member Since 2013

    Eddo of Posted Note

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    "Deep Dark"

    You can't help but love Gillian's writing style. Her stories consume you. I'm all swallowed up.
    It's an excellent story, but very dark. While reading, stay close to the light.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melissa 01-15-15
    Melissa 01-15-15
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    "Slow, but worth the read"

    This book had moments of captivating chapters and moments of lull. It is worth pushing through because the end is captivating.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Discovery Bay, CA, United States 01-15-15
    Jennifer Discovery Bay, CA, United States 01-15-15 Member Since 2013

    Say something about yourself!

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    "Amazing Gillian Flynn is sick and I love it!"

    It will grab you from the very beginning. Gillian Flynn has the rare talent to make you laugh and a few minutes later cringe.

    I can't wait for her next book. Well worth your credit and time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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