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Gone Girl: A Novel | [Gillian Flynn]

Gone Girl: A Novel

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. 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?
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Publisher's Summary

Marriage can be a real killer. One of the most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York Times best seller Gillian Flynn, takes that statement to its darkest place in this unpausable masterpiece about a marriage gone terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed that her work "draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction." Gone Girl's toxic mix of sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every turn.

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?

With her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.

©2012 Gillian Flynn (P)2012 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Flynn masterfully lets this tale of a marriage gone toxically wrong gradually emerge through alternating accounts by Nick and Amy, both unreliable narrators in their own ways. The reader comes to discover their layers of deceit through a process similar to that at work in the imploding relationship. Compulsively readable, creepily unforgettable, this is a must read for any fan of bad girls and good writing." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.3 (31462 )
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4.2 (27849 )
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4.4 (27769 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Kelli N. Perkins Michigan 08-31-12
    Kelli N. Perkins Michigan 08-31-12 Member Since 2015

    Author of Stitch Alchemy

    HELPFUL VOTES
    248
    ratings
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    "Glad Gillian Flynn Has Broken Out!"
    Where does Gone Girl rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I've listened to all of Gillian Flynn's book and this was enjoyable and exciting. "Dark Places" is still my favorite of her books though and I'd rate that a full five stars.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Gone Girl?

    Gone Girl was unique in the way the characters were revealed little by little in alternating chapters. On the surface we were introduced to a married couple who seem to be sharing the intimacies of their marries. As the book progresses it's apparent that something is wrong because the stories diverge in a way that makes it clear someone is not telling the truth. During the course of the book I could not tell who to believe, which built the drama and excitement as I tried to figure out the puzzle.


    What does Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I enjoyed having separate voices, which allowed for very distinct characters to emerge.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I could not wait to get back to this as the story raced to an impending drama. Flynn kept me constantly surprised as she dosed out the real story a little at a time. One of the most exciting listens I've had for awhile.


    Any additional comments?

    Any Gillian Flynn is worth a listen because of her innovative plots and interesting characters. Definitely one of my favorite writers and I'm glad she's finally broken out of the pack with a bestseller!

    33 of 37 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennifer Webb Virginia 11-14-13
    Jennifer Webb Virginia 11-14-13 Member Since 2011

    ...jennybek

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    4
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    "Great narrators, horrid characters"
    Would you try another book from Gillian Flynn and/or Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne ?

    Probably nothing by the author. I'd give the narrators a shot. They did their work well.


    What could Gillian Flynn have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    I know that the world is full of horrible people. I know that this book reflects that. This is just not what I enjoy, vindictive, selfish characters that never seem to have any redeeming value.


    Which character – as performed by Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne – was your favorite?

    The lady cop. I can't remember her name. She's the only one who seemed likable. Margo, Nick's sister was ok, but she was snarky and mean in her own way. She was loyal, though.


    Any additional comments?

    I know art demands a reaction. I guess if that is what the author wants, she got it. But to go for a bad reaction just for reaction's sake seems cheap to me. I just really disliked the book. It never got better, either. I kept expecting some sort of turn that would redeem ... something. I would recommend not reading this. Some people loved it. Not me.

    26 of 29 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Jo Roxbury, CT, USA 07-03-14
    Mary Jo Roxbury, CT, USA 07-03-14 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
    ratings
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    4
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    "Minority opinion"
    What disappointed you about Gone Girl?

    I guess part of the appeal of the book is the "dark and twisted characters" but in spite of any novelty that might hold, I loathed them and struggled to finish the book.


    Has Gone Girl turned you off from other books in this genre?

    Hasn't put me off the genre but certainly put me off the author.


    How could the performance have been better?

    Thought the performances were about right for what the author was trying to convey but since I didn't like that, the performances didn't count for much.


    Any additional comments?

    Started this book several times hoping I would "find out" what the buzz was all about. After I finished it - finally - I realized that the characters really were despicable people and that I had wasted my time.

    12 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    photolander 04-03-14
    photolander 04-03-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I felt dirty when I finished."
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    This is one of those stories that, like most things that are bad for us, appeals to our baser instincts. Its only saving grace is the narration. Whelan and Heborne capture the paranoid delusions of the two main characters, their mean, selfish, petty, sickeningly narcissistic self-love, with amazing range and authenticity. You will get to the end and hate yourself for slogging through the mud with these two people with the hope that you will have earned or learned something of value. But in this story, no one pays the price of his or her immoral, unethical, and illegal actions. Moreover, Flynn's ending is cowardly. Along with the allegiance of her reader, she looses control of her characters. I was left begging for Nick and Amy simply to shut the hell up.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    After this, a cleansing listen is in order. Perhaps Henry James.


    31 of 35 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Daniel Mcafee Texas USA 05-10-13
    Daniel Mcafee Texas USA 05-10-13 Member Since 2014

    danmc

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Surprisingly Fun and Crazy Story"

    I completely trusted the reviews of a few people I follow and it paid off. I would have never looked for this book as it would never make my radar list.

    This book is pretty course (meaning vulgar language and content), which I always enjoy if it represents reality and written into the story as a natural aspect of the story. In this case the author accomplished just that.

    The story bounces back and forth from the perspectives of the husband and wife, respectively and follow different timelines, interestingly enough. The author pulls it off brilliantly as sometimes this can lead to confusion or a hard-to-follow story line.

    In the end there are certainly a few hard-to-believe aspects of the story that could be interpreted as holes, but I simply decided to ignore and enjoy the story, and it worked.

    The narrators did a great job and the production was good (as you probably know many multiple narrator efforts are butchered - but not this one).

    Overall Recommended!

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L New York NY, United States 02-23-13
    L New York NY, United States 02-23-13 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "disappointing"

    I had high hopes for this book given how highly it was rated by others. I was disappointed to find how negative and unlikable the characters were. I listen to fiction to escape and/or to learn, and I like when there is someone interesting to care about or pull for. This story felt to me like something written by a depressed writer in winter in Brooklyn - it just didn't capture my imagination or hold much heart or suspense for me.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    cindy Gypsum, CO, United States 07-02-12
    cindy Gypsum, CO, United States 07-02-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A dark twisted story about dark twisted people"
    Would you try another book from Gillian Flynn and/or Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne ?

    Hmmm not sure this was a bit dark for my tastes.


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Sad


    Do you think Gone Girl needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No, I don't want to know anything more about either of those people.


    Any additional comments?

    I like stories about "real" people, but these two take it to an extreme - they are way to sick for me to want to know as much as I know about them. The first part was entertaining and intrieging, the second half I found quite depressing. On the good side - it was well crafted and narrated and kept me very interested until close to the end when I saw no hope in sight and then I felt cheated - why should I have cared about two suck sick individuals.

    68 of 79 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Calliope 06-09-13
    Calliope 06-09-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    270
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    "hateful characters make for an uninspiring story"

    I'll start by saying I literally hated how often this author misused the word "literally". Add to that the fact that both protagonists (husband and wife) are ugly, hateful characters, though in different ways. Even the more benign characters, like "the girl"s parents, are willfully blind to their situation and passive aggressive in dealing with their daughter, so saying they're benign is not very high praise. I really didn't care much about what happened because I disliked the characters so much, and the best I can say is that the pathological protagonist was inventive and intelligent in creating cruel situations. I don't mean cruel in the physical sense (no scenes of torture, or anything), but in the emotional and psychological sense. Nasty. I won't bother with another of her books, but I knew that by the second time she misused "literally"

    16 of 18 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MAB Toronto, Ontario, Canada 01-24-13
    MAB Toronto, Ontario, Canada 01-24-13 Member Since 2014

    Fiction: I like Paranormal, Young Adult, Historical, Fantasy, Romance, Classics. Non-Fiction: I like Historical, Military, Memoirs.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    283
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    "Great book, but..."

    I really wanted to give this five stars--I really did--but I wasn't happy with the way things ended and had to dock a star for that. Having said that, Gone Girl is the best book I've listened to and read in a long time. Great, great writing. This was the first Gillian Flynn book I've ever read, and she can turn a phrase like few others. And the twists and turns...my poor nerves! The narration was terrific as well. Both narrators were spot on. What an all-around great book.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Theresa Wichita, KS, United States 06-12-12
    Theresa Wichita, KS, United States 06-12-12 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    72
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    "The narration was great!"
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    One likeable character would be a great start.


    What was most disappointing about Gillian Flynn’s story?

    Going to avoid spoilers, in case you choose to listen to this book, but my general opinion is as follows. Many people talked about the "many twists and turns," there were a few but I didn't find any that surprising, maybe I just read too many psychological thrillers but everything was pretty well laid out by the half way point, surprises over. Plus, you should always have at least one decent person in the story, even if it's an antihero that you root for despite their shortcomings, not in this one. Also, it was lengthy for the story and got boring at times. I kept waiting for things to get better, for the twists making the time worth while, for people in the book to at least get what was coming to them, but it didn't happen. I was so excited about this book after enjoying, "Dark Places," so much, but I was truly disappointed and would recommend that you skip this one entirely.


    What does Julia Whelan and Kirby Heyborne bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    They did a great job with the characters, reading each so well. You could have known who was speaking without being told.


    Do you think Gone Girl needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

    No, it ended so badly that I follow up would be torturous.


    Any additional comments?

    If you would like a great book with great characters and fantastic twists try anything by Lisa Gardner. "Love You More," was excellent.

    69 of 81 people found this review helpful

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