This Book = Crazy

11.07.2014



I had a different post scheduled for today, but I finished Gone Girl last night, and I really need to talk to someone about it. So please, comment away.

Um, this book is crazy.

Crazy as in, I really don't know if I've ever read a book that was so messed up in my life. I don't even know what to think about it.

For me, this was a page-turner. I felt like I wanted to drop everything and read it so wouldn't have to be in any more suspense. And let's be honest: that's pretty much what I did yesterday.

I thought the story was interesting and creative and really well thought out. And totally, completely creepy. Not, like, horror-movie-slasher-killer creepy. More psychological creepy.

The characters are terrible people, and I wavered between hating him completely and feeling really sad for them. I also sympathized with them in a few situations, which is nuts because they were absolutely insane crazy. I admire an author who can make me feel sorry for the antagonist. Example: *SPOILER* when Amy gets all her money stolen from her at the cabin, I actually felt bad for her! Then I said to myself, "Self, stop this lunacy and control yourself."

Which leads me to my next point: who is the protagonist in this book? I don't know if there even is one. Maybe Nick's sister, Margo? The reader's guide in the back asks: What is Go's role in the book? Why do you think the author wrote her as Nick's twin?

Thoughts? I feel like maybe she was supposed to provide some sanity to the character dynamic. She was probably the most likable character of them all and the one who was the least crazy.

I won't give an outright spoiler, but I will say that the reader's guide describes the ending as "every bit as troubling as the beginning." I found that to be 100% true. I feel very unsettled right now. 

The momentum for me started to slow way down in the last 50 pages or so as the timeline got farther and farther apart. The ending felt rushed and yet dragged out at the same time.

One thing I could have done without were all the F-bombs. Gosh I hate that word so much. I did feel like the two voices of Nick and Amy were written fairly similarly. There wasn't a huge distinction for me between either of them. The reader's guide asks: Did the author intend for us to think of Nick or Amy as the stronger writer? I think they're trying to read too much into it, but that could just be me.

That said, I really enjoyed the back-and-forth storytelling technique.

I can't decide if I want to see the movie or not. Anyone seen the movie and want to weigh in on this? I feel like it might freak me out. I scare easy. But Gillian Flynn wrote the screenplay, so I assume it's pretty close to the book. Eh?

Bottom line: I personally liked this one. The story really pulled me in and kept me guessing, and I thought it was well written. But I do see why some people I know didn't like it.

Have you read Gone Girl? What did you think? 

47 comments:

  1. I loved Gone Girl. Started reading it one weekend morning and didn't leave my room until I finished it because I HAD to know what happened (also, afraid of encountering spoilers online). It's so twisted and half the time I was sitting there going WHAT JUST HAPPENED?! but it's such a good read. THAT ENDING THOUGH! I still don't know how I think about it, only that... well, it kind of is a deserved one?

    I think Go was written in there to provide some minute semblance of normality/normalcy to the story. Like, to anchor it somehow, because she really was the most "normal" person in the book.

    I didn't even notice the f-bombs... which probably shows just how much I swear in life *whistles innocently*

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  2. As soon as I saw this post title I thought 'she better have the comments on!' Ha. I thought the book was very smart in the way it was written, but I almost wish I had just waited to see the movie. I didn't like any of the characters, and didn't really see the point of Go except for something for Nick to bounce off of (and a twin so it was like another part of himself--since he was so self absorbed) and as it approached the end I though 'I can't think of any way this can end that would be satisfying.' And I was right.

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  3. It's been a while since I read this, so it's hard for me to really respond to a lot of these points. I was surprised by how much I liked it (psychological thriller freaks me out.)! I mean, I didn't LIKE it.. But I enjoyed it? I don't even know if that's the right word... The book sucked me in.

    But I will say... If you think this one was unsettling, try "Sharp Objects" by her as well. It messed with me. I felt like it was even darker than Gone, Girl. Soooo crazy.

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    1. I felt the same way, Kate. As a reading experience, it was a good one, but I really didn't like this book!

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    2. That's basically how I felt. It was a really interesting story and a total page-turner for me, and so that's why ultimately I would say I I liked it.

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    3. Definitely read Flynn's other 2 books! They are both just as good in the "can't put this done, must find out what happens" aspect. Gone Girl was her 3rd book though, so keep that in mind when thinking of her writing style. To me, it just gets better as she writes more.

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    4. Oh Sharp Objects was so disturbing and yet so good! BTW- I liked the movie- it is really similar to the book though!

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  4. Ahhh!! I've been wanting to read this and this review pushed me over the top! I can't wait! I'm on the wait list at the library. Thanks for being so honest about the book, this is the best review I've read on it so far!

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  5. SO TERRIBLY GOOD. It's been a month since I read it and I still feel uneasy. I think that the reasons so many people hated it and the way it ended are the same reasons that make it such a good book.

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  6. Definitely a book that sucks you in. I like it when it book is so engrossing that I can't put it down! I also found the f-bombs annoying, by the way.

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  7. I think "terribly good" ^^ is the perfect way to describe it. Because the events are so terrible but the storytelling is so good. I've read the book AND seen the movie, and the two are pretty close. Obviously, you can't fit everything in the book into the movie, but they did a pretty good job of deciding what was most important. And Ben Affleck was a perfect Nick. All that being said... if you are particularly squeamish then I wouldn't see the movie. *SPOILER ALERT* It's one thing reading the gory details of Amy's escape from Desi's vacation home. And it's another thing seeing it on the big screen. When I was reading it, I could keep the scene as PG-13 as possible. But they definitely don't do that in the movie. I left the theater wishing I could have un-seen that.

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    1. Yeah.... I do the same thing. I like to keep it PG in my mind, and seeing it is a different story. Judging from some of the other comments, I might rethink my desire to see this story take place on screen.

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  8. I know it's weird to say that I liked Gone Girl, because it's so twisted, but it's true. I really loved all Flynn's books. You can really tell that she does a ton of research on her topics, and they are so involved.

    I like the idea of Go as the protagonist. She's definitely the only sane character. Definitely go see the movie; I felt like it was really well done and the characters totally became Nick & Amy to me.

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  9. So I've actually only seen the movie and I'm not sure how it compares but between your review and other friends I've talked to that read the book and saw the movie, it sounds like there's a fair share of similarities. I can totally see how it would be a page turner because the movie is the same- my heart was pounding through the whole thing. The ending is SUPER unsettling (I'm sure it's pretty close to the book's ending), and maybe Disney has conditioned me to want a happily ever after ending, but I didn't like the ending for that reason. The movie definitely doesn't mince curse words, sex, or violence (there was enough blood to seriously gross me out- I'm a nurse and blood doesn't gross me out easy to begin with). I'm pretty visual meaning it doesn't take much to kind of disturb me especially if I'm watching it :/ For those reasons I didn't like the movie and kinda wished I'd saved my money. But full disclaimer on me- I don't like a ton of movies to begin with and I had a bunch of friends who went and really enjoyed it! If you like bad endings then you probably won't mind it :p that's my two cents, I probably won't be reading the book anytime soon

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    1. I don't really do blood either. At least not gore-type blood. Unsettling is really the only word for it! I do like a happy ending, so I know what you mean.

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  10. I read the book right after it was released, so I had forgotten a lot when I finally saw the movie. My husband read the book right before we went to see the movie. He never reads, but he couldn't put it down. We thought the movie was great because they took advantage of having actors to add some things that could not be in prose, to make up for some things from the prose that can't be communicated through acting.

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  11. I'll take tour word and pick it up soon! Confession...I had zero interest in the movie until I heard Affleck was in it/involved. Then my brain fell on the floor and I decidedI had to see it. I really like him and the kinds of movies he's usually in on. Psychological thrillers are my favorite most days.

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  12. I think I really need to read this. I haven't read a book that captured me in a while. I'm reading one now that I'm just like whatever about. My problem is I always try to get the free books or the Amazon sales and they aren't always that good.

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  13. I bought and read the book a couple of months ago having never even heard of it. It took me awhile to read it even though it was a page turner because I couldn't decide if I wanted to keep reading the F-bombs (haha...I HATE that word!), but also because it was so very mentally draining. About half way through the book my husband saw the trailer for the movie and I thought, "No way could I watch this all go down on the big screen". I still feel that way. Plus I would not be able to handle hearing all the F-bombs. That's just me. And just an FYI, supposedly there is a full frontal nude scene with Ben Affleck. Just sayin'...don't know how you feel about nudity in movies.

    So after saying all that, I did enjoy the book in a weird, creepy way LOL. But I still feel like it was a bit much for me.

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  14. I listened to this one on Audible rather than reading it, and I'm still deciding whether I would have liked the book better if I'd read it. I will say, the voices of the readers for Nick and Amy were perfect. The movie could be hard to watch if the voices aren't similar, you know? Weird perspective. Basically, at the end of part one I hated him. At the end of part two I hated her. And at the end of the book I hated both of them. I was horrified by the ending at first - but as I've had time to think about it...it's really quite perfect.

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    1. This is exactly - at the end of Part 1, Amy was the good guy. End of Part 2, Team Nick. By the end of the book I just wanted to go hug my family & thank them for not being as crazy Amy/Nick.

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  15. It was so good. I really had a hard time with liking them and felt like they got what was coming to them both but then I did feel bad for both of them at times. So many twists and turns.

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  16. Dude. DUDE. This book was everything. I read it last winter and STILL don't know how I feel about the ending. I couldn't put it down. Sorry mom and dad, I know I'm only here about two times a year, but Gone Girl is more important.

    I loved all the twists and turns and, while I know they were both pretty terrible human beings, I felt that Nick was a SAINT compared to the CRAZY that was Amy. I mean, get a divorce and move on, lady. No need to fake your own death. If anyone, the person I hated the most was the woman who kept hitting on Nick. Stop making him look bad. We're trying to figure out if he's good or bad!

    I really really want to see the movie and am pretty bumbed I didn't make it to the theater when it was there.

    :deep breath in:

    Anyway, I liked it.

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  17. I love this book, I love the author, and I love the movie. If you enjoyed the book, go see the movie! It's one of the best adaptations I've seen to date, and I'm super picky about books. Also, if you can handle how twisted this one was along with a dash more of just WTF moments, you should pick up her other books!!

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    1. I think I need a detox before reading another one of her books. Ha! Too intense. :)

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    2. Which of her other books do you recommend Melissa? I'd be interested in picking up another.

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  18. I enjoyed it - definitely creepy - but I think there are some creepy people out there that would totally do that to someone.

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  19. yes, yes, yes, yes, yes!
    I listened to this on audiobook - just imagine my angst!
    I got to the end and thought: I don't know if I liked that or not...

    It was such a great page turner, and you're right, the author killed me with empathy for both sides. I felt awful when she got robbed, and then felt odd for being such a pansy. I was truly impressed - and kind of wish I could reread the book for the first time all over again.

    The movie was okay. It was true to plot, but left out many of my favorite bits and details. Worth it if you see it with someone who hasn't read the book though - they'll love it - and then you can add all the details and be the hero.

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    1. I really cant decide if I want to see the movie. I don't do well with the creep factor in movies and TV. But I think the story would make an excellent movie. And I love that the author also wrote the screenplay. I do usually feel letdown by movies in general, because they can't live up to the character depth that books can give. But that's just me.

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  20. When I finished the book, I put it down looked out the window and thought, "Holy crap. Are there really people out there like this?" Just knowing the psychological play in it had me all up in my own mind freaking out. I could not put it down and while I was screaming WTF at the end, I actually liked the way it ended. It felt true to who the characters were.
    I also went back & forth a lot on liking & not liking them.
    And like you said, I actually felt sorry for Amy when her money was stolen and when she was stuck with Demi. But then I read the next chapter & I'm like WHAT KIND OF PERSON ARE YOU.

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    1. I really felt SO bad when her money got stolen, and then I was like WHY DO I FEEL LIKE THIS. I admire an author who can make me sympathize with a terrible character. And I bet there ARE people out there like that, which freaks me out.

      Okay here's something, though. I'm a little confused about what the issue was originally that started the downward spiral. Was it because they got married and Amy started being her "true" self, and Nick didn't like her then? I didn't get any sense of who Amy really was throughout the entire book. Maybe that was the point?

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  21. SPOILER for anyone reading comments!

    I can't even handle how I felt finding out she was pregnant. As a mom, all I could feel was so much sadness for their kid and wonder what if their kid doesn't turn out like Amy wants, will she kill him/her in an attempt to get back at Nick for choosing the kid over her at some point? I'm not going to lie - I totally hugged & loved on my daughter a little more that evening after finishing the book and showed a little more appreciation to my husband for being exactly who he is. No games. Phew.

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  22. I started this book because I wanted to read it before I saw the movie. I, like you, couldn't put it down once I started just because I wanted to know WHAT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN NEXT! And now I'm not sure if I want to see the movie! A good friend of mine drug her husband with her to see it...on their fifth anniversary! Haha. I guess I'd agree with you that it was a good read (simply because I couldn't stop reading it), but it kinda freaked me out and left me wondering in the end!

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  23. Okay, I don't want to read the whole post yet because I wanted to ask... are there spoilers? Haha, I'm so behind on reading + am still wanting to read this book SO badly. Especially now that I've heard another reader say it's straight up crazy.. I can't wait for it!

    PS - Really cool what you're doing with the comment system for November. I'll still be here reading :)

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  24. I honestly couldn't get into this one. I hated the characters too much and couldn't stand their crazy antics. I like her other books a lot better.

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  25. I haven't read it and haven't watched the movie either, but I loved your review. You always manage to make everything interesting, don't you? :)

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  26. That's exactly how I felt about that book! I read it about a year (or more?) ago and I saw the movie when it came out, and from what I could remember it was just like the book. But a friend who didn't read the book saw the movie and said he didn't like it because he didn't think Ben Affleck acted well. I think he's wrong though, I think he just didn't like the character of Nick. I was like, you don't like him because you're not supposed to like him! You're not supposed to like either of them. They are both awful people. And I wanted so badly for at least one of them to turn out to not be an awful person, but that didn't happen. I really liked the book but found the ending to be dissatisfying.
    I've read one of her other books and I'm reading the 3rd one right now. Of the 3 I think Sharp Objects has been my favorite (unless something happens in the last 25% of Dark Places that changes that).

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  27. Oh man, I recently finished this one. I agree completely, however I found the beginning to be VERY slow. It took me roughly 200 pages to get 'in to it' and once I did, I couldn't put it down. I'm left with the same unsettled feeling.

    We saw the movie this weekend, and it was REALLY good, I was surprised because usually the movie slaughters the book. There were minimal changes, and it kept with the book well. It's all just crazy, crazy, crazy.

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  28. When I read this one a few months back and found out they were making a movie, I knew I'd want to see it because (although I felt like all of the characters truly were insane) I really liked it! I heard a lot of people had trouble making it through the first part of the book, which I understand but I felt like it really, really accelerated once you got the the second half. Mind-blowingly so.

    Anyway, I totally and completely agree with you. I also think you should see the movie. Most of the time when I read books that become movies, I am always disappointed by the movie, but I actually found myself wishing I hadn't read the book while watching it because they did such a great job with it! I also definitely plan to read some of Flynn's other books!

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  29. holy crap. such a crazy book.
    i want to see the movie - but like a 11am showing - lol!
    also.. to be totally honest, i thought for as crazy and 'page-turnerish' as the middle of the book was, the final chapter felt deflated, in my opinion.

    xo

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  30. I had to finish the book before reading this post! CA-RAZY!

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  31. Crazy is an understatement! I read this book so quickly that I gave myself a migraine. Of course, I was also on the boat at the time, so there wasn't much keeping me from finishing it in one sitting. Maybe two. I'm still not really sure if I liked it though. I do think it was a well written and captivating plot for a book of it's genre, so I did like that about it. But it's just not really my cup of tea. I generally like things that are a lot less… disturbing, haha. I doubt I'll see the movie. I've heard that it was really well done, and part of me is curious to see how well it translates on screen, but I'm just not sure I want some of those visuals seared in my brain.

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  32. Okay, it's official. I'm getting this book asap and reading it over Thanksgiving break. Thank youuuuuu. :)

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  33. I read this also in about a day. It totally sucks you in. I can't remember a book where I felt so torn between the characters and felt a strong dislike for all of them but still liked the story. I read her other two books and liked this one the best. I want to see the movie. I've heard good things, though we will most likely wait for it to come out on video :)

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  34. Okay this is so weird - I was bopping around in my kitchen this morning and started thinking about the part when Amy's money gets stolen, and then I remember feeling bad for her in the movie and then thinking STUPID, and I tried thinking back to the book to remember if I felt bad reading it, too. So SO WEIRD that I read this post today! I don't know if you've seen the movie yet (I would recommend! Gillian Flynn actually wrote the screenplay, I believe, so it's a good adaptation), but my biggest complaint about it was that Nick and Amy seemed too likable in the movie. I felt like the book really showcased that they were both AWFUL people (you're right - Go was the only character I liked), but the movie's characters were more relatable (I'm sure to draw a bigger audience). And if you thought Gone Girl was twisted, you need to read Dark Places! Even better, IMHO. :)

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    1. I've heard her other books are much darker and more twisted.... honestly? I don't know if I am woman enough to handle it. ha! I need to detox or something. I'm reading a book by Kate Atkinson right now called Case Histories. Have you heard of it or read that one? It's very strange. Not in a bad way necessarily, but I'm about halfway through so I'm still deciding...

      I haven't seen the movie (yet), but I love that GF wrote the screenplay. I've heard it's very close to the book.

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  35. So I'm catching up on blog reading and wanted to comment on your previous post even though you had the comments turned off. Two things:

    1. I'm so glad you guys are connecting with people in your new class! Sounds like you guys had so much fun together!!

    2. I love making homemade pasta! We used to make it all the time, but haven't made it in over a year now! I didn't realize that until seeing your post. I need to make it again soon! :)

    Also, I have nothing to add to this actual post because I haven't read the book, haha! But I wanted to comment about your last post. ;)

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