I have Gillian Flynn fever. Second book of hers this month. I am hooked. Her debut novel, Sharp Objects, was a page turner and Dark Places does not disappoint. I was hooked from start to finish and amazed that Flynn’s popularity flourished after her third novel and not after her first two books.
I asked myself, “Flynn, where have you been all my life?” Well, at least after 2006 when her first novel came out. Flynn is a very talented writer and she delivers yet another dark and suspenseful novel set in Missouri that truly captivates her audience. Flynn’s writing style demonstrates her ability to deliver an amazing crime novel.
Dark Objects tells the story of Libby Day, who was only seven years old when her family was massacred and the evidence she presented put her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, behind bars. Now, twenty-four years later, she is trying to decipher what really happened that day. Her memory starts to become blurry once she is contracted by the Kill Club, a secret society of people obsessed with the details of notorious murders. Members of this group are convinced of Ben’s innocence. Now presented with various information, Libby starts to wonder about things she has never wondered before. She begins to realize everyone in her family had something to hide that day and the truth is going to be much harder to find.
The protagonist is a hardened, depressed, selfish young woman who chose to isolate herself from everyone. Since the tragedy, Libby lived off of donations from people who felt sorry for the little redhead girl who lost her family. She never had to work due to the generosity of those people, therefore never found the need to socialize. At the beginning of the novel, her funds finally ran out, causing her to find her own way to make ends meet.
To make money, Libby tries to gather memorabilia to sell to the obsessive members of the Kill Club. Libby uses their obsessiveness with the murder of her family to her advantage, yet in return, they urge her to get out of her comfort zone. They want her to face the past in order to prove to her that she was wrong when she helped convict her brother. Flynn does a great job of bringing her characters to life and they’re well developed and grow throughout the novel. Flynn not only tells you how they feel but shows you through their actions.
The novel is broken down into chapters dedicated to specific characters. The chapters go back and forth from past to present. The flashback style of the novel gives readers a bigger scope of what happened to the Day family. This novel is full of twists and keeps you guessing until the end—it’s definitely a page turner that will keep you up all night trying to figure out who was responsible for the Day family massacre in 1985.
Gillian Flynn is an American author, former television critic, screenwriter, and comic book writer. Flynn’s success as a writer is attributed to her fifteen years of journalistic experience as a double major in English and Journalism. She has three published novels Sharp Objects, Dark Places, and Gone Girl, which became a film in 2014.