Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

darkThis is the second book I have read by Gillian Flynn. The first was the blockbuster Gone Girl which had some sick twists in it. This book isn’t as good as Gone Girl, in my humble opinion, but contains many twists and surprises. Flynn is a good writer and manages to portray raw and vile behaviors by her main characters. What’s going on in that woman’s head?! In spite of several revolting scenes I persevered. I was interested enough in finding out who killed the Day family that it kept me turning pages.

Hardly anyone is likable in this book yet I found I wanted to know their story. Libby Day is the main character and narrator of the storyline. She’s the sole survivor of a massacre which wiped out her family. Her mother and two older sisters were murdered in their farmhouse. Her brother Ben is accused of killing them in a satanic ritual and is in prison for life. When all the commotion started little Libby ran out of the farmhouse and hid in a field, hiding from the horror until morning. She returns to the farmhouse, frostbitten from the Kansas winter evening spent outside, calls Aunt Diane (her mother’s sister) telling her they are all dead. You know all this at the start of the book or by just reading the book jacket, so no spoilers here.

Now twenty five years Libby is telling her story. You see how she lived all those years. Obviously she is a mental wreck, trusts hardly anyone, lives a secluded life and stays afloat by the money donated for poor orphan Libby Day. That money was placed in a trust fund and managed, reinvested over the years. But now it’s dwindled down to about $500. She has to do something to start an income but she has no skills so a real job would be questionable solution.

She is approached by a man named Lyle who is involved with amateur sleuths, most of whom believe Libby’s brother Ben is innocent of the murders. They are willing to pay her for mementoes of her murdered family and pay her well to talk to her brother and father.

It’s not a feel good book. It depicts marital disharmony and abuse, dysfunctional relationships, poverty……but if you get through it you’ll be quite surprised by the twists at the end. I will give Flynn’s book Sharp Objects a pass as it’s about cutters. That’s just not appealing to me at all

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4 thoughts on “Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

  1. Sorry you didn’t like the book more.

    I haven’t read Gone Girl or this book. I may give Gone Girl a try sometime though as it does sound really good. Not sure if I’ll read Dark Places or not.

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  2. I’ve been torn about reading this or Sharp Objects. I read and enjoyed Gone Girl though it was incredibly sick and twisted but I’ve been hesitant to go back into that world and these two books looked even darker than Gone Girl. I did start to read Sharp Objects and had a hard time getting into it though I’ll admit I wasn’t really trying. Thanks for sharing your take on this. I think I’m okay to just decide not read anymore Flynn.

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    • I also liked Gone Girl but Dark Places was more disturbing to me. If that’s not your genre then I would give it a skip. I can say for sure I will not read Sharp Objects.

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