4th October 2018

Book Review

Gone Girl

Gone girl is a thriller portraying a dark, spine- chilling story about mystery, love and deception. The book is based around the sudden disappearance of Amy Dunne and the police investigation with her husband Nick Dunne as the main murder suspect. The book continues to hook you in and throughout it there is never a spot that ceases to captivate you as the reader. Gillian Flynn uses a number of language features to draw the reader in and bring her story to life. As the  web of lies and mystery builds up so does the climax of this thriller, you begin to doubt the ‘truths’ that have been previously portrayed to you and read on in disbelief as the events begin to unravel and the truth comes out.

Throughout Gone Girl there are little things that Nick hints at that gives you the impression that Amy is not the person that you think she is from her diary entries. From the start of the book when Nick says “there’s something disturbing about recalling a warm memory and feeling utterly cold”. From that sentence alone the reader begins to understand that there’s something wrong in their marriage which consequently leads to Amy doing what she did. What are you thinking, Amy? How are you feeling? Who are you? What have we done to each other? What will we do?”, this quote from Nick is in my opinion the biggest foreshadowing piece that the book provides the reader with. The first two questions that Nick is constantly asking is something that people in a marriage normally would ask each other but as the questions built up they get more concerning and not something people in a typical marriage ask each other or even someone in a marriage with problems would ask each other, the reader then understands that something is truly wrong. Especially with the last question where he says “what will you do” and then you later find out all the things that Amy did do to Nick, it seems like Nick was expecting Amy to do something but not up to this extent.

The similes in the book show you the way Nick and Amy think about each other. There are numerous examples which gives the reader how psychotic Amy really is and how in the dark Nick is about his wife’s behaviour. The first simile is used very early on in the book when Nick says Her thoughts shuttling through those coils like fast, frantic centipedes”. Nick uses this simile to show how quickly and slyly Amy’s mind works, the word frantic could also mean how quickly Amy’s mind jumps to conclusions and there’s something wrong with the way her brain works (reflected in the actions she does). Later on Amy says “I’ll hold myself to him like a climbing, coiling vine until I have invaded every part of him and made him mine”. When Amy says this Nick has obviously stopped loving her and it shows you how she’s planning to trick him into loving her again. After everything that Amy has done to Nick in attempts to ruin him she still holds a certain power over him to wiggle her way back into his life…their life.

In Gone Girl there are two major character developments, Amy and Nick. If anything Nick has more of a character development whereas with Amy it’s more of a confusing ride for the readers as she seems to have multiple personalities that she uses on different people for her advantage. No one really knows the true Amy, even Nick her husband. From the start in her diary Amy seems like a likeable person (a “cool girl”, in Nick’s words). She takes the personality of Amazing Amy from her parents book series and makes herself into that person on paper, but as it always is with Amy she isn’t really that person. She uses that personality to make herself appeal to the police and the public to screw over Nick. When Amy first met Nick at a writer’s party she had another personality of someone laidback, funny and someone who just generally appealed to Nick. She kept up this personality for a little over two years until they got married and she changed again. Amy’s personalities are hard to track as she changes into different versions of herself with the different people she uses, from the Amy who Nick initially knew and loved to a completely different Amy that Nick didn’t know existed. “Can you imagine, finally showing your true self to your spouse, your soul mate, and having him not like you?”. This quote from Amy sums up her changing personalities and how her thinking is very unusual, she seems almost confused about the idea of being her true self.

Nick is also a confusing character as he flicks through being likeable and not. It’s hard to decide whether or not Nick is a good guy but he is definitely more likeable than his wife Amy. I personally think that Nick is a good guy who is just tired, throughout the book Nick keeps on falling for Amy’s plan of revenge. Nick has always suspected that something is off with his wife but not to this extreme. Everyone who used to adore Nick now sees him differently and Nick is in a situation he cant charm his way out of. But just as quickly as the public started hating Nick, Amy returns, makes up an elaborate lie and then Nick is in the clear… well from the public at least. To put it simply, Nick starts of as a funny happy guy, then upon Amy’s change in personality he becomes a man consumed with unease, after Amy’s supposed murder (Nick being the lead suspect), Nick is distraught and always trying to anticipate her next move, when Amy returns Nick is blinded by love for his unborn child and that seems to wash away all of the bad things Amy has done. There is nothing more important to Nick than being the good father he never had, he is willing to do anything or brush aside anything for this opportunity.

In conclusion Gone Girl is like nothing I have ever read before. The characters keep you hooked on the story and the way the book is written keeps you in constant suspense. The book is much more than a murder mystery as it touches on the way people live their lives and toxic relationships. The book is one of my all time favourites and the way that the author makes the story seem so real and intense makes it something really special for the readers.

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