Book Bite: Sharp Objects

Title: Sharp Objects

Author: Gillian Flynn

Year published: 2006

Rating: Only read once.

Why I read it: I picked it up at the airport this Christmas for two reasons: 1) I have recently watched Gone Girl and I was intrigued to see what else Flynn had written, and 2) flights are exponentially more fun when I have something to read.

Blurb: When two girls are abducted and killed in Missouri, journalist Camille Preaker is sent back to her home town to report on the crimes. Long-haunted by a childhood tragedy and estranged from her mother for years, Camille suddenly finds herself installed once again in her family’s mansion, reacquainting herself with her distant mother and the half-sister she barely knows – a precocious 13-year-old who holds a disquieting grip on the town. As Camille works to uncover the truth about these violent crimes, she finds herself identifying with the young victims – a bit too strongly. Clues keep leading to dead ends, forcing Camille to unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past to get at the story. Dogged by her own demons, Camille will have to confront what happened to her years before if she wants to survive this homecoming.

Comments:

– While on the surface the plot itself makes it seem like straightforward ‘who-dunnit’ crime novel, the story moves beyond that and is intricately tied together with the characters. As someone who often finds the crime novel formula a tad trite, I enjoyed a good break from form.

– I found the writing to be very engaging. Flynn has a way with words that, for me at least, brings the reader into the atmosphere of the novel.

– The novel deals with some major psychological themes, some of which I found borderline triggering and tough to read. I think Flynn writes about it in new and interesting ways, unwrapping the true nature of the ugliness within the story’s characters slowly but surely. There were scenes that I found wholly uncomfortable to read, but this only speaks to Flynn’s ability to make you feel the wrongness of it all.

 

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