Friday, December 14, 2012

REVIEW: Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

Title:                      Sharp Objects
Author:                  Gillian Flynn
Release Date:     Sept 26/2006
Publisher:           Shaye Areheart Books
Page Count:        272
Acquired:            Library borrow
Format:              Ebook (epub)
Read From:         Nov 4 -Dec 12/2012
Goodreads:         ADD
Purchase:           Amazon/Indigo/The Book Depository

WICKED above her hipbone, GIRL across her heart Words are like a road map to reporter Camille Preaker’s troubled past. Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, Camille’s first assignment from the second-rate daily paper where she works brings her reluctantly back to her hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls.

NASTY on her kneecap, BABYDOLL on her leg Since she left town eight years ago, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows: a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed again in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille is haunted by the childhood tragedy she has spent her whole life trying to cut from her memory.

HARMFUL on her wrist, WHORE on her ankle
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.

With its taut, crafted writing, Sharp Objects is addictive, haunting, and unforgettable.


Sharp Objects was the second book by Ms. Flynn that I have had the pleasure of immersing myself in. After reading Gone Girl, I think it's safe to say that my expectations were VERY high. I wasn't as impressed by this book, but that had little to do with writing, which was still fantastic, and more about so my qualms with the characters and tone.

The story opened in one of my much loved cities, Chicago, but quickly found itself unraveling in the small town of Wind Gap, Missouri. I'm still not sure if it was intentional, but I had a hard time grasping on to a clear understanding of the town's inhabitants and lifestyle. On the one hand, the residents were wealthy, but then they were just as easily working as housemaids in their friends homes-the picture just wasn't painted too clearly, and I was quite lost in that sense. 

Camille, our highly disturbed protagonist, was quite the character. I couldn't decide if I appreciated her for her struggles, or if I resented her for her stupidity. She was kind-hearted, honest, and quick witted, but she was also self-conscious, vulnerable, and nonchalant. I felt like all of those things didn't quite work together to paint the clearest picture of her. I also had a hard time picturing her as a female character, especially one that was supposed to be stunningly beautiful. She almost just "threw" herself through the story line, as though she was in a huge pinball machine-she would hit certain climaxes, and then just as easily fall through some holes. With that said though, I felt for her, especially towards the end, and decided that she was a character I enjoyed reading about, and hearing from.

Secondary characters were appalling in this novel-in the greatest sense of the word. I both despised and welcomed the brassiness of Amma, a 13-yr old princess of the rotten sort. Their mother was also another amazing role-it was almost impossible not to hate her, but a (disturbed) part of me always wanted to hear her opinion, predict her movements. There were characters of the small town sort as well, who all played there part a bit clichéd sometimes-I didn't really care much for them, and got them mixed up at times.

The story line itself was another thing. Another fantastic thing. I alternated from the comfort of my bed, to the slight discomfort of my couch, to the There was nail biting and burning questions and "AHA! I know who done it!" thoughts. But such is not the way of Gillian Flynn. She kept me guessing until the end, the VERY end, until literally a few pages from the end..end. As with Gone Girl, I absolutely LOVED her thought process. I admired and appreciated the time in which she took to map out a series of events that thrilled me, disturbed me, confused me and CAPTURED me, ALL AT ONCE. An absolute master of her craft, this novel was something completely out of the ordinary, yet it could be something happening in your very backyard, should it choose to.

Fans of psychological thrillers would definitely appreciate this novel, and current fans of Gillian Flynn will applause another job well done.

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