Title: Gone Girl
Author: Gillian Flynn
Page Count/Review Word Count: 484
Okay, okay, I’m behind the times here. Gone Girl has been around for a little while now, and it’s been turned into a major movie – admittedly one I haven’t seen yet. It has a lot of good press and people heap compliments on it all over the place.
I’m not really sure why. It seems to me that it must be a combination of a lot of little things all working out and creating a wave of momentum that carried the book to success, because while it was a competently written thriller, it was nothing special – at least to me.
I’ll try to avoid spoilers when I talk about the plot, but I need to at least introduce it. Loosely speaking, it follows the story of Nick Dunne and his wife Amy, who disappears at the start of the novel. The story alternates between Nick’s point of view and Amy’s, thanks to the helpful addition of a diary as a plot device.
And there are twists and turns throughout – certainly enough to keep a typical reader entertained. But personally, I felt like the narrative rambled on from time to time, and the book could easily be 100 pages shorter without losing any of its effect. And then there was the fact that I found both of the main characters to be fundamentally unlikable. I didn’t hate them, because that would at least stem from some sort of passion – I just didn’t really care what happened to them.
I also didn’t like the ending, although I suppose it did the job. It certainly could have been worse, but I think it could have been better – I found it hard to believe that some of the characters would have acted as they did, but I can’t say much more than that without giving away the story line.
Of course, I’ll still be checking out the movie when I get a chance. One of my colleagues – the only person that I’ve spoken to who’s read the book and watched the movie and so is able to make a comparison – said that the book is better, which doesn’t bode well for the movie. But actually, I can picture it working better as a movie because they can cut all of the boring bits out of it.
Besides, in the book, the two characters almost seem to speak with the same voice. Part of that could be attributed, theoretically, to the fact that they’re a married couple and that they’ve started to think in similar ways. But really, they’re not so similar after all, as you’ll find out if you read the book. Either way, in a movie, having two different actors with two different styles should help to make it more natural. I guess I’ll see – I should watch it.