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Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

Dark Places (edition 2009)

by Gillian Flynn

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,8911821,999 (3.83)200
Title:Dark Places
Authors:Gillian Flynn
Info:Phoenix (2009), Kindle Edition, 370 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Tags:mystery, thriller, usa, read in 2013

Work details

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

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    Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane (kraaivrouw)
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    In Cold Blood by Truman Capote (Anonymous user)
    Anonymous user: Dark Places was undoubtedly influenced by In Cold Blood, but brings an interesting form of storytelling to superficially similar plot lines.
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    A Field of Darkness by Cornelia Read (RidgewayGirl)
    RidgewayGirl: A similarly troubled protagonist and an equally tensely-plotted and well written mystery.
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    Reconstructing Amelia by Kimberly McCreight (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: These intricately plotted, fast paced and suspenseful murder mysteries feature young women struggling with dark family secrets and intense drama. Both expertly switch between past and present to slowly reveal disturbing truths.
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English (173)  Dutch (5)  French (2)  German (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (182)
Showing 1-5 of 173 (next | show all)
This 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 ( )
  SquirrelHead | Jun 20, 2015 |
Jillian Flynn has the unique talent of making you care about unlikable characters. She specializes in human fallibility and frailty and is a master at making the reader feel uncomfortable. Flynn's writing and pacing are top notch. If I have one criticism it's the the ending felt slightly forced and was just on the razor's edge of being unbelievable. As a whole though, Dark Places was an intelligent, powerful and thoroughly enjoyable book book about people who have run out of options. ( )
  ScottOglesby | Jun 12, 2015 |

“The Days were a clan that mighta lived long
But Ben Day’s head got screwed on wrong
That boy craved dark Satan’s power
So he killed his family in one nasty hour
Little Michelle he strangled in the night
Then chopped up Debby: a bloody sight
Mother Patty he saved for last
Blew off her head with a shotgun blast
Baby Libby somehow survived
But to live through that ain’t much a life

Soy de los pocos lectores que leyó Gone Girl y le pareció, por sobre todo,aburrido. Creo que La mitad después del gran descubrimiento podría haber tenido 100 páginas menos.

Dark Places es todo menos aburrido. Los tres puntos de vista cuentan una historia que va armándose lentamente con cada escena, cada hora que se sucede (allá en los '80 y acá en el 2000) y cada diálogo irónico, fatídico, de pánico y de nostalgia tanguera de lo que se perdió y no será jamás-- nada está demás, cada pieza encaja en el rompecabezas, cada personaje (Patty, Libby y Ben Day) tiene algo importante que contar.

Ahora bien, más allá de la prosa, el suspenso y el gran misterio, los puntos fuertes del libro son sus tres personajes principales y la presencia de los medios alrededor de la masacre de una familia; la glamorización de la muerte que se hace de una tragedia; el satanic panic ochentoso que inventó asesinos y motivos donde no los hay.

Gillian Flynn sabe de esto. Habiendo sido periodista de espectáculos, conoce los medios, estuvo en los medios; así que, quién mejor que ella para escribir sobre los medios y trivialización que se hace del crimen en el boca a boca y el pantalla a pantalla...

Estos últimos días me la pasé leyendo sobre crímenes verdaderos, mirando documentales sobre crímenes verdaderos (Killer Legends, Cropsey y The Staircase) y un programa de radio sobre un crimen verdadero (Serial); son temas que, DEPENDE de mi humor, me obsesionan bastante. Son historias deprimentes que uno devora, a veces olvidándose, (o tal vez muy deliberadamente dejando de lado) de que son, en efecto, crímenes verdaderos. Es difícil a veces tomar a la muerte como lo que realmente es, una muerte, alguien que perdió la vida; fácil dejarse llevar por el procedimiento policial, y casi detectivesco funcionamiento típico de novelas de Agatha Christie o Arthur Conan Doyle; fácil entretenerse con los pasos que siguen los abogados, los investigadores, la lista con los posibles motivos de los asesinos y el repaso de evidencias... todo sin acordarse de porqué se está investigando, porqué se está buscando al culpable. En un abrir y cerrar de ojos, te olvidás de quién está en el fondo de todo (aunque en realidad, por encima de todo), así de la nada, perdiéndote en la inmensidad de la investigación, te olvidas de lo más importante: de la/s víctima/s.

Dark Places es eso: la historia de las víctimas. Como afectan esos crímenes "fascinantes" y "glamorosos" a quienes tienen la desgracia de sufrirlos.

Reseña a completar Ando ganas de terminarla pero escribir con el celular agota! XD


Reseña pendiente

Pre-reseña: No puedo creer que la misma autora de Gone Girl -alerta spoilers de GONE GIRL!!- y de los caricaturescos Amy y Nick Dunne sea la misma que escribió esta novela espectacular... ( )
  LaMala | Jun 7, 2015 |
This was a good fast read, but I didn't love it. I'd recommend "In Cold Blood" to which this pays homage. It's original, real and a more fulfilling read. ( )
  JGolomb | May 13, 2015 |
It is the women that you have to watch out for in her books. ( )
  Clifford.Terry | Apr 30, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 173 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Gillian Flynnprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Campbell, CassandraNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Deakins, MarkNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dean, RobertsonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lowman, RebeccaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lyytinen, MariaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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The Days were a clan that mighta lived long, But Ben Day's head got screwed on wrong, That boy craved dark Satan's power, So he killed his family in one nasty hour, Little Michelle he strangled in the night, Then chopped up Debby: a bloody sight, Mother Patty he saved for last, Blew off her head with a shotgun blast, Baby Libby somehow survived, But to live through that ain't much a life --Schoolyard Rhyme, circa 1985
To my dashing husband, Brett Nolan
First words
I have a meanness inside me, real as an organ.
Libby Day "I have meanness inside me, real as an organ. Slit me at my belly and it might slide out, meaty and dark, drop on the floor so you could stomp on it."
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
Libby Day, still haunted by the day she witnessed the murder of her family on their farm in Kinnakee, Kansas, and twenty-five-years after testifying that her fifteen-year-old brother Ben was the killer, Libby is contacted by the Kill Club and devises a money making scheme that leads her back into a killer's path.
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After witnessing the murder of her mother and sisters, seven-year-old Libby Day testifies against her brother Ben, but twenty-five years later she tries to profit from her tragic history and admit that her story might not have been accurate.

(summary from another edition)

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