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Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
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Dark Places (edition 2009)

by Gillian Flynn

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
3,9352691,305 (3.83)215
Member:Pigletto
Title:Dark Places
Authors:Gillian Flynn
Info:Phoenix (2009), Kindle Edition, 370 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Rating:***
Tags:mystery, thriller, USA, read in 2013

Work details

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

  1. 82
    Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane (kraaivrouw)
  2. 30
    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.
  3. 31
    Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (becksdakex)
  4. 20
    In the Woods by Tana French (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: These psychological suspense novels feature characters who, as young children, witness horrible crimes and must now revisit their painful pasts to discover the truth. The stories are fast paced, chilling, and atmospheric.
  5. 21
    The Secret History by Donna Tartt (SomeGuyInVirginia)
  6. 10
    A Field of Darkness by Cornelia Read (RidgewayGirl)
    RidgewayGirl: A similarly troubled protagonist and an equally tensely-plotted and well written mystery.
  7. 00
    Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn (sturlington)
  8. 00
    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.
  9. 00
    The Fault Tree by Louise Ure (RidgewayGirl)
  10. 00
    Every Dead Thing by John Connolly (kraaivrouw)
  11. 01
    The Dark Rose by Erin Kelly (amyblue)
    amyblue: Both books have a strong sense of place, compelling main characters and involve both a present day and a past story. Also both are very intricately plotted thrillers.
  12. 12
    Salem Falls by Jodi Picoult (VictoriaPL)
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» See also 215 mentions

English (255)  Dutch (5)  French (2)  German (2)  Italian (1)  Danish (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (267)
Showing 1-5 of 255 (next | show all)


This should probably be a standard GIF for any of the Flynn novels I've read so far. I just can't get into them the way the majority seems to be able to.

The short of it: I loathed Gone Girl. I rarely deal out one star ratings but GG got her hands on the singular golden ticket. I liked Dark Places so much more than GG but it's still just an 'eh, ok' read for me.

I think that's another reason a Daria gif seems perfect for this non-review. These books remind me of that show the characters would watch, Sick, Sad World - with the shock plot stories that would flash up in the background of some scene in Jane's bedroom. Flynn's books feel like that to me, grab-bag shock plots.

What I'm getting at, other than the fact that I've watched an ill-proportioned amount of Daria in my lifetime, is that there wasn't anything in this book (or the others I've read so far) that I could connect with. I don't need likable characters or a reliable narrator - digging into a book with someone you really can't relate to can be just as entertaining and rewarding as a character you completely relate to/respect/like. What I need is an amount of relevance and substance that plugs me into the story, into the characters. This tragedy could definitely be relevant, on the surface it's very much so. That's just it though, that 'on the surface' part of the equation. Digging deeper into the thick of things made me feel like this book was more about manipulating the shock of the tragedy rather than layering in any real psychological exploration/substance.

I hate to write an author off but I don't think I'll be revisiting any more Flynn novels in the foreseeable future. Maybe if I do revisit her work at some point I'll spot what I'm missing. ( )
  lamotamant | Sep 22, 2016 |
Did not finish this...too gruesome and disturbing ( )
  NHreader | Aug 28, 2016 |
Couldn't put it down. Great voice and writing. Kept me in suspense until close to the end and I can usually figure out "whodunit" pretty quickly. I absolutely recommend it to anyone who likes a dark tale with plenty of blood, mystery, and a nice touch of humor mixed in. ( )
  amcheri | Aug 22, 2016 |
OMG you guys I am officially a Gillian Flynn fangirl! This book doesn't just stab you in the gut, it twists the knife and watches all the gory bits that come out.

Flynn is kind of unusual in that her books have no real "heroes." Just because a person is "innocent," that does not automatically mean he or she is "good" or even "nice." But somehow, Flynn makes you want to stick with her characters right to the end. Libby has flaws, to put it lightly - she is selfish, aggressive, even violent, yet at the same time you don't want anything bad to happen to her. ( )
  doryfish | Aug 15, 2016 |
I found this to be an interesting book full of unlikable but still compelling characters. The mystery comes together in the end, although I thought the solution was a little over complicated. Still, it was fair, with all of the information and several hints being given along the way. It's an ugly story, but it does pull you in. ( )
  duchessjlh | Aug 9, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 255 (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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Epigraph
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
Dedication
To my dashing husband, Brett Nolan
First words
I have a meanness inside me, real as an organ.
Quotations
“I have a 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. It’s the Day blood. Something’s wrong with it. I was never a good little girl, and I got worse after the murders.”
“I was not a lovable child, and I’d grown into a deeply unlovable adult. Draw a picture of my soul, and it’d be a scribble with fangs.”
Last words
(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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No descriptions found.

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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