After my incident with Sharp Objects earlier this week, I very carefully checked the title of Gillian Flynn’s last novel.
Dark Places didn’t seem to present too many issues, so I ploughed on.
Libby Day, survivor of the Day massacre 24 years ago, is a 37 year old woman still trying to deal with the scars left by the brutal murder of her mother and two sisters, for which her brother has spent the last 24 years in jail.
Realising that she’s fresh out of money, she accepts an offer to appear at a ‘Kill Club’ convention, where all sorts of disturbing questions are raised about the murders and whether or not her brother was actually responsible for them.
Dark Places is told in alternating chapters, with Libby narrating the odd numbers, and her brother Ben and mother narrating the even chapters. The story of the day of the murders unfolds for the reader as Libby learns more about what happened on that awful night, and begins to come to terms with what happened.
I really enjoyed Dark Places. I thought it was better than Sharp Objects, but not as good as Gone Girl, which means that, as far as I’m concerned, Flynn is only improving, so I look forward to her fourth novel with anticipation.
While the alternating narratives might be a little jarring to some, it’s a style which works well for me, and clearly for Flynn, as she kept it up in Gone Girl.
I ripped through this book in a matter of days, and didn’t have any of the horrendous struggles I did with Sharp Objects. Probably because it didn’t deal with self harm I enjoyed it much more.
It was dark, and unpredictable at times, and presented a host of mostly unlikeable characters, including Libby herself. There were one or two twists I didn’t quite predict, which is always a nice sensation, and overall I really enjoyed this book.