.

.

March 21, 2013

Sharp Objects




Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn
Fiction/Mystery
2006 Crown Publishing Group
Finished on 2/10/13
Rating: 4/5 (Very Good)



To say this is a terrific debut novel is really too mild. I haven’t read such a relentlessly creepy family saga since John Farris’s All Heads Turn as the Hunt Goes By, and that was thirty years ago, give or take. Sharp Objects isn’t one of those scare-and-retreat books; its effect is cumulative. I found myself dreading the last thirty pages or so but was helpless to stop turning them. Then, after the lights were out, the story just stayed there in my head, coiled and hissing, like a snake in a cave. An admirably nasty piece of work, elevated by sharp writing and sharper insights.(Stephen King)

From the Author’s Website:

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.


This was one disturbing, yet compelling, read! After reading Gone Girl (which I loved), I decided to try one of Flynn’s earlier novels. In spite of figuring out who the killer was early on (something I’m normally never able to do!), I thought Sharp Objects was quite entertaining, but more than a bit disturbing, especially with regard to Camille’s cutting and the murders. The twist at the end helped make this book a winner. Now on to Dark Places!

10 comments:

  1. I loved Gone Girl too, and want to read this one now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's quite good, but I enjoyed Gone Girl more. I'm anxious to see how Dark Places compares.

      Delete
  2. I read this when it first came out and was headed on a business trip to Las Vegas. I barely left my hotel room (I was in Vegas!) because I was stuck reading this book! Great and disturbing dark read.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's quite a page-turner, isn't it?! I think I read the second half in one fell-swoop. Twisted character, huh?!

      Delete
  3. For me "relentless" is the operative word here. I tired of the drama, in fact I felt quite manipulated by Gone Girl. I'm one of the few, I know, but that is why I'm not eager to follow up with Sharp Objects. Even though your review is wonderful! Probably better than the book! ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! My one-paragraph review is probably better than the book?? ;)

      I don't think you're alone in your assessment of Gone Girl. It seems to be one of those books that readers either loved or hated. I wonder what it says about me that I enjoyed the train-wreck drama...

      Delete
    2. I love train wreck drama, and I love suspense. It's just that by the end of Gone Girl I felt too done in. But give me a well written psychological thriller any day.

      Delete
    3. You've read Defending Jacob, right? That was a winner, as was Gone (Mo Hayder) and all of Tana French's mysteries.

      Delete
  4. I can't wait to read this but it looks like it'll be awhile before I do. :( "... more than a bit disturbing" actually disturbs me, but I'm eager to jump in anyway. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's not nearly as long as Gone Girl and a fairly quick read. And, it's definitely not as disturbing as Cody's books. ;)

      Delete

I may not answer your comments in a timely fashion, but I always answer. Check back soon!