Goodreads synopsis: On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media–as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents–the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter–but is he really a killer? As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?
I went into Gone Girl knowing absolutely nothing about it other than the fact that it’s about a girl who goes missing and it was recently made into a movie that everyone was raving about. My first impression of this book was less than great because I absolutely hate books that switch perspectives, but once I realized that Amy’s perspective was all diary entries (until later on), it didn’t bother me. Nick and Amy were both kind of annoying in the beginning. I guess I was put off by how much Nick talked about how it’s impossible to really be a writer anymore (which is what I want to do with my life, sad face). And I was annoyed with Amy for saying some pretty anti-feminist things, like how she’s “just being a girl” in a very negative context. (Although, as you will learn, that Amy isn’t really, well, Amy. So I can forgive that.) But by the end of the book, I found myself thinking that Amy might be one of my favorite literary characters ever. I mean, she’s a genius. A mentally ill genius. (I was trying to diagnose her as I read, and I felt like borderline personality disorder (my own disorder) might fit, but that definitely didn’t cover everything. I looked it up after finishing the book and found this interesting article where a psychiatrist suggests BPD and antisocial personality disorder.) I still hated Nick by the end, but I was enjoying hating him, if that makes any sense. One of those love-to-hate characters, I suppose.
For some reason I didn’t expect to like this book, but I found myself staying up late into the night to keep reading. The details really made it so amazing. I was so into the mystery, trying to figure out if Nick was really responsible, trying to guess who else could have done it, playing detective as I went along. This is the type of book that really engages you, so that you feel like you’re a part of the story. And it made me feel so much. I was almost in tears when Amy lost all her money. I was practically sick to my stomach because I was rooting for her so hard. Which surprised me, because I don’t like spoiled rich kids, but I wanted her to be victorious in whatever her goal was. I guess that’s just good writing.
I am definitely going to be seeing this movie and reading the rest of Flynn’s books, since this was so phenomenal.