NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • A NEW YORKER BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR • NOW IN DEVELOPMENT AS AN HBO LIMITED SERIES
From the acclaimed author of Gone Girl, “a riveting tale of true horror by a writer who has all the gifts to pull it off” (Chicago Tribune)
“Sensuous and chilling . . . a propulsive and twisty mystery.”—Entertainment Weekly
Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in “The Satan Sacrifice of Kinnakee, Kansas.” She survived—and famously testified that her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, the Kill Club—a secret society obsessed with notorious crimes—locates Libby and pumps her for details. They hope to discover proof that may free Ben.
Libby hopes to turn a profit off her tragic history: She’ll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club—for a fee. As Libby’s search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started—on the run from a killer.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Before she wrote Gone Girl, Gillian Flynn concocted this dark mystery, which tracks the story of Libby Day: a woman whose testimony put her brother behind bars for the brutal murders of her mother and two sisters. Twenty-five years later, the Kill Club—a creepy fan group obsessed with the Day family massacre—pays Libby to reexamine the violent night she’s spent her life trying to forget. Libby uncovers a series of shocking details surrounding the case, including allegations of sexual abuse, an unwanted teen pregnancy, and a satanic ritual sacrifice. Flynn has a talent for careful and precise revelations, building momentum as she works toward the book’s unexpected and chilling conclusion. We look forward to the movie adaptation, starring Charlize Theron.
Edgar-finalist Flynn's second crime thriller tops her impressive debut, Sharp Objects. When Libby Day's mother and two older sisters were slaughtered in the family's Kansas farmhouse, it was seven-year-old Libby's testimony that sent her 15-year-old brother, Ben, to prison for life. Desperate for cash 24 years later, Libby reluctantly agrees to meet members of the Kill Club, true crime enthusiasts who bicker over famous cases. She's shocked to learn most of them believe Ben is innocent and the real killer is still on the loose. Though initially interested only in making a quick buck hocking family memorabilia, Libby is soon drawn into the club's pseudo-investigation, and begins to question what exactly she saw or didn't see the night of the tragedy. Flynn fluidly moves between cynical present-day Libby and the hours leading up to the murders through the eyes of her family members. When the truth emerges, it's so twisted that even the most astute readers won't have predicted it.
Dark Places snagged me at page one and never let me go. I recently read Gillian's Gone Girl and loved the book so much that I wanted more. I absolutely adore her style - where she turns her characters into real people. Her descriptions are so clear and sharp that you can actually visualize the characters - what they look like, their mannerisms, what they would sound like if you could hear them speak, what they feel. I could almost reach out and touch the members of the Day family in Dark Places. I could practically smell the cow farm, the cold snow, cigarette smoke, blood and fried salami. This is how I know that I am in love with a book.
Next up on my reading list is Gillian's Sharp Objects. I anticipate a similar reaction, and look forward to getting sucked into another fascinating read.
This was a compelling story. Initially, I was bored only because I didn’t understand the characters and I assumed that it was going to be a predictable ending. However, as the story progressed, I really felt gravitated towards finding out “who done it”. There were so many elements that left me entertained and there were some that I was confused about. Relevancy is key in these mystery novels and I think Gillian does it well, you just have to be patient.
It takes a gifted writer to make you hate a character, then love him. Gillian Flynn does this twice, with both of her protagonists. Their voices a crisp and distinctive and the reversals clever and great fun.