Book Review- Dark Places

Title: Dark Places

By: Gillian Flynn

This review is sponsored by: http:/

About the Author (From the Book) –

Gillian Flynn is the author of #1 New York Times bestseller Gone Girl and the Dagger Award winner for Sharp Objects, which was also an Edgar nominee for Best First Novel. She loves in Chicago with her husband and son.

ISBN:     978-0307341570

Cover Price:       Rs. 801.00

Rating:  4/5

Something about the book ( from the book’s cover):

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, 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.

Now for my View:

Having read Flynn’s Gone Girl, I was eagerly waiting to read her other works too. So when Dark Places ended up with me I was incredibly thrilled. Flynn has the knack of writing mystery in a manner that would at some point in time give you the chill. Infact, you wouldn’t even realise at what point in time you picked up a character in the book as the one you like best. You would root for that character, good or bad, and suddenly realise that you are not only the reader but a spectator to the plot and to the events penned. So it certainly wouldn’t be wrong to say that she is indeed one of the top notch writers of our time, who not only gives you a story to read but does one hell of a job with it!

Dark Places is the tale of Libby Day and her family. When she was seven, her mother and two sisters were killed mysteriously one night. But she survived and testified against her older brother, Ben, sending him away to prison for good. But twenty five years after that night the members of an unusual club called the Kill Club, obsessed with crimes and mysteries, got in touch with Libby. Their sole aim was to persuade Libby on unearthing the truth for according to them Ben was innocent. Libby however detested thinking about that night. She had tucked away all the memories of that fateful night in the deepest crevices of her mind, her dark place! Nevertheless, she decided to look into it, not to get Ben freed, but for the money she was being paid for it. Well, that was her only concern atleast in the beginning. The novel takes you through the journey of Libby meeting everyone associated with that night. It also takes you through the events that took place twenty five years back through the words of Ben and Patty, Ben and Libby’s mother. What happens next is something I so want to discuss but can’t, for that would give away the mystery that is the essence of the novel. So you would have to read the book to find out more.

The book is told in an interesting fashion using alternating point of views. You read about Libby in the present day, written in the first person, and then you read about what happened with Ben and Patty on that eventful day, written in the third person. I must say Flynn is an expert in alternating point of views.

Libby is portrayed as a dark, impulsive, damaged girl as a consequence of her gruesome childhood. Her compulsion to steal, disconnect with emotions and her lackadaisical attitude would make you want to abhor her a little. But that is the point as described in the book in Libby’s words ‘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.’ So she is shown as a normal human being, one who had gone through a traumatic childhood and has to live with the memories of that night for the rest of her life. She is aloof and insensitive; her own defense mechanism.

What I like about Flynn is that she has the way of tying every loose end in a manner that you would be compelled to admire the plotting that goes into the stories she writes. Everything that happens in her stories has a reason to it and fits perfectly in the greater scheme of things. All through the novel you would try to figure out who was behind all that happened. There are several possible scenarios that Flynn puts into your mind that you are kept guessing till you reach the end. And at that point too she manages to spring a surprise.

Dark Places is indeed a dark novel, dealing with a dark subject. It is not a feel good book but an out and out mystery surrounding extremely sinister and gloomy events. Flynn has written it wonderfully as it is not easy to write a novel on a subject such as this and not deviate from the tone and setting of the events. You could find it slightly slower in its velocity in the first few pages, especially if you would have read Gone Girl too, but trust me if you have the patience you would surely enjoy the outcome.

Flynn’s books are raw and different, truly different! Dark Places is melancholic throughout and that is what makes it a great read! So pick it up for its twists and turns. Pick it up for it is a genuine mystery novel and not a pathetic love story in its midst. Pick it up for the author is brave enough to not sugar coat the character of a woman with issues. Pick it up for Gillian Flynn for she writes stories that unwittingly stimulate the mystery lover in you!

What are you still waiting for? Order the book and relish it!

A word about the great people from who made it possible for me to read this book. I am glad that I am part of their review program. They don’t just send you any book but the best books out there that one could get their hands on. You can find this and more amazing books on their website.

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