Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

86%

57 Critic Reviews

One of those rare thrillers whose revelations actually intensify its suspense instead of dissipating it. The final pages are chilling.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Marriage can be a real killer. 
   One of the most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York Times bestseller Gillian Flynn takes that statement to its darkest place in this unputdownable masterpiece about a marriage gone terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed that her work “draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction.” Gone Girl’s toxic mix of sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every turn. 
   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?
   With her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.

 

About Gillian Flynn

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GILLIAN FLYNN is the author of the New York Times bestseller Dark Places, which was a New Yorker Reviewers’ Favorite, Weekend TODAY Top Summer Read, Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2009, and a Chicago Tribune Favorite Fiction choice; and Dagger Award winner Sharp Objects, which was an Edgar nominee for Best First Novel, a BookSense pick, and a Barnes & Noble Discover selection. A former writer and critic for Entertainment Weekly, her novels have been published in twenty-eight countries. She lives in Chicago with her husband and son. 
 
Published June 5, 2012 by Crown. 434 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Crime. Fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on Dec 30 2012
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Critic reviews for Gone Girl
All: 57 | Positive: 53 | Negative: 4

Kirkus

Excellent
Reviewed by Kirkus Reviews on May 01 2012

One of those rare thrillers whose revelations actually intensify its suspense instead of dissipating it. The final pages are chilling.

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Guardian

Excellent
Reviewed by Alison Flood on May 20 2012

Flynn, an extraordinarily good writer, plays her readers with the finesse and delicacy of an expert angler.

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NY Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Marilyn Stasio on Jun 15 2012

...because Gillian Flynn’s latest novel of psychological suspense will confound anyone trying to keep up with her quicksilver mind and diabolical rules of play.

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NY Times

Excellent
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on May 29 2012

It is wily, mercurial, subtly layered and populated by characters so well imagined that they’re hard to part with...

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Publishers Weekly

Excellent
on Mar 26 2012

Compulsively readable, creepily unforgettable, this is a must read for any fan of bad girls and good writing.

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Guardian

Good
on Mar 19 2013

...what's really ingenious about Gone Girl is its structure: Amy and Nick take turns narrating events, but not from the same point in time. While Nick charts life from the moment of Amy's vanishing, she fills in their relationship from the very beginning, painting a picture of a couple so ludicrously, impossibly golden...

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Alison Flood on May 19 2012

Flynn, an extraordinarily good writer, plays her readers with the finesse and delicacy of an expert angler. She wields her unreliable narrators – and just who are they? – to stunning effect...

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Dear Author

Excellent
Reviewed by Dabney on Jul 23 2012

It’s a work of deceptive genius–Nick and Amy and their adroit, delusive narratives will stay with you after you’ve finished their tale.

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Entertainment Weekly

Excellent
Reviewed by Jeff Giles on Jun 06 2012

...it's an ingenious and viperish thriller — and that no matter how smart you think you are, it's going to bite you.

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AV Club

Good
Reviewed by Ellen Wernecke on Jul 02 2012

A relentless page-turner, Gone Girl revels in the lack of happy outcomes for its ill-fated couple, whose terrifying normalcy is slowly peeled away, with financial woes and family arguments coming to light.

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Christian Science Monitor

Good
Reviewed by Yvonne Zipp on Jul 11 2012

Veteran mystery readers may see as far as the opening of the second act, but Flynn has more surprises in store on her way to the sucker-punch of an ending. It is, in a word, amazing.

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The Independent

Excellent
Reviewed by Doug Johnstone on Jun 03 2012

This story of a love gone brutally wrong is a painful but utterly compulsive read.

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San Francisco Chronicle

Excellent
Reviewed by Seth Harwood on Jun 10 2012

Timely, poignant and emotionally rich, "Gone Girl" will peel away your comfort levels even as you root for its protagonists - despite your best intuition.

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Dallas News

Excellent
Reviewed by Joy Tipping on Jun 29 2012

So marvelously, intricately plotted is Flynn’s novel that I can’t tell you much about it without giving something away.

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Pajiba

Good
Reviewed by scootsa1000 on Dec 04 2012

I love that this book seems to have fallen into the Sixth Sense/Fight Club/The Crying Game territory, where nobody who has read it is willing to spoil the outcome, leaving interested readers to find out for themselves.

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Chicago Tribune

Excellent
Reviewed by Amy Gutman on Jul 28 2012

what "Gone Girl" lacks in realism, it more than makes up for in inventiveness and narrative bravura. Within this single novel, there are many warring stories...

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Independent.ie

Excellent
Reviewed by Independent on Aug 18 2012

...the author's mastery of plotting and pace makes this an outstanding thriller.

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The Sydney Morning Herald

Excellent
Reviewed by Sue Turnbull on Jul 14 2012

This is genre-busting work by a writer who clearly knows the rules but doesn't want to play by them.

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Chamber Four

Excellent
Reviewed by Nico Vreeland on Jun 15 2012

Flynn simply nails it all. Gone Girl is intense, surprising, substantially different from Flynn’s previous work, and exponentially better written than the average mystery on shelves.

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Chicago Sun Times

Excellent
Reviewed by MICHELLE WIENER on Jun 07 2012

Chicago author Flynn excels at creating generally odious characters who still seduce readers into investing in their stories.

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DNA

Good
Reviewed by Karishma Attari on Jan 27 2013

Flynn is known for her dark and disturbing protagonists and she does not disappoint in this chilling third novel.

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Boing Boing

Excellent
Reviewed by Mark Frauenfelder on Aug 02 2012

This twisted psychological suspense novel had me from the first page and I read it every spare moment I had until I finished it.

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NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on May 30 2012

And if you have any doubts about whether Ms. Flynn measures up to Patricia Highsmith's level of discreet malice, go back and look at the small details. Whatever you raced past on a first reading will look completely different the second time around.

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The Age

Good
Reviewed by Peter Craven on Jan 13 2013

If there's something a bit sick-making about the way this book turns out - and there is - a fat fraction of the world is going to feel the shiver and the sparkle of how it unfolds.

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Esquire

Above average
Reviewed by David Granger on Sep 12 2012

We wish we could provide a summary so you could just skip to part two, but part one is the price you pay. Really. You can trust us. Read it. There's no good guy (or girl) in this book, no one to root for, and no happily ever after. How many books can you say that about?

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Dominion of New York

Good
Reviewed by Rachel on Feb 04 2013

...superbly written (for a thriller, at least) and thoroughly engrossing. It ranks with Emma Donaghue’s Room in terms of living up to hype.

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Dominion of New York

Good
Reviewed by Bethanne Patrick on Jun 20 2012

A lifelong good girl, I thought that bad girls always finished first, licking their fingers and smiling like the proverbial cat. Flynn’s finish is almost Hammurabic in execution and Sphinx-like in tone, a truly wild ride that any reader can take more safely than a hike.

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Full Stop

Excellent
Reviewed by Catie Disabato on Jul 11 2012

Gone Girl gives and gives and gives. Like a generous spouse, it gives everything a reader could want from a mystery novel. It gives a persistent sense of dread and oncoming danger.

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BookBrowse

Good
on Aug 28 2013

Employing her trademark razor-sharp writing and assured psychological insight, Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the hottest writers around.

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Huffington Post

Good
Reviewed by Annie McMonagle on Mar 19 2013

In a nutshell, this is a book that resonates as it asks the unknowable question - how well can one person really know another? *Suspiciously looks over at boyfriend* Put simply - read it.

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Three Guys One Book

Good
Reviewed by JR on Jul 02 2012

I got into this novel with the best intentions of liking it, and to be honest, it held my attention, and had a stronger resonating quality than anything I’ve read in years.

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Arts Sarasota

Excellent
Reviewed by Susan Rife on Oct 05 2012

Except that absolutely nothing — I repeat, nothing — is truly “evident” in this riveting mystery that entwines two of perhaps the least likeable characters in recent literary history.

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Access Atlanta

Excellent
Reviewed by Gina Webb on Aug 14 2012

Their parallel stories reveal more twists than a pair of Slinkies.

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As You Like It

Excellent
Reviewed by Angela on Sep 05 2012

What makes Gone Girl rise above its premise is Flynn’s sharp writing and masterful plotting.

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Fayetteville Flyer

Excellent
Reviewed by Roger Barrett on Aug 09 2012

A believable tale about ordinary people caught in the dark side of love, and going through the motions.

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S. Krishna's Books

Good
Reviewed by Swapna Krishna on Jul 10 2012

Gone Girl is an edge-of-your-seat psychological thriller that will have readers tearing through the pages, eager to discover the next twist that Flynn has in store for them.

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http://skrishnasbooks.com

Good
Reviewed by Swapna Krishna on Jul 10 2012

Gone Girl is an edge-of-your-seat psychological thriller that will have readers tearing through the pages, eager to discover the next twist that Flynn has in store for them.

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Book Journey

Above average
on Aug 28 2013

I actually turned the page at the very end of the book hoping there was more than just that cryptic ending… and of course there wasn’t which both upset me and I had to admit made sense...

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Book Journey

Good
Reviewed by Sheila on Jul 27 2012

So well thought out… so amazingly put together… I am still sitting here in awe and on my way to see what else she has written.

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The Guilded Earlobe

Above average
on Aug 02 2012

The ending did what only the best do. PISS ME OFF. Yet, only sort of. I know there had to be a better way. Really, there did. I just couldn’t figure it out.

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Book Hooked Blog

Good
Reviewed by Julie on Oct 08 2012

It's an amazingly creative psychological thriller that kept my nerves on edge throughout the entire book.

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Boston Bibliophile

Good
Reviewed by Marie on Sep 17 2012

...this is one incredible piece of work sure to provoke conversations and nightmares for a long time after you're done.

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Xpresso Reads

Good
Reviewed by Giselle on Mar 06 2013

A masterfully woven tale of love, lies, and betrayal, Gone Girl is one read I highly recommend for fans of thrillers, mysteries, and all around effed up shit.

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Rivers I Have Known

Good
Reviewed by Amritorupa Kanjilal on Dec 12 2012

...Gone Girl makes brilliant use of the unreliable narrator and the multiple perception trick to give the reader a punch in the guts when she least expects it.

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Booktopia Blog

Good
Reviewed by Sarah McDuling on Aug 07 2012

This is a sly, underhanded book, the kind that plays all sorts of sneaky mindgames in an attempt to distract you, misdirect you and then...pull the rug out from under your feet.

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Bookmagnet

Excellent
on Jun 27 2012

Gone Girl is Flynn’s best work. Everyone needs a good mystery, and I challenge you to find a better one. I know from experience that it isn’t easy!

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Swamp of Boredom

Excellent
on Aug 21 2012

I picked it up late Friday night and finished it Sunday morning. It immediately went to the top of my Favorite Books of 2012 list, knocking The Tenant of Wildfell Hall from its perch. Sorry, Anne.

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Dot Scribbles

Good
Reviewed by Dot on Aug 05 2013

...more and more intriguing. I began to enjoy the unreliable narration as it was such a challenge to work out what was real or not. Gone Girl is a fantastic read, it is dark, gripping and leaves you with a lot to think about.

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SamDowning.com

Below average
on Apr 30 2013

I bet most people will finish Gone Girl with a “Seriously – WTF was that dumb ending” expression. But it’s a pretty entertaining ride getting to said dumb ending.

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Savidge Reads

Good
on Nov 28 2012

As you can probably tell I could enthuse about ‘Gone Girl’, and indeed Gillian Flynn’s writing of it, endlessly. I don’t think I have read a book that has taken me to such dark places, it’s not a graphically disturbing novel though get ready to have your mind played with and warped, and have so many twists and turns.

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Book News and Reviews

Good
Reviewed by Tracy on Nov 07 2012

...the characters—their individual voices—are still living in my head...it is memorable without question. And the ending? Chilling, disturbing, and absolutely perfect.

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Poetry to Prose

Good
Reviewed by Stephanie on Aug 30 2012

While I may have seen a twist or two coming, there was still plenty that had me going “AHHHHH!!!” and saying, “WTF?!” That ending especially had me going, “No, no, NO!!” It is all so messed up and I was left with a feeling of complete unease. But it was the best type of feeling for this book.

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A Bookish Way of Life

Below average
Reviewed by Nadia on Aug 06 2012

Crikey, I couldn't stand this book! I found myself having to take a break from it at one point, because I wasn't even sure I wanted to find out what happened next. I just found myself getting tired with the story and wanting it to end already.

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Reading World

Good
Reviewed by Susan on Mar 08 2013

Gone Girl is an addictive read. The twists and turns of the plot kept me curious and racing to read to the finish. If you like your characters nasty and too smart for their own good, try Gone Girl.

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The Bookish Brunette

Excellent
Reviewed by Bookish Brunette on Feb 19 2013

...in the case of Gone Girl, there is truth behind all the raving that accompanies this book. Read. It. Gillian Flynn… Oh what have you done to my already fragile sense of sanity???

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Nylon Admiral

Above average
Reviewed by Kayleigh Murphy on Aug 01 2013

Just know that at this stage the popularity of the book will tarnish any opportunity to come at it with clear eyes, don't expect too much...

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Dine & Dish

Excellent
Reviewed by Kristen on Aug 04 2012

I was up until 2am finishing this book. Even though I was incredibly tired, I couldn’t put it down until I figured out how it ended. In fact, I started reading it the night before we left for our Estes Park vacation and had to force myself to keep it shu...Once it was open again, I was completely absorbed in the twists and turns of this story.

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Reader Rating for Gone Girl
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Well written but I hated the characters and it dragged on and got so annoying

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