Customer Reviews


 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing and riveting
I devoured Sharp Objects in less than a day, but it would be incorrect to say I enjoyed it. The story is so dark, so twisted, that is makes for incredibly uncomfortable reading. Camille is sent home for the first time in eight years to report on the murders of two young girls- but this is markedly less disturbing than the mother she left behind. From the start, I had an...
Published on 23 April 2013 by Nichola Thorpe

versus
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A good read, but not Flynn's best work
I was first introduced to Flynn's work through the Gone Girl movie, which I really enjoyed. Based on that, I read Dark Places, which was one of my favourite books of 2014, so I was eager to read Sharp Objects. Since reading Sharp Objects, I have now also read Gone Girl.

In short, this is a good novel and worth reading, but that's not to say there are no...
Published 6 months ago by PeeBee


‹ Previous | 1 288 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing and riveting, 23 April 2013
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Paperback)
I devoured Sharp Objects in less than a day, but it would be incorrect to say I enjoyed it. The story is so dark, so twisted, that is makes for incredibly uncomfortable reading. Camille is sent home for the first time in eight years to report on the murders of two young girls- but this is markedly less disturbing than the mother she left behind. From the start, I had an uneasy feeling about her mother Adora. Enter Camille's precocious half-sister, who makes Camille uneasy from the outset with her changeable nature and expertise at deception. I don't want to spoil the story, so I will suffice it to say that the final twist was one I didn't quite see coming. Flynn artfully twists your suspicions this way and that so that you're never quite sure where you are. What was interesting was that every character had dark depths to them, and her heroine is not spared scrutiny of this as many often are.

I will definitely read more of Flynn's work. It's for you if you enjoy tight plots, psychological intrigue and in-depth portraits of deeply flawed, scarred human beings.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


73 of 78 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely recommended, 7 Feb. 2007
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Hardcover)
Thoroughly enjoyable read. The cover of the book definitely doesn't do this justice. If it wasn't for a friend's recommendation, I would never have picked this up as it looks like a typical crime novel. But please let me assure you - it is so much more than that! This definitely comes under the psychological thriller/literary fiction umbrella.

This is a book that has stayed with me long after reading it. Flynn wonderfully captures the suffocating atmosphere of small town Missouri so intensely you can feel the claustrophobia bearing down on you. Whilst Camille is not a wholly likeable person, her character binds the whole story. The book is very chilling and disturbing and not for the faint-hearted but is brilliant and definitely worth a read. Whenever you think you know where the story is taking you, it turns a sharp corner and leaves you completely breathless.

I cannot capture the essence of this book keenly enough so I can strenuously recommend that you give this book a go.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Claustrophobic and Edgy...An accomplished debut novel., 12 Nov. 2011
By 
Paul Hansper-Cowgill (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Paperback)
From a rich, sterile and emotionless upbringing, it's no wonder Camille is damaged. As she strives to normalise her life away from her family, she learns she has to go back to the town, and the overbearing lifestyle she thought she had left behind: Wind Gap, Missouri,is the kind of place you only visit in nightmares.
As an investigative reporter, Camille is drawn back to the family hometown to shed some light on the gruesome murder of a local girl. In an apparently ritualistic killing, Camille believes she is on the trail of a serial killer and even though she doesn't want the job, she feels morally obliged by the respect and love she has for her Editor - a father figure in her life more than her robot-like, bland step-father - and the opportunity of a 'scoop' over a rival newspaper. As she re-aquaints herself with her over-bearing mother and her manipulative, cold step-sister, Camille opens old wounds. As a physcological thriller and as a portrait of 'old money' people trying to cope with the modern world, Gillian Flynn has excelled herself.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 17 Jan. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Kindle Edition)
A real page-turner! Once I started this book I could not put it down, and I did not guess the ending.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A good read, but not Flynn's best work, 2 Jan. 2015
By 
PeeBee (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Kindle Edition)
I was first introduced to Flynn's work through the Gone Girl movie, which I really enjoyed. Based on that, I read Dark Places, which was one of my favourite books of 2014, so I was eager to read Sharp Objects. Since reading Sharp Objects, I have now also read Gone Girl.

In short, this is a good novel and worth reading, but that's not to say there are no problems with it. Even taking into account that Sharp Objects is Flynn's debut novel, I felt there were a few issues with the book. The first issue is pacing - very little happens in the first half of the book, both in terms of plot development and character exposition. From the halfway point onwards, the plot develops very quickly indeed, but not in an entirely satisfying way - especially as there were no surprises. The "one what done it" is obvious from an early stage, and Flynn isn't trying to misdirect us. While that would be fine, I just didn't ever fully buy into the novel. The second issue is the need to analyse everything through the lens of cod-psychology; this is an overused trope in American TV and literature which I find tiresome. While Flynn writes about psychoses, sociopathy and psychopathy better than most, I was still a little underwhelmed with the way in which so many characters were written as a list of symptoms. To try my best and not present a spoiler, one character's issues were so apparent from so early on that the "reveal" at virtually the end of the book seemed to be an insult to the reader's intelligence; something I didn't expect from Flynn after reading her bravura story-telling in Dark Places. Dark Places also had a few issues, but those were easily ignored in the wider context of the novel. The same can't be said for Sharp Objects.

None of this is to say that Sharp Objects is a bad book - it's not bad at all. It's better than most bestsellers, has some knockout prose and isn't worried about presenting the reader with sympathetic, likeable characters - the protagonist is pitiful and the key antagonists are despicable. Flynn presents them with acerbic observations. What I really enjoy about Flynn's writing is her ability to surprise; Flynn very casually and expertly drops bombs on one's preconceptions, especially when it comes to gender politics. Her writing is provocative in all the right ways - you think about the character, the plot and also, your own views on such matters.

Flynn is very good author, but coming to Sharp Objects after Dark Places is certainly the wrong order of things. Not Flynn's best, but well worth reading. If you only read one Gillian Flynn book, make it one of her others. If you plan to read all of them, start with Sharp Objects - it's good; Dark Places and Gone Girl are better.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredibly Dark First Novel, 20 Oct. 2014
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Paperback)
Sharp Objects is about Camille Preaker, a previous small-town girl making her living as a Journalist for a small newspaper in Chicago. When two girls are kidnapped and killed in her home town, Camille is sent back to explore the crime and ultimately, write a story for the paper. When Camille arrives on her dysfunctional family's doorstep, she not only has to deal with old wounds but also uncovers some truths that may change her outlook on her family forever.

Up until around half way, I wasn't that impressed with Sharp Objects. The storyline wasn't exciting and up until that half-way point, I wasn't really invested in the characters enough and the town to care about who committed the crime. However, I'm not sure what changed but around the half-way point, I became more and more invested in the story. The whole book was so incredibly dark, it leaves an almost bitter taste upon finishing and I immediately wanted to read more of Flynn's writing.

Gillian Flynn has a talent for writing about damaged characters and that's one of the main reasons I love her. To create truly disturbed characters and subtly weave certain aspects of their personality into the story, whilst maintaining the image of normality takes real talent and Flynn hits the nail on the head every time. The way Flynn described these characters and built each one up to be more damaged than the last is one of my favourite things about this book, as depressing as that sounds and is one of the reasons I gave this book 5 stars.

The ending of this book had been building up from around the half-way point and although I had a little idea of the way the story may go, I was still surprised by the details of the reveal. There were aspects that I couldn't in my wildest dreams have predicted and Flynn did a very good job of keeping certain things hidden, whilst leaving soft hints throughout. For a first novel, this is incredible and whilst Gone Girl is still my current favourite Gillian Flynn novel, Sharp Objects isn't far behind.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark, cynical and twisted, 17 April 2014
By 
Roman Clodia (London) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Kindle Edition)
When so many crime novels are derivative and imitative, Flynn is a genuine breath of fresh air. Here she takes some well-worn clichés of the genre (the woman who returns to the home she escaped; the alliance of journalist and cop; murder which unsettles small-town USA; the damaged narrator) and makes them feel alive again.

Make no mistake, this is dark, twisted, a little perverse and sometimes nastily grubby – and yet there is a kind of compelling fascination in the story which is very well crafted.

I could say more about some of the almost taboo themes explored here but that may give away too many spoilers for new readers. If you’re looking for crime fiction which is also intelligent, probing, and nicely cynical about some of the ways women are culturally constructed and represented, this is excellent.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic debut, 21 Feb. 2013
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Paperback)
This is a fantastic debut that shows great promise that Flynn clearly lives up to with Gone girl. Cammile is a reporter in Chicago, who is forced to go back to her small home town of Wind Gap to cover a story of a suspected serial killer. The book very cleverly weaves her relationship with her mother, step-sister, old friends and the hunt for the killer. It is an exceptionally tense read with all the major characters seeming to be on the edge of doing something dangerous, whilst nowhere near as polished as Gone girl it is still a fantastic book with plenty of twists and turns that stays with you for days after you have finished it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Sharp and, unsurprisingly, cutting, 29 April 2015
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Kindle Edition)
Another cracking read from Gillian Flynn. The initial scene setting and tone were brilliant. Here was an MC who was almost utterly selfish and had made a lifetime career out of staying that way, out of being the victim and living off sympathy. And she has some hideously unacceptable thoughts, especially when she is ousted! And yet there is great Voice here and I found myself devouring the book. The big reveal, when it came, was little anti-climatic. It's not that I couldn't buy it, more that I was expecting something a bit more. And that's around the point when I really started wanting to kick the MC's brother's arse for being such a blithering idiot in the first place... But still, if characters did not get themselves into such tangles, why would we want to read about them?

The Kill Clubs are a creepy notion. I'm fully aware that they're out there and that there's a darker side to the reverence reserved for current pop idols and film stars but there is something voyeuristic and deeply distasteful about groups of people who come together to celebrate a hobby which is essentially spying in on family scandal, tragedy and grief. Still it acted as a good agent provocateur for the MC who otherwise might have stayed sunk in her depression and continued believing what was easiest rather than seeking out the truth. Her journey was a really enjoyable one to follow, her growth as a person is not unbelievable and I liked the fact that she wasn't nice and all positive about her life - why the hell should she be?! But she still had the grit to keep going. Sometimes she is deplorable but you can't help rooting for her and this is something Flynn does very well, shifting and playing with our sympathies whether a character is someone we want to identify with or not. Not as acerbic as Gone Girl and slightly less disturbing that Sharp Objects, this is a must read for crime/thriller fan who like a bit of family drama thrown in.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Twisted and disturbing, 6 Mar. 2015
This review is from: Sharp Objects (Kindle Edition)
Having read Flynn’s ‘Gone Girl’ a few months ago, I was keen to see what her other books were like. ‘Sharp Objects’ doesn’t disappoint and follows the same crime/thriller genre that kept me guessing almost until the very end. However, I found the narrative quite suffocating and twisted, and the protagonist, Camille, rather disturbing.

Without wanting to give too much away, I found the plot development rather slow and dense. It took me a while to really get into the story and I think this reflects Flynn’s writing style as this was the same for me when reading ‘Gone Girl’. Perhaps I was trying to compare the two novels because I had enjoyed ‘Gone Girl’ so much, it distracted me a little from what was happening in the opening chapters. But writing this review now, I guess the suffocating narrative simply reinforces Camille’s home town of Wind Gap and how the community have reacted to the murders of two young girls.

As readers learn more about Camille and her family, you cannot help but be shocked by the revelations. This is what I found cleverly disturbing and what I consider to be the main hook of the story. Finding out about Camille’s childhood and growing up in Wind Gap, it is hardly surprising that she carries such emotional baggage and it makes you question whether she can really handle investigating these murders. In addition, the stark contrast between her and her half-sister, Amma, really blew me away. I forgot the massive age difference between the two based on how they behaved and this I feel became another element to the narrative’s development.

So, to consider this novel twisted and disturbing is, in its own right, a compliment. Once you are hooked and get a “feel” for what ‘Sharp Objects’ is offering, you cannot help but follow Camille on her journey. The ending was full of unexpected surprises that redeemed the slow start for me. If you enjoyed ‘Gone Girl’ then definitely pick up this read. Like me, you might find yourself comparing the two novels, but I feel that ‘Sharp Objects’ certainly deserves an identity of its own.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 288 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Sharp Objects
Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn (Paperback - 17 Sept. 2007)
£6.29
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews