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86 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark places of the heart and in the mind.
Sharp Objects was not a fluke.Sharp Objects If you thought Gillian Flynn's debut novel was twisted and dark then you get more of the same with this blood speckled book of tragedy.
Libby Day,the survivor of massacre that occurs one cold night at her farmhouse home that wipes out her mother and two sisters and leaves her shivering,hiding out in the weeds from the...
Published on 4 Nov 2011 by vi

versus
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too dark for me
I am a big fan of complicated twisting crime novels but this one was too dark for me. I don't mind descriptive, dark themes but they need to have a purpose other than being grotesque andI don't feel that they did in this case. I persevered to find out the outcome of the mystery but I wouldn't call it enjoyable.
Published 13 months ago by V A Rock


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86 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dark places of the heart and in the mind., 4 Nov 2011
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This review is from: Dark Places (Paperback)
Sharp Objects was not a fluke.Sharp Objects If you thought Gillian Flynn's debut novel was twisted and dark then you get more of the same with this blood speckled book of tragedy.
Libby Day,the survivor of massacre that occurs one cold night at her farmhouse home that wipes out her mother and two sisters and leaves her shivering,hiding out in the weeds from the killer,hoping he doesn't find her,believing that the perpetrator of this horrific crime may in fact be her own brother.
With that background, we meet Libby some years later, a cold, cynical woman living on a charity bank account filled with donations from the soft-hearted and sympathetic. A bank account that is quickly running dry. With her brother in jail for life, Libby is contacted by a mysterious club who are convinced that her brother Ben is not the real killer and despite telling herself they're wrong, Libby quickly finds herself questioning what exactly happened that fateful night...and who was really guilty and, as we discover, the suspects are many.
This book is a brilliant mixture of mystery and horror. As Libby's mind is in a constant state of indecision as she discovers new information, so we, as the reader,are left pondering,trying to second-guess and when we also flash-back to the day leading upto the massacre from both Libby's mom and Ben's perspective, we get even more drawn into the dark desperation and gloom the whole family was barely coping with.The little secrets people hide and the white lies people tell, brings about injustice and violence here.
Flynn's writing is exquisite, detailed and dense with description that delves deep into the psyches of all involved and it's never a comfortable or safe place to be. Nearly everybody has some layer of threat and menace to them. There are many twists and turns along the way making this book hard to put down and even harder to forget once you've finished it.
An excellent second novel that is both raw, nasty, brutal, honest, enthralling and sad. I didn't guess the ending...will you? Enjoy. Thank you.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely Gripping!, 18 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Dark Places (Paperback)
I will start my review by saying I loved this book. This isn't the type of book I would usually read. My normal genre is romance, young adult and that kind of thing. So it was different to read a book from a thirty something year old woman. It was also different there being no romantic side of this book.

I really enjoyed the way the author wrote this book. Giving snippets of what happened on the day of the murder between chapters.

From the first few pages of this book you can really feel Libby's depression. It's really sad. You get the idea that she has lived a horrible life since that day of the murders.

I loved the last few chapters of this book, I was totally shocked.

I love how it all came together at the end. It was pretty amazing and I will definitely read more mystery books in the future.

I give this book 5 out of 5 and would 100% recommend no matter what genre you read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Too dark for me, 5 July 2013
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This review is from: Dark Places (Kindle Edition)
I am a big fan of complicated twisting crime novels but this one was too dark for me. I don't mind descriptive, dark themes but they need to have a purpose other than being grotesque andI don't feel that they did in this case. I persevered to find out the outcome of the mystery but I wouldn't call it enjoyable.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Accurately titled, 23 July 2011
By 
Mr. G. Battle (Essex, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dark Places (Paperback)
Dark Places is a standalone second novel from Flynn, evidencing she is an author with imagination and talent. The only similarity between the two is the narrative style, edgy and brooding, dark yet not depressing. Following the sole survivor of an horrendous killing spree, the central character can be described as nothing less than damaged - ideal territory for Flynn then. Flicking back and forwards between then and now, this is a tilted murder-mystery novel, not conforming to the usual stereotypes and trappings of the genre. Libby Day is definitely not your archetypal detective however she's a very engaging vehicle for Dark Places, allowing the plot to move in to unusual territories. The final reveal is somewhat disappointing however getting there is great fun. A gritty and dirty novel which cements Flynn's presence on the bookshelves.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Scarey and effective, 10 Jun 2009
By 
Mrs. Katharine Kirby "Kate" (HELSTON, Cornwall United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Dark Places (Hardcover)
Not my usual choice as it is so dark as the title suggests but I enjoyed the way it worked out and the slow burning, tense background story. Set in America with more than one unlikely heroine who you do come to appreciate, the eventual resolution is sadly heartwarming and understandable. Rewarding and surprising, you have all the clues but they don't immediately jump out at you, the layers of the story are impressive. I would read other books by her now.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Clever and Compelling., 16 Oct 2009
By 
J. Cook "Anna" (London) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dark Places (Hardcover)
This is a dark book indeed - and aptly named. I read thrillers fairly regularly and wouldn't say I'm particularly squeamish or easily scared, but this book has an acute sense of realism that I found quite disturbing. The cast of characters are truly unlikeable and I had little empathy for even the main protaganist, Libby, and although not someone who has to like the people I'm reading about, in this case it just added to the sense of gloom. I thought the cattle slaughter scene was one step too far and really didn't feel the need to read that bit and consequently skipped the whole chapter. However, it is a horribly compelling book and although I was desperate to know the outcome, paradoxically I shied away from picking it up.
It's not what I would call an 'enjoyable' read, but it does have an original plot and it did make my heart pound in dread, which are what thrillers are supposed to do. Read this if you're not easily unnerved, but if you have a slightly sensitive nature I'd leave it well alone.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gripping novel, 25 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Dark Places (Kindle Edition)
I found this book to be so addictive. You had to keep reading to solve the mystery, and as you slowly warm to Libby, the main character, you find yourself willing her to find the answers she sought. I did not guess the ending, and the last quarter of the book had me gripped. I had to know what happened!! I want to read it again so I can follow the clues and hints that are littered throughout the novel.

Flynn is a very talented crime writer - you can tell she is well-researched and has planned every last detail of her stories and her characters. As a reader, you really appreciate this and it makes the reading experience so much more enjoyable. I have now read three of her novels and would recommend every single one - you won't be disappointed!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully raw and rough., 19 Sep 2009
This review is from: Dark Places (Hardcover)
What I loved about this book was the ability of Gillian to write without cliches, full on and head on through Libby's life, inside her mind as well as thoughts and sincere feelings. Flynn's book is so engagig, honest and disarming that if you like thrillers and crime novels this is by far one of the best I have read in ages, because is , like many have said, it delivers more than that, is has humanity on it that this book won't be one of those that you forget as soon as you finish it, stays with you, makes you think, makes you feel the way she feels, the whole family feels.

The plot is written through Libby's eyes but also involves the rest of the familly and little by little you discover them, one by one, you never guess the ending, I didn't, at the end it didn't really matter that much as it was a great Journey for me to read it, although all gets tied up and it had a closure.

Has been much much better than The Lost Symbol (Dan Brown) that I finished just a couple of days a go and I forgot all about it.

Read it.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Compelling and Voracious Tale that Will Set You Off Kilter..., 19 Feb 2010
This review is from: Dark Places (Hardcover)
"Dark Places" is a story that will stay with you long after the read, a troubled contemplation that when reflected upon later, you will end up asking yourself why your reality has just tilted slightly off kilter.

Gillian Flynn has taken the reader to desperate depths as she paints the tale of slovenly Libby Day, whose survival of a brutal farm massacre at age seven has tainted every day of her adult life. With her brother behind bars for nearly 24 years now, convicted of the murders, and the money running out, Libby is offered the opportunity from an unlikely source to sift through the ruins of her life, and probe the memories, the dark places, to find out who was really behind the massacre.

But such growth does not come easily, and truth does not come without a cost, and somewhere out there a murderer(s) is still running around free.

The mediocre, even the mundane everyday tasks for Libby seem almost insurmountable obstacles. Uncovering the truth will certainly be treacherous for her. She is a protagonist filled with bile that has been steeping her innards since the moment she ran stumbling out in the snow from the bloody house. Flynn's unvarnished character portrayal of the Day Family in the time leading up to the massacre, and through Libby's recollections is excruciatingly humble, and painful.

It is a tale that exposes the vein of a poverty-stricken family hunkered down against the world. An air of malevolence surrounding them, like a storm ready to break. And then at times the rare glimpse into the soul: the mother Patty who is single-handedly trying to keep the family together and fed despite imminent foreclosure. A mother who will end up paying the ultimate price to save her family. Ben, the son who's spiraling down a sinister path from which there is no escape. Runner, the mean-spirited dead-beat dad who harasses the family. These are just a few of Flynn's crowning character achievements.

All of these personalities and situations are a recipe for malignancy at their Kinnakee farm. Flynn is ruthless, and ferocious in her descriptions, as she is honest. Libby Day is not anyone's idea of a heroine, but she's persevering. Flynn places the reader on the same level as Day. The awkward journey of self-discovery is taken hand-in-hand. Just as easily as Libby slips the remnants of other peoples lives in her roomy kleptomaniac pockets, so do we. Perhaps someday too, we too can dig in those boxes under the stairs, expose the skeletons and stare them down without fear. Purge those dark places as well as Libby has compellingly done.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best opening chapters ever written..., 23 Nov 2009
This review is from: Dark Places (Hardcover)
Gillian Flynn is a writer with a massive future ahead of her; if you enjoyed Sharp Objects her debut novel, you will absolutory love this.

Gillian demonstrates in the first chapter what an amazing seemingly natural skill she has. The story is told in first voice by a number of different characters, the plot is easy to follow yet does not have all the usual obvious hooks you'd expect when reading a book of this genre.

The mood of the 1980's in the Depression is perfectly captured; the main character Libby is someone you instantly dislike, yet due to the fast moving story you feel an urgent need to continue following her journey.

Even if you're not a reader of crime, I guarantee the opening chapter of this book will get you reading to the last page. One of the best opening chapters ever written... I'd love to learn how someone can invent such an awful, disturbing story, yet write with such skill, finesse and create such perfectly crafted sentences. Oh to spend the evening chatting with Gillian Flynn...
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Dark Places
Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
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