There’s something thrilling and forbidden in being inside one’s head, sort of like inhabiting another body, which in itself defies all laws of physics. In reading this book, at least I get to escape with the author’s permission and without the hassle of physically losing myself.
In Gillian Flynn’s best-selling thriller, one gets the pleasure (and the creeps) of being inside the head of not just one character, but two—–Nick and Amy Dunne, the seemingly perfect husband and wife, whose complicated relationship and its consequences will leave the reader guessing until the very last page.
The story starts on the day of Nick and Amy’s 5th wedding anniversary, when Amy suddenly disappears, leaving Nick to solve the puzzle.
Nick is the man you love to hate—-handsome, but weak, while Amy, it seems, is your understanding wife, who allows her husband to whisk her away from New York so that they can start a new life and be close to Nick’s sick parents in Missouri.
Both are unemployed and are living in a neighborhood that had seen more foreclosures and in a city where a once, newly-built mall teeming with activity is now closed and populated with the homeless and other people out of work.
It’s bleak. It’s grim. The perfect backdrop for a clueless and socially inept husband whose wife has gone missing.
I felt the creeps right from the first few pages, when Nick was describing Amy’s skull and when he paused at the bottom step of the stairs on the morning of their anniversary, as if dreading the encounter with his wife, who was slicing and dicing their breakfast in the kitchen.
It’s a very odd introductory scene——we don’t see the husband and wife talking to each other because we only read Nick’s thoughts that fateful morning and by the time we hear of Amy in the second chapter, we are presented with her diary entry from way back, before she was married to Nick.
So this structure is alternating—-Nick narrates the present while Amy recounts in her diary the past until we reach the twist and the heart, the wicked heart of Nick and Amy’s story.
A real page-turner, this thriller. It’s also thoughtful in that Ms. Flynn reveals some truths about intimate relationships, the truth of never really knowing someone until that someone is out to get you.
The ending was also perfect and tragic at the same time because nobody gets revenge. Nobody gets the upper hand. Just a life without secrets anymore.