Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
(Broadway Books, 2010, 350 pages)
I impulsively grabbed this off the shelf at the library to see if I would like some of Flynn’s earlier work more than I liked Gone Girl. I was surprised that I got as engrossed in this book as I did. The thriller/mystery genre isn’t really one I pick up often, but Flynn had me intrigued to see where the book would go.
Libby Day’s family was killed in what many believe to be an act of Devil worship when she was just a little girl. The youngest of four, Libby’s older sisters and mother were brutally murdered. Her older brother, Ben, was charged with the crime and put in prison.
Libby had a rough time growing up and now she’s an adult who can’t seem to bring herself to want to find a job or to commit to much of a life. She lives off money that was raised shortly after the murders but now the money is running out. This need for funds leads her to a group called The Kill Club. The club is obsessed with murderous crimes and some members are willing to pay to get a chance to meet and ask Libby questions.
The members of The Kill Club intrigued by Libby’s case seem convinced that Ben isn’t really the killer. With their funding Libby is willing to look into the case again and see if there was something, or someone, that was missed. Maybe her memory of the night is less clear than she thought it was…
If you’ve read Gone Girl and then pick up this title there’s no question that Flynn has a knack for creating unlikable female characters. Libby isn’t really someone you like, even though you’re hoping that she’ll find answers to her family’s tragic past.
If you enjoyed Gone Girl I’d recommend looking into Flynn’s backlist. This was an entertaining read, especially if you’re interested in thrillers and mysteries. I’ll be curious to see if I like her first novel, Sharp Objects.