Dark Places. A mini review.

Dark Places

By Gillian Flynn

Rating: 4/5 Stairs

darkplacesI’ve read Gone Girl, and I wasn’t sure what to expect in this predecessor. Dark Places reveals itself slowly, but keeping a steady, page-turning pace.

At just 7 years old, Libby Day survived a horrific slaughtering of her family in the early hours of 3 January 1985 at their farm house in Kinnakee, Kansas. 25 years later, Libby finds herself mixed up with a group of people with an interest in “The Satan Sacrifice of Kinnakee Kansas.”

Everyone’s got a theory, but there’s one thing everyone in the group agrees on – except Libby – Ben wasn’t the killer that night. Now, 25 years after the murder, Libby begins investigating the events of 2 January 1985, trying to piece together her family’s last day and what went wrong. And she starts to doubt herself a little bit – did her testimony convict the wrong person? Was her 15 year old brother Ben actually innocent?

Ms. Flynn flips the narrative back and forth between Libby Day in the present, and both her mother, Patty Day, and her brother, Ben Day, on that fateful day of January 2, 1985. As grown-up Libby begins to uncover the day’s events, we hear voices from the past (Patty and Ben’s perspectives) to help pull the puzzle together.

It was an interesting read, and I’m not sure why it wasn’t a 5 stair book for me; it was a really, really good book. Maybe it was the satanic piece, or the fact that I just didn’t like some of the characters. (Although I didn’t like all the characters in Gone Girl either, and looking back at Goodreads, I rated it 5 stairs.) It could just be that I’ve read so many fantastic books lately. I listened to the audio book, and sometimes when it was Ben’s narrative I was just ready to get back to Libby. If I would have had the book, I probably would have flipped ahead to catch back up with Libby.

Definitely a page turner with many twists and turns throughout. I kept thinking, “Oh yeah. Ben definitely did it.” And then a few pages later, “He couldn’t have done it! It must have been someone else.” And then back to thinking, “Yep. It was Ben.”

Don’t go into Dark Places expecting another Gone Girl, as this book is a different premise. If you like these type of twisted mysteries, you will enjoy it for sure.

6 thoughts on “Dark Places. A mini review.

  1. We seem to love the same books for the same reasons, but I read this one…..and…..let me explain: I adored Gone Girl for many reasons ( many did not) and I loved Girl on a Train ( many hated that); however, Dark Places had to have been one of the most depressing and disturbing books I have ever read.
    In my GR’s review, I believe I gave it four stars, and that was because it was well crafted, character driven and really showed an understanding of that region of our country; however, it was DARK and the characters were unlikable, and it really made me understand the poverty that reigns and how people try to deal with it despite horrible repercussions. I have Sharp Objects, but I have not touched a Flynn book since.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes – this book is very depressing and disturbing. I did feel for Patty, a struggling single mom with too many mouths to feed. I thought it was very poignant that even 7 year old Libby knew her mom had more kids than she could care for. I did like Libby even though her character is very unlikeable. I felt like she was moving out of her hard shell as she sought out the truth. I couldn’t stand Ben’s friends at all. Not sure yet how I feel about Ben. I don’t think I like him.

      One of my friends said “All I did when I read that book was look at Gillian Flynn’s picture and say to myself ‘She looks normal.'” I felt the same way. It was a disturbing read at times.


      • I did the same thing, more or less, about Gillian Flynn; the books was so real that it seems impossible Flynn did not personally live this existence. If this is a work of fiction, then Flynn is a master of creation, but I came away feeling awful from the experience/

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Eleanor & Park: Beautiful. Lovely. Heartbreaking. | Hidden Staircase

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