Quick Book Review: Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

I had it for a long time but I just never got around to reading it. Oops. But I did! I finished! I finiiiiished! (Yes, I am ecstatic because it took me aaaages for some reason… aka coursework, stress, mocks, stress, university prep, stress…) I also promised myself not to watch the film without reading the book first. So this novel is 432 pages long and I will admit it only got really interesting towards the middle because – SURPRISE! – it only gets darker and more messed up than anyone thought. And the twisted person gets his/her way in the end. Hurrah! Yay justice system! (Don’t even get me started on America’s corrupt justice system…)

Here’s the blurb:

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media–as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents–the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter–but is he really a killer?
As the cops close in, every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn’t do it, where is that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden in the back of her bedroom closet?

Anyway this novel will have you guessing. I promise. But it will also get you bored (beginning), suspicious of literally everyone, even yourself, your family, and your nonexistent child (middle of beginning), freaked out (middle), excited (beginning of the end), aaaaand then it feels lackluster towards the end. Nope. Not having that. Strictly no bull zone.

So it’s a tad bit unrealistic, but we all love that, don’t we? It was quite intelligent but so unreliable as it MESSED YOU UP BIG TIME. I loved this inconsistency, the way it was written with the whole dual perspectives narrative… each of the characters make each other look both amazing and disgusting. Good luck figuring out the truth.

If you ever want to read this, I apologise in advance. I really want you – shoutout to my (0) readers out there – to read it but as I’m still psychologically a mess, I’m probably making it sound either much better or much worse than it is and I quote ‘this book needs to die, while I pet it lovingly’. Take your pick. (See what I did? I’m unreliable. Ha!) If you don’t want to read it, fine by me, just watch it.

I am currently reading Anna and the French Kiss… stay tuned, my precious fans

-Lara, cool girl (giggles maniacally)


Quick Book Review: We Were Liars by E Lockhart

 “A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.”

Cadence Sinclair is the presumably seventeen-year-old narrator of We Were Liars and continues to suffer from injuries she sustained during ‘Summer 15’ on her grandfather’s private island, which she usually visits every summer. Now, during Summer 17, she struggles to remember the reasons behind her injuries, as well as the circumstances leading up to her depressed state.

Sounds pretty promising, doesn’t it? Well, the premise is great… the execution, however, not so much. To be fair it was getting late, but I had to finish reading. And I honestly expected more. It wasn’t a bad novel at all, but it wasn’t that good. Anyway, I’m going to try my best not to spoil this for any potential readers but… I cried. Then again, I cry all the time – out of joy …and sadness… but mostly from onions aka the Satan of vegetables.

Let’s go all high school on this novel and judge it…

What Went Well:

The inclusion of fairytales and references to King Lear and Wuthering Heights were very interesting and original, and I thought it worked.

I could relate to the philosophical aspect of the novel.

The presentation of ‘struggle’ from a privileged perspective was realistic.

The suspense did, admittedly, captivate me.

…again, the premise itself was lovely.

What Did Not Go Well:

The occasional fragmented writing style and indecipherable metaphors did not work well at all.

Character development was weak. Not many of the characters were likeable and the ones who were likeable were developed quite poorly.

The title of the book (We Were Liars, in case you didn’t know) baffles me especially since it was the main thing that lured me into reading this in the first place (the blurb is rather cryptic)… You’ll understand once, and only if, you read it.

…the execution was not to my taste.

Rating: 3.5/5

Why: The idea behind We Were Liars was clever and I really do love dark, eerie novels. The issues tackled were contemporary yet traditional, and seeing through the lens of an upper-class teenager made this novel worth reading.  Nevertheless, I think I set my expectations too high for this novel, but it’s still a pretty good read… just don’t say I didn’t tell you so.

Best Quotes: “We are liars. We are beautiful and privileged. We are cracked and broken.”

“Be a little kinder than you have to.”

“Better than chocolate, being with you last night. Silly me, I thought that nothing was better than chocolate.”

*SPOILER ALERT*: Spoiler alerts usually attract my attention even more but if you’ve watched the Sixth Sense… I doubt you’ll rate this highly. I mean, come on, M. Night Shyamalan, anyone?

-Lara, bibliophile who is sort-of okay. And stuff.