This is my review of Dark Places by Gillian Flynn.
Yes, the same Gillian Flynn who wrote Gone Girl, that masterpiece of mindfuckery. And this novel is much of the same.
Libby Day is a bitter woman with a terrible past that has left her scarred, both mentally and physically. As a child, her brother Ben murdered the rest of their family, and was subsequently thrown into prison for life. She has lived most of her life as a hermit, getting by on donations from well wishers. But now she’s short on funds, and willing to do anything to make a living (except, God forbid, get a job). She becomes involved with a group of oddballs who get their kicks from solving crimes that have received a lot of media attention- and they’re convinced that Ben Day is innocent.
They pay Libby to help them with their investigation, and she is forced to revisit repressed memories and approach estranged relatives. Eventually, all is revealed and the magic *DNA evidence* saves the day (pun intended).
Gillian Flynn’s writing style really stands out in this book- the gritty, dreary atmosphere is palpable. She strings the reader along with vague, improbable clues, revealed just when it seems that Libby and co. have reached a dead end.
Overall, this one isn’t as good as Gone Girl, but it makes for a good weekend read. Recommended if you are a fan of gloom, doom and crime thrillers. 3.5/5