I just finished Gillian Flynn's "Gone Girl," which was one of the library's most checked-out book of 2012. I read it because my book group chose it. It's not something I would pick, but the point of being in a book group is to try new things.
There are no heroes in this novel. There are plenty of formulaic characters, but the plot takes so many twists that their flimsiness is almost always secondary to the plot. The action slows down considerably toward the end, when psychological maneuvers take center stage.
One thing that makes this book so readable is that most of the action takes place in Missouri; folks pop in and out of St. Louis. The muggy summer is aptly described, but at least one of the main characters cannot abide our fellow citizens.
This is not a feel-good book. In places it is vulgar and crude. But, at the end, most of the loose ends are tied. I say most because I am sure I'll be able to out-think this author and find some way to blow the lid off the plot's credibility. Therein lies the evidence of Flynn's skill, for in making me ponder the clues long after finishing the last page, she shows the similarity between me and her bizarre protagonist.
--Julie C., Headquarters