Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Dark Places is Gillian Flynn's sophomore follow-up to the bestselling Gone Girl.
Libby Day is a nasty piece of work but she has a good excuse. When she was seven years old her mother and two sisters were murdered in the family home. Libby hid and survived. At the trial she testified that difficult teenaged (possibly Satanist) brother Ben was the killer and he was sentenced to life in prison. The novel begins 25 years after the murders. Libby is now 32 years old and living alone after alienating the few living relatives she has. The trust fund set up for her after the murders is almost depleted and she doesn't know what she will do to survive. Indeed she is such a misfit it is difficult to see her getting or holding gainful employment.
Then out of the blue a representative of the Kill Club, a group obsessed with famous murders and murderers, contacts her. Members believe Ben is innocent and want to prove it. They offer Libby cash to interview people who were involved with her family at the time of the murders, including her imprisoned brother and worthless father.
The Kill Club strikes me as preposterous. I know there are people out there who are fascinated by true crime and enjoy armchair sleuthing but I can't imagine them wanting to lay down big bucks to prove their theories.
That said, the story moves along at a good clip, told by those who were there the night of the murders.
People, myself included, like a twisty mystery and this one is perfect for a quick summer read. Be warned though that the characters are all unlikeable and there is graphic violence. Gone Girl has been made into a movie and I suspect that Dark Places will make it to the screen as well.