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Outstanding Thriller, Well-Crafted Suspense

4 Stars

Nick Dunne comes home on his fifth anniversary, only to find his wife missing and signs of foul play. His confusion and despair deepen as all signs point to him as the murderer and he loses the trust of those closest to him. In alternating first-person narratives, from Nick's perspective and his missing wife's perspective (through her diary), we learn disturbing details about both of them that make the disappearance even more complicated than it appears at first glance.

Despite the length, this is a very fast-paced novel that keeps you interested all the way through. Lots of interesting twists to the plot, some role reversals, and an unusual perspective. Foreshadowing is well-done to set up a lot of the twists that occur later in the novel. Beyond that, I can't say much without risking spoilers, but needless to say it was a terrifically entertaining book, which I finished in just a few days, despite 400 pages of small print in the edition I was reading.

I almost gave it five stars, but the very end lacked some credibility, in my opinion. There were also a few instances where I thought the detective work took some leaps that weren't supported by the facts. Flynn also has a few verbal ticks that I found distracting, such as multiple characters saying “you don't get to ...” a lot and overusing “surreal” (despite ironically commenting on the overuse of “surreal” in the narrative). Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the book and want to see the movie now.