by Christina Morgan Cree
A “boy meets girl” psychological thriller.
Nick and Amy find each other in NYC. He’s a journalist and a small town southern boy, sensitive and genteel. She is the bright and confident daughter of writer/parents who used her as the inspiration for their best selling young reader’s series, Amazing Amy. She also does a little bit of writing on the side.
Nick and Amy fall in love and get married. Then the recession hits, Nick loses his job and they move back to his home town of Carthage, Missouri. The happily ever after comes to an abrupt halt and real life settles in. Nick uses the last of the money, Amy’s trust fund, to open a bar. Things between them continue to unravel and they grow more and more distant. When Amy suddenly goes missing from her home under suspicious circumstances on the morning of their fifth wedding anniversary, the police start probing and Nick looks guiltier, as the evidence stacks against him.
It’s looking very much like foul play yet he insists he’s being set up by his cold and calculating, psychotic wife. Things only get more nebulous as we try to sift through the testimonies of the different, yet often unreliable characters.
The book is divided into two sections: the first half alternates between Nick’s firsthand account of the present and Amy’s journal entries leading up to her disappearance. The second half switches to a conventional narrative, giving us a broader picture of what is going on.
Unfortunately, I can’t say much about the plot without giving too much away. I enjoyed the way each section was written in a different format and the perspective shifts allow the reader to gather information – some of which may not make sense or be accurate – and investigate. With each new section of the book the reader is let in to a deeper level of the character’s personalities and reality. No one is the good guy. These are flawed, complex and layered characters and much of the time I both loved and hated them.
The book is full of many twists and game changers. Trying to uncover the truth leads the reader down a dark and twisted rabbit hole into the psyches of the two main characters. Just as in real life, there may be no real truth.
The ending got mixed reviews. I wasn’t crazy about the ending either, but I felt it was true to the characters. After getting to know the personalities of the characters, I felt the ending was inevitable.
The movie of Gone Girl is out this weekend.