Dimensions: 432 pages, 9.38 × 6.39 × 1.42 in
Published: June 5, 2012
Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 030758836X
ISBN - 13: 9780307588364
About the Book
Flynn's toxic mix of sharp-edged wit with deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds readers at every turn. When his wife disappears on their anniversary, Nick starts having cringe-worthy daydreams and becomes oddly evasive, eschewing his golden boy past.
Read from the Book
Chapter One Nick Dunne the day of When I think of my wife, I always think of her head. The shape of it, to begin with. The very first time I saw her, it was the back of the head I saw, and there was something lovely about it, the angles of it. Like a shiny, hard corn kernel or a riverbed fossil. She had what the Victorians would call finely shaped head. You could imagine the skull quite easily. I’d know her head anywhere. And what’s inside it. I think of that too: her mind. Her brain, all those coils, and her thoughts shuttling through those coils like fast, frantic centipedes. Like a child, I picture opening her skull, unspooling her brain and sifting through it, trying to catch and pin down her thoughts. What are you thinking, Amy? The question I’ve asked most often during our marriage, if not out loud, if not to the person who could answer. I suppose these questions stormcloud over every marriage: What are you thinking? How are you feeling? Who are you? What have we done to each other? What will we do? My eyes flipped open at exactly six a.m. This was no avian fluttering of the lashes, no gentle blink toward consciousness. The awakening was mechanical. A spooky ventriloquist- dummy click of the lids: The world is black and then, showtime! 6- 0- 0 the clock said— in my face, first thing I saw. 6- 0- 0. It felt different. I rarely woke at such a rounded time. I was a man of jagged risings: 8:43, 11:51, 9:26. My life was ala
From the Publisher
Marriage can be a real killer. One of the
most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York
Times bestseller Gillian Flynn takes that statement to its darkest
place in this unputdownable masterpiece about a marriage gone
terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed
that her work "draws you in and keeps you reading with the
force of a pure but nasty addiction." Gone Girl's toxic mix of
sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a
nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every
turn. On a warm summer morning in North
Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne's fifth wedding
anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being
made when Nick's clever and beautiful wife disappears from their
rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick
isn't doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about
the slope and shape of his wife's head, but passages from Amy''s
diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone
dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and
the media-as well as Amy's fiercely doting parents-the town golden
boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate
behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he's definitely bitter-but is
he really a killer? As the cops close in,
every couple in town is soon wondering how well they know the one
that they love. With his twin sister, Margo, at his side, Nick
stands by his innocence. Trouble is, if Nick didn't do it, where is
that beautiful wife? And what was in that silvery gift box hidden
in the back of her bedroom closet? With
her razor-sharp writing and trademark psychological insight,
Gillian Flynn delivers a fast-paced, devilishly dark, and
ingeniously plotted thriller that confirms her status as one of the
hottest writers around.
About the Author
GILLIAN FLYNN is the author of the runaway hit
Gone Girl, an international sensation that has spent more
than ninety-five weeks on the New York Times bestseller
list. Her work has been published in forty languages. Gone
Girl is soon to be a major motion picture from Twentieth
Century Fox. Flynn's previous novels, Dark Places and
Dagger Award winner Sharp Objects, were also New York
Times bestsellers. A former writer and critic for
Entertainment Weekly, she lives in Chicago with her
husband and children.
“Ice-pick-sharp… Spectacularly sneaky… Impressively cagey… Gone Girl is Ms. Flynn’s dazzling breakthrough. It is wily, mercurial, subtly layered and populated by characters so well imagined that they’re hard to part with — even if, as in Amy’s case, they are already departed. And if you have any doubts about whether Ms. Flynn measures up to Patricia Highsmith’s level of discreet malice, go back and look at the small details. Whatever you raced past on a first reading will look completely different the second time around.” —Janet Maslin, New York Times “An ingenious and viperish thriller… It’s going to make Gillian Flynn a star… The first half of Gone Girl is a nimble, caustic riff on our Nancy Grace culture and the way in which ''''The butler did it'''' has morphed into ''''The husband did it.'''' The second half is the real stunner, though. Now I really am going to shut up before I spoil what instantly shifts into a great, breathless read. Even as Gone Girl grows truly twisted and wild, it says smart things about how tenuous power relations are between men and women, and how often couples are at the mercy of forces beyond their control. As if that weren’t enough, Flynn has created a genuinely creepy villain you don''t see coming. People love to talk about the banality of evil. You’re about to meet a maniac you could fall in love with.” — Jeff Giles, Entertai
A Reader's Guide for Gone Girl by Gillian
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In order to provide reading groups with the most informed and
thought-provoking questions possible, it is necessary to reveal
important aspects of the plot of this novel. If you have not
finished reading Gone Girl, we respectfully suggest that
you wait before reviewing this guide.
Deceit, infidelity, suspicion . . . and that's only the
When Nick and Amy fall in love, they are the confident, handsome
man and the beautiful, privileged young woman embracing in front of
their Brooklyn Heights brownstone and sharing a laugh at the
expense of less blissful couples. Eventually, their picture-perfect
union falters: Amy grows weary of the "cool girl" image she's
portrayed; Nick gives rein to old impulses and easy lies. As with
many marriages, friction works its way into everyday exchanges, and
the glow of the honeymoon fades. But with Amy and Nick, that
fracture takes a much darker turn.
In a story full of surprising twists, Gillian Flynn's Gone
Girl tracks the course of a marriage gone spectacularly wrong.
For the protagonists, it's a psychological battle with everything
at stake; for the reader, an excavation of human failings and
incredible depths of betrayal . . . and a mystery whose resolution
is every bit as troubling as its beginning.
Questions and Topics for Discussion
1. Do you like Nick or Amy? Did you find yourself picking a side?
Do you think the author intends for us to like them? Why or why
2. Does the author intend for us to think of Nick or Amy as the
stronger writer? Do you perceive one or the other as a stronger
writer, based on their narration/journal entries? Why?
3. Do you think Amy and Nick both believe in their marriage at the
4. Nick, ever conscious of the way he is being perceived, reflects
on the images that people choose to portray in the
world-constructed, sometimes plagiarized roles that we present as
our personalities. Discuss the ways in which the characters-and
their opinions of each other-are influenced by our culture's avid
consumption of TV shows, movies, and websites, and our need to fit
each other into these roles.
5. Discuss Amy's false diary, both as a narrative strategy by the
author and as a device used by the character. How does the author
use it to best effect? How does Amy use it?
6. What do you make of Nick's seeming paranoia on the day of his
fifth anniversary, when he wakes with a start and reports feeling,
You have been seen?
7. As experienced consumers of true crime and tragedy, modern
"audiences" tend to expect each crime to fit a specific mold: a
story, a villain, a heroine. How does this phenomenon influence the
way we judge news stories? Does it have an impact on the criminal
justice system? Consider the example of the North Carthage police,
and also Tanner Bolt's ongoing advice to Nick.
8. What is Go's role in the book? Why do you think the author
wrote her as Nick's twin? Is she a likable character?
9. Discuss Amy's description of the enduring myth of the "cool
girl"-and her conviction that a male counterpart (seemingly
flawless to women) does not exist. Do you agree? Why does she
assume the role if she seems to despise it? What benefit do you
think she derives from the act?
10. Is there some truth to Amy's description of the "dancing
monkeys"-her friends' hapless partners who are forced to make
sacrifices and perform "sweet" gestures to prove their love? How is
this a counterpoint to the "cool girl"?
11. What do you think of Marybeth and Rand Elliott? Is the image
they present sincere? What do you think they believe about Amy?
12. How does the book deal with the divide between perception and
reality, or between public image and private lives? Which
characters are most skillful at navigating this divide, and
13. How does the book capture the feel of the recession-the ending
of jobs and contraction of whole industries; economic and
geographical shifts; real estate losses and abandoned communities.
Are some of Nick and Amy's struggles emblematic of the time period?
Are there any parts of the story that feel unique to this time
14. While in hiding, Amy begins to explore what the "real" Amy
likes and dislikes. Do you think this is a true exploration of her
feelings, or is she acting out yet another role? In these passages,
what does she mean when she refers to herself as "I" in
15. What do you think of Amy's quizzes-and "correct" answers-that
appear throughout the book? As a consistent thread between her
Amazing Amy childhood and her adult career, what does her
quiz-writing style reveal about Amy's true personality and her
understanding of the world?
16. Do Nick and Amy have friends? Consider Nick's assurance that
Noelle was deluded in her claims of friendship with Amy, and also
the friends described in Amy's journal. How "real" are these
friendships? What do you think friendship means to each of
17. What was the relationship between Amy and Nick's father? Do
you think the reader is meant to imagine conversations between the
two of them? Why does Nick's father come to Nick and Amy's
18. Amy publicly denounces the local police and criticizes their
investigation. Do you think they did a good job of investigating
her disappearance? Were there real missteps, or was their failing
due to Amy's machinations?
19. Do you believe Amy truly would have committed suicide? Why
does she return?
20. Were you satisfied with the book's ending? What do you think
the future holds for Nick, Amy, and their baby boy?