Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
Books tend to come in bunches around here, and to paraphrase the characters on the cable show American Pickers; The time to read a book is when you see it. A buddy clearly has a thing for the writings of Gillian Flynn, so I get to read them when he is done. Which is OK, I know I need to read more fiction. And my, what good fiction!
In Dark Places Gillian takes her normal mix of strong but flawed female characters up a notch. Our protagonist, Libby, at seven years old escaped from her home while the rest of her family was being murdered, apparently by her brother. We find her as an adult pulled into finding out what happened by a group of Who-Done-it types, all as a way to make some desperately needed money. The group is trying to get her brother freed from prison. The story takes us back and forth through time and in and out of the perspectives of many characters smoothly.
The plot has the typical twists and turns, and if you have read anything else by Gillian, you’ll proabably see the big plot twist coming. And then again, you probably won’t see the twist to the twist. [That’s as much of a spoiler you’ll get from me.] I did, but I still didn’t care. This is her strongest writing yet. Strong, accessible characters, a plot line that speeds right along, and twists that didn’t leave me throwing the book across the room. [Books bounce off my walls when I am asked to suspend disbelief too much.]
Since it is still the middle of winter, I can’t say this is a “beach read” but it was a nice way to spend a Saturday. And I really like the way Gillian shows the criminal justice system to be….less than accurate, even after twenty five years to get it right.