Book Review: Dark Places ByGillian Flynn

“I was not a lovable child, and I'd grown into a deeply unlovable adult. Draw a picture of my soul, and it'd be a scribble with fangs.” 

-Gillian Flynn, Dark Places

Plot (without giving anything away): 

Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in “The Satan Sacrifice" of Kinnakee, Kansas.” She survived—and famously testified that her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, the Kill Club—a secret secret society obsessed with notorious crimes—locates Libby and pumps her for details. They hope to discover proof that may free Ben. Libby hopes to turn a profit off her tragic history: She’ll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club—for a fee. As Libby’s search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started—on the run from a killer.

What I thought: 

Wow! This book was a beautiful, interesting, and an intense piece of work. Definitely a page turner. I am not one for dark books but one of the members from my book club decided on it and it blew me away. The pace of the book is very realistic. Apparently Flynn did much research before writing the book and it shows in an often detailed and heart wrenching way. Sometimes the story felt so real that you forgot about reality and you were submerged in the characters lives. Libby Day, the main character is a phenomenal character, she is broken, imperfect and dark but funny and hopeful at the same time. Flynn has a talent for dragging you on in this story. 

The story bounces back and forth between Libby's present-day, first-person narrative (as she attempts to piece together what really happened the night of her family's murders) and alternately Patty and Ben in the mere hours and minutes leading up to the murders.  I loved the fact that you never really know what is going to happen. One second you are convinced you know who the murder is but the next you are in doubt. This book is AMAZING...very dark but one of my favorites I have read in a long time. 

Highly recommend. I can't wait to read Sharp Objects. 

Next up on the list: 

My Story by Elizabeth Smart 

San Francisco for the weekend

Tom and I promised each other to always go on adventures. 

Since being married we have made a list of places we want to visit and sites we want to see. 

One of the trips we wanted to do was to visit Toms sister Sarah and her fiancĂ© who live an hour out of San Francisco. One day we found some awesome deals on flights and headed out for the weekend. I convinced everyone to go to Alcatraz (yes I am a nerd) which turned out to be amazing. Everyone LOVED it. I would recommend it. We ate at a delicious place called The Plant | Cafe Organic right on the water that served all organic local food. We finished the night off at the famous Bi-Rite Creamery. We finished our trip with a visit to a winery by Sarah and Robs home. We got a private tour of the vineyard and got to taste a lot of amazing wines. 

Love random weekend trips with my main squeeze! 

Book Review: The Cuckoo's Calling by J.K. Rowling

“How easy it was to capitalize on a person’s own bent for self-destruction; how simple to nudge them into non-being, then to stand back and shrug and agree that it had been the inevitable result of a chaotic, catastrophic life.”
―  Robert Galbraith, The Cuckoo's Calling
The Cuckoo’s calling is a crime fiction novel by J.K. Rowling, published under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith (that sneaky lady.)
Summary (without giving anything away):
After losing his leg to a land mine in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike is barely scraping by as a private investigator. Strike is down to one client, and creditors are calling. He has also just broken up with his longtime girlfriend and is living in his office. Then John Bristow walks through his door with an amazing story: His sister, the legendary supermodel Lula Landry, known to her friends as the Cuckoo, famously fell to her death a few months earlier. The police ruled it a suicide, but John refuses to believe that. The case plunges Strike into the world of multimillionaire beauties, rock-star boyfriends, and desperate designers, and it introduces him to every variety of pleasure, enticement, seduction, and delusion known to man.
What I thought:
This was my first crime fiction novel EVER. They aren’t usually my thing but since it was J.K. Rowling I wanted to try it. J.K. Rowling filled by childhood with magic. I was skeptical going into it because I couldn’t finish her adult novel Casual Vacancy. The writing and the story was hard to follow and didn’t draw me in. Overall I "liked" Cuckoo’s Calling, I didn’t love it but I enjoyed it. It was interesting, there were twists and the characters were complex. However I had a hard time once I hit the middle of the book. I felt like it was going nowhere. It was to the point where you can barley finish a chapter without your mind wondering. I pushed through and luckily it picked back up again. By the end I was drawn back in and ended up finishing the book.
I have noticed with J.K.’s adult novels they are tediously descriptive and a bit old fashioned. I read both of her adult novels with the hope that I would be drawn in just like the Potter series. For me, that was not the case. Luckily I pushed through Cuckoo’s calling and was able to finish it.
Just FYI the ending was thrilling!
Next up on the list for book club:
Dark Places