Sharp Objects

Sharp Objects - Gillian Flynn When I first started reading this book, I seriously considered not finishing it. It was gritty in a gratuitous, overly disgusting sort of way, and the narrator was unlikable, not relatable, and generally rather annoying. I wasn't drawn in by the plot or the writing style. Still, I forced myself to persevere because I don't like giving up on books when I can avoid it, and because I wanted to know what the outcome was, and because I was hoping it would get better.

I'm really glad I kept reading.

Somewhere around halfway through, this novel picked up speed. I finally understood why the narrator, who was previously just on my nerves, acted the way she did, and I finally began to feel for her as a human being, even while I was disgusted by her actions, decisions, and way of thinking. The gratuitous grittiness began to seem less gratuitous and more necessary for the themes and the plot, and I found myself genuinely enjoying the story. It wasn't the most captivating mystery I've ever read, and to be perfectly honest I didn't care nearly enough about the outcome, but it was an entertaining story nonetheless.

As for the actual whodunit part, I will admit that I was caught by surprise by the twist at the end. Admittedly, I should probably have seen it coming from a few hundred miles away, but for better or worse I did not, so I was impressed by Flynn's ability to divert my attention long enough to pull off a "shocking" finale. I was disappointed in the ending for some other reasons, but in a way the general cynicism mixed with cautious hope feeling that you get from the final pages of the epilogue seems to fit the narrator very well, and the ending makes sense in the larger framework of the book.

Overall, I wouldn't jump up and down and tell you that you absolutely must read this book, but I would recommend checking it out if it sounds like something you might be into and if you don't mind hanging on through a somewhat rocky start.

NOTE: Absolutely positively do not read if you are under the age of 18 or so or if you like to avoid mildly graphic sexual references and graphic references to violence.

NOTE #2: This one is a slight spoiler but I feel it's a necessary warning: If you are at all affected by cutting/the graphic discussion of cutting, or if you feel as though you might be triggered in some way by such references, please please please do not read.