Author: Gillian Flynn
Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
Publication Year: 2013
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, reporter Camille Preaker faces a troubling assignment: She must return to her tiny hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls. For years, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows: a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed in her old bedroom in her family's Victorian mansion, Camille finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Dogged by her own demons, she must unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past if she wants to get the story—and survive this homecoming.
Camille Preaker is a reporter of a less known newspaper in Chicago called Daily Post. When she was assigned to cover a suspected serial killer case in her hometown, she knew she had to take it. This story could be a big break for her and the newspaper. But she faced a dilemma as coming back to her hometown means coming back to her childhood home and meeting her estranged mother. She’s determined to make the visit short and finish the job quickly. Apparently, it’s much more complicated than what she expected.
At a glance, this book might appear as a mystery-crime/thriller book. At the beginning of the book, we have a freaky murder and a kidnapped girl. Since the incidents happened in a small town, the police never handled this kind of case before. So they brought in a homicide detective from Kansas City. Camille offered help to solve the case in exchange of the case information for her story. At this point, it does look like a mystery crime novel. But Sharp Objects is much more than a plot driven crime story. As the story goes, we also unravel what’s really going on with Camille.
Camille is our narrator. We are basically inside her head the whole time reading this book. We see things from her perspective. She’s smart, yet we often see her making unwise decisions. Her judgments are sometimes biased by her relationship with her mother and her half-sister, such as when she agreed to use drugs just to please her sister. She clearly has some issues, one of which is referenced as the title of this book. I just love how Flynn is able to write such layered character.
I must say, Wind Gap is a creepy town. The people who live in this town are odd. It’s a small town, so everyone would want to know everyone’s business. Although they like to badmouth each other, they would be protective if an outsider attacks one of them. It’s so creepy. Though Camille is originally from Wind Gap, we can see at the beginning of the book that the townies don’t trust her. The setting and the townies could make you feel trapped and anxious while reading this book. These helped me getting more immersed into the story.
The ending feels a bit rushed. But I believe the book is mainly focused on Camille’s psychological aspect. So the ending is kind of there just to wrap up the mystery and I’m fine with that. All in all, Sharp Objects is the kind of book that could keep you on the edge of your seat. It’s dark, twisted, and although it’s quite graphic, I recommend this book for adult audiences of course.