This is a short story and it’s an excellent use of first person.
By Gillian Flynn
First Person, Past tense
This is a rare instance. A moment where the characters are despicable (pardon my sounding like Daffy Duck) and the opening profession is not something I would care about. Usually, a book like this I would toss aside. But this twisted short story is quite a treat.
It was really hard finding a passage that wouldn’t give much away and that showcased the great use of first person.
From pg. 36
Mostly I came during the day, when the kids were at school and Susan was at work. I did cleanse the house in that I washed it. I lit my sage and sprinkled my sea salt. I boiled my lavender and rosemary, and I wiped down that house, walls and floors, and then I sat in the library and read. Also, I nosed around. I could find a zillion photos of grinning-sunshine jack, a few old ones of pouty Miles, a couple of somber Susan and none of her husband. I felt sorry for Suan. An angry stepson and a husband who was always away, no wonder she let her mind go to dark places.
And yet. And yet, I felt it too: the house. Not necessarily malevolent, but…mindful. I could feel it studying me, does that make sense? It crowded me.
So here’s the thing. When you first open the book you are met with a character who talks about how great she is giving hand jobs. Those just aren’t my kind of books. I don’t care about romance and sex, I want mystery, suspense, thriller, creepy, demented.
But this book, people. This book! It stayed with me. The last three paragraphs were perfect. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book that closed so perfectly. I didn’t know how I’d like the book to end, but that was great.
Another tick on the against side for this book, I didn’t like Gone Girl. I’m quite possibly the only person who didn’t like it, but yeah…I didn’t like it. So it takes me a little bit to remind myself that sometimes an author can blow you away even if you think you don’t like them.
LESSON: Don’t judge an author by one book! Ms. Flynn is pretty darn good (yes, I’m late to the party)!
At the end of the year I’m going to recap my favorite books for different points of view and there’s a really high chance this will be number one.