Words are like a road map to reporter Camille Preaker’s troubled past. Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, Camille’s first assignment from the second-rate daily paper where she works brings her reluctantly back to her hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls. As Camille works to uncover the truth about these violent crimes, she finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Clues keep leading to dead ends, forcing Camille to unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past to get at the story. Dogged by her own demons, Camille will have to confront what happened to her years before if she wants to survive this homecoming.
I came to this book after reading Gone Girl by the same author a couple of years back, and then watching the recently released film. Where Gone Girl entices you in with charm and sweetness and then reveals the shadows, Sharp Objects introduces you to darkness almost immediately.
Flynn excels at balancing descriptive narration with forward-moving action, which in turn leads readers to keep turning pages. Some have criticized that you can see the ending coming — in some ways, this is true, but as the hints turn into a dread and then become a certainty, the reader has a difficult time looking away.
Some crime thrillers are escapist — you can read them and then go to bed at night with the confidence that those distant crimes are being handled with competence. This one brings it right into your home. Be warned — you may start viewing your own small town with suspicion after experiencing Wind Gap, Missouri.
– Review by Marleah