A crime scene on your anniversary is something a spouse never wants to see, but it’s exactly what Nick Dunne gets at the beginning of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl.
His wife, Amy Elliot Dunne, disappears on the day of their fifth anniversary, only leaving a flipped ottoman and broken table in her wake. A sign of struggle both Officer Boney and Officer Gilpin, the two agents on the scene, find immediately strange. However, Nick says nothing was wrong that morning. He ate crepes with Amy, took his coffee to the beach to clear his head, and then went to the bar he owns with his twin sister Margo. It would seem like he has a pretty tight alibi other than the fact that no one saw him at the beach for the sixty-so minutes he was there. And sixty-so minutes is plenty of time to murder your wife and get rid of the evidence.
All of this, and that’s only the first four chapters. The book goes through a multitude of twists and turns during its three-part saga, switching between the conflicting perspectives of Amy and Nick. Amy’s beautiful yet conflicted past, creating a stark contrast to Nick’s tense and confusing present. The juxtaposed nature of their stories made it impossible to know who to believe, with Flynn creating a series of puzzle boxes. Once you think you’ve opened the final one, you find another box inside, even harder to crack open than the previous. Each is just a hollow cube filled with more lies to sift through.
So which story should you believe? The one of romance turned sour, morphed into fearing for her life? Or the one that depicts a man wrongly convicted, guilty for other things though he may be?
This is The Murder She Wrote but in a more literal sense. It’s a story of love and heartbreak, of murder and innocence that all whittles down to one person being the center of attention. The oh so, Amazing Amy.