Reviews

Sharp Objects, by Gillian Flynn

yackie_jackie's review against another edition

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4.0

This book is wild. Full disclosure this is my second book I’ve read in my adult life, and it’s coming off the back of Have You Seen Me by Kate White (not good, sorry). Sharp Objects is what I look for and kept me genuinely engaged and hopeful that I will find more books like this. It’s twisted and dark and exciting. Would definitely recommend.

pinkrose550's review against another edition

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1.0

SpoilerWas extremely boring and the twist in the end didn't really make sense.

You are telling me that a 12/13 yearold did all of this? The author hinted at the mom being the killer the entire time; which I suspected was a red herring but the reveal wasn't as shocking/satisfying as I hoped after all this build up.

I would say that the only thing that I enjoyed was the MC. Her being a reporter provided a nice perspective that kept the book intriguing. As the story goes on, the reader ends up being sympathetic towards the MC, especially after it became obvious that shes really not well and is more getting used by those around her.

All in all, this book wasn't really psychological nor a thriller. The mystery aspect was written very poorly as alot of "clues" were very obvious or stated outright which took away from the suspense. Also the sexual scenes added nothing to the story and I feel the book would have been better without.

Would not recommend this book to anyone. Maybe I will try her other books to see if they are any good - but as the first book I am reading from this author I found myself very disappointed.

amandagstevens's review against another edition

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2.0

Camille Preaker is a second-rate journalist sent to her hometown of Wind Gap, Missouri to cover the murders of two little girls and, hopefully, redeem her career. And in typical character-driven murder-mystery style, she'll have to face her past to solve the present.

The setup in itself isn't really a problem. Yes, it's been done many times, but many stories have been written many times. However, the only things redeeming this book from a single-star rating are the overall competency of the narrative structure, the fact the author knew enough not to drag this on for longer than 250 pages, and the skilled sustaining of tension throughout. Tension is the only thing that got me through the book.

The prose is overwritten. The teeming mass of secondary characters are all stock, not one original. The dialogue is melodramatic (I laughed at one point when I was clearly supposed to be freaked out) and seasoned with cliches. Camille's thirteen-year-old half-sister Amma speaks like she's at least forty. I realize she's uncommonly intelligent and somewhat imitative of her mother, including speech patterns, which Camille notes, but I simply didn't buy any thirteen-year-old using words as she does. (Maybe if she'd been exorcised of a legion of demons at some point, I would have bought it? Demons in novels always use English formally and archaically.) An example, p. 223:

Camille: "You feel better, Amma?"
Amma (mockingly but still): "Oh, indeed I do, sister dear. I hope you feel well also."

This isn't the first book I've read (but I really hope it's the last) that, in the name of being "psychologically compelling," tries to pack as many disturbing human behaviors as possible into a few characters. The reader is obviously supposed to chalk everybody's erratic choices up to psychosis or past abuse. I didn't find one of the main characters believable. They're one-dimensional players in a melodrama, not flesh and blood people one could meet in real life.

In addition, the killer's identity is intended to be shocking, but I knew whodunit throughout the entire book. Almost literally as soon as I met this character, I knew. I don't think I've ever solved a mystery as fast I solved this one, though given the overwriting, I don't see how anyone could fail to solve it. Yet even then, the crime details didn't fit with the character's supposed motivation.

To say anymore would be to spoil the entire book, so I'll hide the rest of this review.

SpoilerCamille's cutting is certainly believable as a way she dealt with the emotional pain of losing Marian; so is her promiscuity from a young age as an attempt to be accepted and liked. But the author couldn't stop piling issues onto a character who already had two deep, valid ones. Oh, plus Camille is an alcoholic. Oh, plus Camille is sexually turned on by the combination of pornography and dead animals (when she's twelve!). Oh, plus Camille enjoys the physical sensation of vomiting. Oh, plus adult Camille is so needy she submits to a thirteen-year-old's peer pressure and gets high on Ecstasy after drinking and taking Oxycontin. Oh, plus thirty-year-old Camille has sex with an eighteen-year-old boy she doesn't know, because he's beautiful and has a dead sister, too. How. Many. Ways. Can an author screw up her protagonist? I do not like Camille. I do not want to. I can't see her as a person. She's merely a Pathology Field Day for her author.


Spoiler But there's more. Enter Amma the sociopath, raised by a mother with Munchausen By Proxy. Amma not only knows Adora is making her sick, but also revels in it as a way to exert control ("when you let people do things to you, you're really doing something to them"). That she's a sociopath, fine. But she's an overwritten sociopath, gleeful and maniacal to the point of caricature. ("I hurt!" she screams to Camille. "I love it!") I do buy her jealousy motivation in killing the girls. What I don't buy is that she shaved their legs and painted their toenails. As Richard The Token Cop For The Heroine To Sleep With says, this implies nurturing of the victims, possibly even remorse. It's a red herring to make us think the killer is Adora. And the teeth thing? It's not like human teeth are made of ivory, so ... Shrug to that one.


This novel did not compel me, emotionally or otherwise. It's hardly a human story of cleansing and healing old wounds (though the last paragraph seems to make an attempt in that direction). SHARP OBJECTS is a bath in a voyeuristic mud puddle.

mrkh's review against another edition

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fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75

laurie_griesinger's review against another edition

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2.0

I dunno, I just thought this was way too predictable and shock factor heavy, not even very interesting. It was good for a quick trashy read but I guess I was expecting something more.

mo0nkidd's review against another edition

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5.0

Original read: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

erinecarroll's review against another edition

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4.0

This book was a whole lot of crazy.
Spoiler I did think that it was Adora from the beginning that was the one killing the girls. It turns out that she had Munchausen's by proxy and that she was responsible for the death of Marian but not for the two other young girls that were killed. It was Amma (Camille's half sister and Adora's other daughter) that strangled Ann and Natalie because she was jealous that they were close to Adora. This book was definitely a psychological thriller and in some ways I found it to be more messed up than Amy in Gone Girl. I can not wait to see this protrayed on HBO with Amy Adams. I think I need to read something happy now!!

islesbiyana's review against another edition

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dark mysterious sad tense slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

2.75

“A child weaned on poison considers harm a comfort.”



utterly nauseating. intimately triggering. deeply, deeply troubled.


overall rating — 2.75 stars

trigger/content warnings — self-harm, child abuse (emotional & verbal), rape & sexual assault (referenced with details), ephebophilia, provocative descriptions on the appearances of minors, alcoholism, murder, psychiatric hospitalisation, animal cruelty, occasional fatphobia, graphic desc. of corpses, drug use, mentioned suicide, extremely strained and toxic mother/daughter dynamic



“I just think some women aren't made to be mothers. And some women aren't made to be daughters.”

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withlove_evelyn's review against another edition

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dark mysterious medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.75


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book_case7's review against another edition

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3.0

Wow. What a wild (and batshit crazy) ride. Truly thought I had it all pegged until the very last chapter, the epilogue in fact. I love me a good twist, even if it’s really twisted. But the tidying up of the story made sense.
I simply cannot reconcile, however, the absolutely insane and F***ED UP setting that this book is placed in. Are there really towns/counties like this where all these horrific deeds are considered normal!?! So incredibly disturbing and NOT OKAY.
Excellent thriller, but too goddamn disturbing for my taste.