If you haven’t read Gone Girl yet and are planning to do so, this post contains spoilers. You have been warned.
Thanks to Mel from Stirrup Queens for organizing this book discussion as a part of the GRAB(ook) Club. If you want to see other questions or discussions about Gone Girl, head over to her blog for more links!
I started reading the novel Gone Girl, not sure what to expect, and almost immediately found myself hooked into the story. I read straight through. It’s a tightly written thriller that lived up to the “can’t put it down” hype that surrounded it.
After reading the book, I read part of an interview with author Gillian Flynn. One of the statements she made during the interview totally intrigued me: “To me, marriage is the ultimate mystery.” I thought about that for a while. Flynn’s right that no one really knows what goes on in another person’s relationship. How many times have I seen couples and wondered a little what exactly it is that keeps them together?
Gone Girl presents many facets of Nick and Amy’s relationship, their marriage. There’s the beautiful, perfect face they present to the world. There’s Nick, talking about how much he despises Amy. There’s Amy, angry and desperate to punish Nick. There’s Diary Amy, loving but slowly weaving in more sinister themes. As all of the narrators are pretty unreliable, it’s almost impossible to get the true measure of what binds this pair together.
Somehow, though, they are bound, inextricably and almost inexplicably. Even as Amy gets pleasure from punishing Nick, she won’t let him go. Nick, by the end, talks about how threatened he is, how he knows Amy to be a murderer and yet…he stays. Sure, there’s the excuse of Amy’s pregnancy or that he worries Amy will harm him, but I wasn’t sure I believed those were the only reasons. It felt almost as if there was something else that held him there.
So this is my question: What is it, in your opinion, that holds Nick and Amy’s marriage together at the end? Is Nick telling the truth about his reasons for staying? What about Amy?