Gillian Flynn | Author Exploration

I have been wanting to do some Author Explorations for awhile and have been craving some Gillian Flynn so I thought she was a good place to start! One of my favorite things is to fall in love with an authors writing and then read everything they have ever written. This is something that has been a slow progress because I love so many authors and many have lots of books. It is something I definitely want to work on in the future.

Who Is Gillian Flynn?

I am not going to pretend I know Flynn in any sort of way so this is the bio I pulled off of Goodreads!

Gillian Flynn is an American author and television critic for Entertainment Weekly. She has so far written three novels, Sharp Objects, for which she won the 2007 Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for the best thriller; Dark Places; and her best-selling third novel Gone Girl.

Her book has received wide praise, including from authors such as Stephen King. The dark plot revolves around a serial killer in a Missouri town, and the reporter who has returned from Chicago to cover the event. Themes include dysfunctional families,violence and self-harm.

In 2007 the novel was shortlisted for the Mystery Writers of America Edgar for Best First Novel by an American Writer, Crime Writers’ Association Duncan Lawrie, CWA New Blood and Ian Fleming Steel Daggers, winning in the last two categories.

Flynn, who lives in Chicago, grew up in Kansas City, Missouri. She graduated at the University of Kansas, and qualified for a Master’s degree from Northwestern University.

The Books

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, reporter Camille Preaker faces a troubling assignment: she must return to her tiny hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls. For years, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows, a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed in her old bedroom in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Dogged by her own demons, she must unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past if she wants to get the story—and survive this homecoming.

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in “The Satan
Sacrifice” of Kinnakee, Kansas. She survived—and famously testified that her fifteen-year-old brother, Ben, was the killer. Twenty-five years later, the Kill Club—a secret secret society obsessed with notorious crimes—locates Libby and pumps her for details. They hope to discover proof that may free Ben. Libby hopes to turn a profit off her tragic history: She’ll reconnect with the players from that night and report her findings to the club—for a fee. As Libby’s search takes her from shabby Missouri strip clubs to abandoned Oklahoma tourist towns, the unimaginable truth emerges, and Libby finds herself right back where she started—on the run from a killer.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer?

The Grownup by Gillian Flynn 

A canny young woman is struggling to survive by perpetrating various levels of mostly harmless fraud. On a rainy April morning, she is reading auras at Spiritual Palms when Susan Burke walks in. A keen observer of human behavior, our unnamed narrator immediately diagnoses beautiful, rich Susan as an unhappy woman eager to give her lovely life a drama injection. However, when the “psychic” visits the eerie Victorian home that has been the source of Susan’s terror and grief, she realizes she may not have to pretend to believe in ghosts anymore. Miles, Susan’s teenage stepson, doesn’t help matters with his disturbing manner and grisly imagination. The three are soon locked in a chilling battle to discover where the evil truly lurks and what, if anything, can be done to escape it.

How They Should Be Read

The answer is there is no real order in which they must be read because they are all stand alone books, but I do have some suggestions. These books could be read in publication order. A lot of people always choose to read authors books in the order in which they were published. In my opinion this would be a good choice because Flynn’s first book was my favorite! I feel like the order I actually read them in was by popularity. I picked up Gone Girl right before the movie came out and got totally sucked into Flynn’s writing. I think if you are not a huge fan of mysteries and thrillers or unsure about Flynn you should pick up her short story The Grownup first just to get a feel for her writing. I do not think it is one of her best works in my opinion but gives you a feel of her writing.

Publication Order                       Order I Read Them                      If Unsure About Flynn

Sharp Objects                                 Gone Girl                                       The Grownup
Dark Places                                  Sharp Objects                                    Gone Girl 
Gone Girl                                      The Grownup                                  Sharp Objects
The Grownup                                 Dark Places                                     Dark Places 

My Thoughts

I do not read a lot of mystery or thriller books, but once I read Gone Girl I had to get my hands on the rest of her work. Flynn has a way of writing that keeps you completely in the dark and guessing the whole time, thinking you know what is going to happen until she completely throws a plot twist. Throughout each of the books I was on the edge of my seat. These books are definitely on the darker side too. They are dark and twisted, to the point where they make you question Flynn’s background. She is a mastermind with her writing and really puts a lot of effort into crafting her stories so that you only get small pieces of information at a time.

My favorite book was Sharp Objects and my least favorite was Dark Places but they are all really great books. They are such quick reads that completely suck you into them. There are even movies out for Gone Girl and Dark Places and I have heard mention of a movie for Sharp Objects!

For more information check out my reviews!
Gone Girl
Gone Girl | Movie Edition
Sharp Objects
The Grownup

Similar Reads 

If you are like me and fly through Flynn’s books and then need more like them, I have found a few that fill small parts of what I am missing in my life from the absence of more Gillian Flynn books.

The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins

You by Caroline Kepnes

Velocity by Dean Koontz

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TV Watch List


I have been watching a lot of TV lately and I thought it would be fun to do some TV series/ season reviews and thought discussions. I thought I would start with just listing all the TV shows I have completed and then when I get to the reviews and discussions I will link back to this post!

♦ 13 Reasons Why

♦ Orange Is The New Black

♦ The 100

♦ Younger

♦ Buffy The Vampire Slayer

♦ Pretty Little Liars

♦ The OC

♦ Grey’s Anatomy

♦ Riverdale

♦ Game of Thrones

♦ Big Little Lies

♦ #Girlboss

♦ The Handmaid’s Tale

♦ Harlots

♦ Famous In Love

♦ Broad City

♦ Gossip Girl

♦ The Client List

♦ Scandal

♦ The Fosters

♦ Finding Carter

♦ The Bold Type

Mindhunter

♦ Slasher

♦ Lore

The Walrus and the Book Reader | Mini Reviews #1

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I have been really busy this past year and I haven’t had much time for writing reviews. I figured I would do a series or mini reviews. Some of the books I read I am going to do full out reviews, but most of them I did not have much to say or could not remember enough.

23093359The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 1: The Faust  Act by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie (Illustrations), Matt Wilson (Colorist), Clayton Cowles

Genre: Graphic Novel

Synopsis:Every ninety years, twelve gods incarnate as humans. They are loved. They are hated. In two years, they are dead. The team behind critical tongue-attractors like Young Avengers and PHONOGRAM reunite to create a world where gods are the ultimate pop stars and pop stars are the ultimate gods. But remember: just because you’re immortal, doesn’t mean you’re going to live forever.

Goodreads| Amazon

review

This was the first graphic novel I have ever read. It was bought for me by a friend who is really into graphic novels and thought this might peak my interest. I have to say I did enjoy it, but it was a little hard for me to get into and follow the storyline. The illustrations were absolutely beautiful and I really enjoyed the graphics. So overall it was okay, but I am not totally sold on the graphic novels.

4oysters


18478083 Kissing in America by Margo Rabb

Genre: YA Contemporary

Synopsis:                                                                                            In the two years since her father died, sixteen-year-old Eva has found comfort in reading romance novels—118 of them, to be exact—to dull the pain of her loss that’s still so present. Her romantic fantasies become a reality when she meets Will, who seems to truly understand Eva’s grief. Unfortunately, after Eva falls head-over-heels for him, he picks up and moves to California without any warning. Not wanting to lose the only person who has been able to pull her out of sadness—and, perhaps, her shot at real love—Eva and her best friend, Annie, concoct a plan to travel to the west coast to see Will again. As they road trip across America, Eva and Annie confront the complex truth about love.

In this honest and emotional journey that National Book Award finalist Sara Zarr calls “gorgeous, funny, and joyous,” readers will experience the highs of infatuation and the lows of heartache as Eva contends with love in all of its forms.

Goodreads| Amazon

review

I did not know much about this book when I got it. It was on sale for 1.99 and I figured why not. This is one of those books that did not leave much of an impact on me because I do not remember much about it. I know it was a quick and cute read. The road trip and friendship elements were a great component of the story and made the book enjoyable. What I did have an issue with was the romance, or the fact that everything Eva was doing was based on following a boy across the country. I like the realizations that both girls came to and how they developed throughout the story. Overall this was a cute book that works well if you want a fast and fluffy read.

3oysters

*ratings are done on the oyster scale*

So Behind! Review-A-Thon | Wrap-Up

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The So Behind! Review-A-Thon is hosted by Krystal at Books Are My Thing. The point of the So Behind! Review-A-Thon is to spend the weekend catching up and lessening the stress of being behind on your reviews. Anyone who writes reviews, whether on their blog, Goodreads, Amazon, etc. can participate! The review-a-thon will run from October 10-12. The only requirements of participating are that you write a quick goals post and a wrap-up post. Your review goals can be whatever you need to work on, whether it be to write X amount of reviews, finishing your draft reviews, catching up on your ARC reviews, anything! Link up with your goals post here! To keep us all motivated and writing, use #SoBehindReviews on Twitter to discuss how things are going!


 

I have really been falling behind on my reviews and even though I felt like I accomplished quite a lot this weekend I still have so many reviews to catch up on. I have just been putting reading before reviews.

MY GOALS:

Finish all in draft reviews I still have about six draft reviews that I need to complete. 
At least complete 8 out of the 12 reviews I was able to complete 6 reviews and get them posted. Most of them were ones from the beginning of the year so it felt good to be able to get those done. 
♠ Reformat some of my old reviews I was actually to get a good majority of this done. I still have quite a few to go through and complete, but I am feeling good about my progress! 

 

So it was a lot more successful than I thought, but I still have a lot to catch up on and need to get it done soon because it is stressing me out.

 

 

 

So Behind! Review-A-Thon | Goals

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The So Behind! Review-A-Thon is hosted by Krystal at Books Are My Thing. The point of the So Behind! Review-A-Thon is to spend the weekend catching up and lessening the stress of being behind on your reviews. Anyone who writes reviews, whether on their blog, Goodreads, Amazon, etc. can participate! The review-a-thon will run from October 10-12. The only requirements of participating are that you write a quick goals post and a wrap-up post. Your review goals can be whatever you need to work on, whether it be to write X amount of reviews, finishing your draft reviews, catching up on your ARC reviews, anything! Link up with your goals post here! To keep us all motivated and writing, use #SoBehindReviews on Twitter to discuss how things are going!


 

I have really been falling behind on my reviews. I have been putting them aside to have more time for reading. But part of my whole point of starting this blog was to be able to share my thoughts on books that I am reading, to be able to fangirl, share thoughts and discuss books! I have a total of about 12 book reviews that I have to do from books I have read this year.

MY GOALS:

Finish all in draft reviews from books I have read the past month.
At least complete 8 out of the 12 reviews I need to get to from books I have read this year.
♠ I would love to be able to go back and reformat some of my old reviews (This might be reaching)

 

If you are feeling stressed or falling behind on writing reviews you should join in and clear some time up for discovering/ reading new books! 

 

Making Up For Monday {8/18}

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Hosted by: An Avid Reader; A Wannabe Writer

Today’s Question: How do you feel about giving negative reviews? 

This is a tough and complex topic to talk about. As much as I hate giving a book a negative review because I know how much work the author has but into it, it is something that is necessary. By necessary I mean that it is important to be honest when writing reviews. Authors much like other people in entertainment have to know that not everyone will enjoy and/or find their work as exemplary. Criticism is tough, but proves a purpose. It helps to make products better in the future or know how to better promote or market their product.

It is always really tough for me when I receive a book for review from an author or publisher to write a negative review. I try to be as honest as possible and showcase the positives of a book. I think it is important to express the reasons for why you did not enjoy or like the book, but I don’t think it needs to be with malice or rudely done. There is a nice way to share honest critics and problems. I am also aware that there are books that I can dislike, but others really enjoy. For that reason I really try to make points of enjoyment (positives) and express what it was that I thought had potential and liked so that others who were interested would know all of my opinions on the book.

Also it is hard sometimes to give negative reviews to a book that has a lot of hype and is greatly enjoyed/loved by the greater public because I always question my thoughts and feelings about the book, but ultimately I have to not allow others to contribute to my overall thoughts on a book.

What are you thoughts and opinions about giving negative reviews and the overall review process of books? I would love to have a discussion and hear others comments on the topic.

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This was a very good month for me in terms of receiving books for review and winning giveaways and such. I will include after each book where I purchased/ received it from! There are a few I am still waiting on, but I will include them in my July book haul! I also feel like I spent a lot less money on books this month which is really good for me especially compared to the past few months.

 


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Meant To Be by Lauren Morrill – I have been trying to get into more contemporary and this was really cheap on Bookoutlet and I it brought me to the total so I could use the coupon!

Hexed by Michelle Krys – I have already read this and if you view my blog at all you would know that I enjoyed it and have been promoting it like crazy! I even did an interview with the author! I had to have to hardcopy of this because the naked book is absolutely beautiful!

Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard – This is the first book in a paranormal series I have been eyeing and when I was creating my Bookoutlet order I saw it for pretty cheap and figured why not.

Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson – This is a retelling of Peter Pan. I have heard absolutely amazing things about this book and can’t wait to read it.

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King of Thorns by Mark Lawrence – This is the second book in The Broken Empire series. I am trying to get all the books so I can binge read the whole thing!

The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen – I do not know much about this book, but heard someone on booktube rave about it and I have been looking for more fantasy books and found it cheap on Amazon so I had to get it.

Carrier of the Mark by Leigh Fallon – I bought this because I had won the second one in a giveaway and it was on Bookoutlet for cheap.

Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne – I bought this because I was planning on going to the Fierce Reads book signing, but wasn’t able to make it. I don’t know much about this but it is intriguing.

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas – I am so EXCITED about reading this book. I have had it on my TBR for so long and can’t believe I just only bought it.

Onyx by Jennifer L. Armentrout – This is the second book in the Lux series. Everyone says amazing things about this series and I have been interesting in reading more about aliens as well as more of Jennifer L. Armentrout’s work.

Adaptation by Malinda Lo –This was recommended to me and has been on my last few TBR lists. I initially received this from netgalley but it expired before I could get to it so I just bought it!

Half A King by Joe Abercrombie – I have already read this and absolutely loved it! I received this signed copy from the publisher for having a my question picked by the author!

IMG_1933 ♠ The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd –I love that this is inspired by the classic the Island of Doctor Moreau. I also really want to get into gothic thrillers.

The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson – This is the second in a fantasy trilogy. I have heard lots of good thing about this and hope to binge read it sometime soon.

Incarnate by Jodi Meadows –This is the first book in a trilogy about reincarnation and sounds very intriguing.

Asylum by Madeleine Roux –This looks good and creepy. I love horror movies, but haven’t read much in the horror genre and really want to.

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KINDLE E-BOOKS

The Fear Trials by Lindsay Cummings – This is the prequel to The Murder Complex. I have already read and reviewed this.

♠ I Am The Mission by Allen Zadoff –This is the sequel to I Am The Weapon which is about an assassin and I received it from netgalley in return for a honest review.

The Vault of Dreamers by Caragh M. O’Brien – This comes out in September 2014  and is science fiction about dreams.I received it from netgalley in return for a honest review.

Schasm (LibraryThing) –I received this from Early reviewers from Library Thing for a honest review. This is about dreams, being caught between two worlds and sounds really interesting. 

The End of You and Me by Wendi M. Lee –I was asked by the author if I would review this book. I have already read and reviewed it.

The After by Briane Pagel –I was also approached by the author to see if I would review this book. It is not something normal to what I usually read, but sounds unique.

Mechanical by Pauline C. Harris – This is a book written by a fellow member in the book blogging community. Harris is a book tuber and I can’t wait to read this and be able to support other book bloggers.

Still so many books and more to come, but soon enough I won’t be able to get any so I am going to enjoy it for now 🙂

What books did you get this month? Have you read any of these? Which one should I read first?

Sorry for the long and repetitiveness of this post.

Catching Up On Reviews….Finally

I am taking procrastination to the max with school since I have 11 days until Graduation and one week left of classes. I am so ready to be done and don’t want to deal with anything related to homework and class. I am not really feeling up to watching hockey with my dad and brothers so I was isolated to my room. I figured this would be the perfect time to try and play catch up on reviews that I have been putting off forever. I am going to try my best, but they will probably be very brief and more like my thoughts and opinions. But at least I am trying (that is what counts right?) So keep a look out for my updates and feel free to share your thoughts and such on them. There are some that I have decided besides my rating I am just not going to review (mostly novellas/classics). If there are any that I have decided not to review but you would like to know my thoughts on the book etc. let me know. I would love to hear other opinions (etc) !  Happy Easter to those who celebrate and Happy Lazy Sunday to all of the rest !

[ Still working on:

  • Song of the Lioness quartet (I will do a series review of this once I finish the fourth book rather than one for each)
  • Aquifer- Jonathan Friesen
  • On Fire- Nancy Holder
  • *Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien (still not sure if I want to review this)
  • Proxy- Alex London
  • Wintergirls- Laurie Halse Anderson ]

We LOVE It Wednesday

I am going to preface this by saying that in my choices for We LOVE It Wednesday are for the purpose of trying to introduce and promote books that I feel do not receive enough hype or recognition!

Betwixt

 

 TARA BRAY SMITH, BETWIXT

BETWIXT: A place, a not-here, not-there world somewhere in between.

This is not one of my all time favorite books and I gave it a semi lower score, but I still believe it is a great read and one worth reading. I think it gets a bad rap and not many people give it a chance. It has a semi slow start but is interesting and makes you think. This follows the life of three different characters whose lives intertwine.  There are supernatural aspects that appear in the story. I am trying to be careful to not give away the story, so I won’t be giving away too much. The characters are so relatable and go through a big change in their lives.

I did feel like questions were left unanswered and that was my main reason for not being totally in love with the story. And although there were questions left unanswered it give a way in which you can make you own opinions and in a way that is kind of cool. I do believe it is a must read and a really interesting concept and unique story.

For other resources and links:

My Blog Review

Goodreads 

Betwixtnovel (Another persons review)

Bookoutlet (If you think it is worth a read it is only 79 cents at book outlet!)

I challenge you to give it a read and let me know what you think.