The Complete Gillian Flynn Read online





  This author is available for select readings and lectures. To inquire about a possible appearance, please contact the Random House Speakers Bureau at [email protected] or (212) 572-2013.

  http://www.rhspeakers.com/

  This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

  Sharp Objects copyright © 2006 by Gillian Flynn

  Dark Places copyright © 2009 by Gillian Flynn

  Gone Girl copyright © 2012 by Gillian Flynn

  All rights reserved.

  Published in the United States by Broadway Books, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company, New York.

  www.crownpublishing.com

  BROADWAY BOOKS and its logo, B D W Y, are trademarks of Random House LLC.

  Sharp Objects and Dark Places were originally published separately in hardcover in the United States by Shaye Areheart Books, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC, New York, in 2006 and 2009, respectively. Gone Girl was originally published in hardcover by Crown Publishers, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC, New York, in 2012.

  eBook ISBN 978-0-553-41989-4

  v3.1

  Contents

  Cover

  Title Page

  Copyright

  Gone Girl

  Dark Places

  Sharp Objects

  About the Author

  To Brett: light of my life, senior

  and

  Flynn: light of my life, junior

  Love is the world’s infinite mutability; lies, hatred, murder even, are all knit up in it; it is the inevitable blossoming of its opposites, a magnificent rose smelling faintly of blood.

  —Tony Kushner, THE ILLUSION

  Contents

  Master - Table of Contents

  Cover

  Title Page

  Dedication

  Epigraph

  Part One: Boy Loses Girl

  Nick Dunne: The Day of

  Amy Elliott: January 8, 2005

  Nick Dunne: The Day of

  Amy Elliott: September 18, 2005

  Nick Dunne: The Day of

  Amy Elliott Dunne: July 5, 2008

  Nick Dunne: The Night of

  Amy Elliott Dunne: April 21, 2009

  Nick Dunne: One Day Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: July 5, 2010

  Nick Dunne: One Day Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: August 23, 2010

  Nick Dunne: Two Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: September 15, 2010

  Nick Dunne: Three Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: October 16, 2010

  Nick Dunne: Four Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: April 28, 2011

  Nick Dunne: Four Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: July 21, 2011

  Nick Dunne: Five Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: August 17, 2011

  Nick Dunne: Five Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: October 21, 2011

  Nick Dunne: Six Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: February 15, 2012

  Nick Dunne: Six Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: June 26, 2012

  Nick Dunne: Seven Days Gone

  Part Two: Boy Meets Girl

  Amy Elliott Dunne: The Day of

  Nick Dunne: Seven Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: The Day of

  Nick Dunne: Seven Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Five Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Eight Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Seven Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Eight Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Eight Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Eight Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Nine Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Nine Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Nine Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Ten Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Ten Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Ten Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Ten Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Ten Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Eleven Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Fourteen Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Twenty-six Days Gone

  Nick Dunne: Thirty-three Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Forty Days Gone

  Part Three: Boy Gets Girl Back (Or Vice Versa)

  Nick Dunne: Forty Days Gone

  Amy Elliott Dunne: The Night of the Return

  Nick Dunne: The Night of the Return

  Amy Elliott Dunne: The Night of the Return

  Nick Dunne: The Night of the Return

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Five Days After the Return

  Nick Dunne: Thirty Days After the Return

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Eight Weeks After the Return

  Nick Dunne: Nine Weeks After the Return

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Ten Weeks After the Return

  Nick Dunne: Twenty Weeks After the Return

  Amy Elliott Dunne: Ten Months, Two Weeks, Six Days After the Return

  Acknowledgments

  part one

  BOY LOSES GIRL

  NICK DUNNE

  THE DAY OF

  When I think of my wife, I always think of her head. The shape of it, to begin with. The very first time I saw her, it was the back of the head I saw, and there was something lovely about it, the angles of it. Like a shiny, hard corn kernel or a riverbed fossil. She had what the Victorians would call a finely shaped head. You could imagine the skull quite easily.

  I’d know her head anywhere.

  And what’s inside it. I think of that too: her mind. Her brain, all those coils, and her thoughts shuttling through those coils like fast, frantic centipedes. Like a child, I picture opening her skull, unspooling her brain and sifting through it, trying to catch and pin down her thoughts. What are you thinking, Amy? The question I’ve asked most often during our marriage, if not out loud, if not to the person who could answer. I suppose these questions stormcloud over every marriage: What are you thinking? How are you feeling? Who are you? What have we done to each other? What will we do?

  My eyes flipped open at exactly six A.M. This was no avian fluttering of the lashes, no gentle blink toward consciousness. The awakening was mechanical. A spooky ventriloquist-dummy click of the lids: The world is black and then, showtime! 6-0-0 the clock said—in my face, first thing I saw. 6-0-0. It felt different. I rarely woke at such a rounded time. I was a man of jagged risings: 8:43, 11:51, 9:26. My life was alarmless.

  At that exact moment, 6-0-0, the sun climbed over the skyline of oaks, revealing its full summer angry-god self. Its reflection flared across the river toward our house, a long, blaring finger aimed at me through our frail bedroom curtains. Accusing: You have been seen. You will be seen.

  I wallowed in bed, which was our New York bed in our new house, which we still called the new house, even though we’d been back here for two years. It’s a rented house right along the Mississippi River, a house that screams Suburban Nouveau Riche, the kind of place I aspired to as a kid from my split-level, shag-carpet side of town. The kind of house that is immediately familiar: a generically grand, unchallenging, new, new, new house that my wife would—and did—detest.

  “Should I remove my soul before I come inside?” Her first line upon arrival. It had been a compromise: Amy demanded we rent, not buy, in my little Missouri hometown, in her firm hope that we wouldn’t be stuck here long. But the only houses for rent were clustered in this failed development: a miniature ghost town of bank-owned, rec