Publisher Website - Penguin Random House
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages - 64 pages
My Rating - 4/5
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.The Grownup is Gillian Flynn's version of a ghost story. Fans of her work will immediately know that means a dark atmosphere, plenty of surprises and story where nothing is as at first seems. The truth is more unsettling than fiction, and it's a story that will leave you with chills.
Gillian Flynn is the queen of dark characters. She crafts these flawed, damaged characters effortlessly. She allows them to walk a thin moral line, and they are all the more captivating for it. There is something about all her characters that make them memorable. From Amy Dunne, to our unnamed narrator, she writes female characters that are unlike anything I've read before. Her characterization is pitch perfect, even in short story format.
This is a story unlike any ghost story you've read before. The truth behind what is haunting the Burke's is filled with more than a few surprises. It's a psychological thriller within 64 pages, and it's a story that shows exactly why Gillian is the master of her genre. Unsettling, explosive, and entirely compelling.
My only complaint at the end was that I wanted a full book about this story. The potential is there for a full length novel about these characters. You will feel unsatisfied, but only because you're not ready to leave this world or these characters. The ending, in typical Gillian Flynn fashion, is both ambiguous and unsettling and that just makes you crave another book from Gillian Flynn all the more. Those looking for a quick, but well written, read will want to devour this one... ghosts and all.