I could not put this book down. Already a fan of Gillian Flynn, all it took was the first sentence of the summary, “Libby Day was seven when her mother and two sisters were murdered in ‘The Satan Sacrifice’ of Kinnakee, Kansas” for me to pop it in my basket. Much Like “Gone, Girl” this book has so much forward momentum it’s hard to step away. The story veers through time and is told from three perspectives; present day Libby, the surviving sister and 1985 Ben, the accused brother, and 1985 Patty, the murdered mother. The reader is alternately jumping between the days leading up to the murders through Ben and Patty versus Libby’s present day search to put the pieces together. Not until her thirties, when confronted by a group of off-kilter true crime enthusiasts (The Kill Club) does Libby realize that her testimony, at seven, was kind of a joke and may have put an innocent man in prison. Immediate suspects to consider: an absentee, violent and erratic father as well as the “devil worshippers” of Kinnakee in 1985. SO MUCH IS HAPPENING!
Notably, none of the characters are very likable, much like “Gone, Girl”, though all very real, and multi-deminsional personalities. Just not likable. Even Libby, our lone survivor, is adolescent and manipulative. Even if Ben is innocent (is he?) the reader isn’t really rooting for him. WAIT: their Aunt Debbie is a gold star in the rubble. Everyone else though, eh. Side note: Flynn’s first novel “Sharp Objects” reads very differently than the two that followed. I find this curious.