There are few pleasures in life quite as sweet as a good book. Throw in a little murder and it can make it all the more delicious and ensnaring. Throw in a fucked up twist and you have yourself a winner.
The steps to finding a good book are very basic, and if you have a kindle it makes it easier. Simply look at recommended books based on what you already like, read the description, try a sample, and prosper. This isn’t groundbreaking advice but if you’re looking for a decent read the below books, all turned into films, are worth taking a read.
A Simple Favour
Due later this year “A Simple Favour” is the most recent fucked up mystery book turned film. Starring Blake Lively and Anna Kendrick the film is almost guaranteed to make back its budget, as the actress’ draw alone will get asses in seats. If you haven’t already, be sure to watch the teaser trailer.
The story follows the disappearance of Emily, the perfect working mother, and the circumstances around it. Like the headless chicken she is, who’s narrating made me want to reach into the book and shake her, Emily’s best friend Stephanie spends the plot trying to figure out exactly what happened. If there wasn’t a twist it wouldn’t have made the list, so we’ll go no further.
Unlike the other books on here this one isn’t as long, and I found some of the plot lines easy to spot before they came. That said in terms of twists per pages it has the best ratio of any featured.
It’s likely you’ve already heard of this one, and you’ve probably already seen the film. “Gone Girl” is the beautiful book that comes along once in a lifetime that means you can scare all of the men in your life into stepping back into line with a simple threat – “don’t make me Gone Girl you!”- and boy is it a beaut.
On the off chance you’ve been living under a rock, it details the events around the disappearance of Amy Dunne. The real brilliance of it though comes from how her husband, Nick Dunne, behaves throughout the investigation – and with a heavy reliance on an unreliable narrator you never really know whether or not he’s had anything to do with it, until you definitely do. This is Gillian Flynn’s true masterpiece.
Even if you’ve already seen the film the book opens doors not explored, and explains tiny details you may have missed in the film. It also adds a bunch to the story that was cut for time, so all of the bones of the story are there still but with the book you get the juicy juicy mystery meat.
In a sentiment that reveals more about me then care for, I can honestly say this is my favourite book. Sometimes a truly fucked up character comes along and they just speak to your soul.
The Girl On The Train
The key to a good murder mystery is an unreliable narrator and like those before her, the book’s main character Rachel is unreliable as fuck. Unlike the rest of however, Rachel doesn’t even trust herself.
She, like any commuter worth their salt, ‘light stalks’ a couple whose house she passes every day while riding the train. She sees something, she tells the police, and the wife ends up missing. Drama and death ensue.
From a narrative point of view Rachel trying to figure out what the hell has happened, and worrying there is darkness lurking beneath her own surface, is a gripping read. If you’ve seen the film you already know who the killer is, and the great injustice of it is that they make it clear who it is by the middle of the film. Dreamworks shot themselves in the foot with their script choices, but where the film lacks the book takes its sweet time just to mess with your head – which is really what we’re all here for.
On the off chance you haven’t seen the film, and you should because Emily Blunt is a delight, then make sure to read book first. Your disturbed tendencies will thank me.