The Tug of War Between Page and Screen

I just wanted to get this review off to you before the release of the TV adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s “Sharp Objects.”  A mystery abounds as to which cable network will broker the broadcast.. Rumor further has it that “Sharp Objects” may broadcast as a series piece, so if you’re pricked by the spell cast in this work, watch it and comment back to me!


There is nature, nurture and then something totally else…  Gillian Flynn toys with this notion in “Sharp Objects” the story of  30ish Camille Preaker, Journalist, cutter, and en route home to discover a very important story.

Set in Windgap, a small town outside Chicago, Camille returns home to chase down the story of a serial killer who’s murdering Windgap’s feisty little girls.  Camille reenters circles long closed to her  in order that she gain access to details coveted by privy those who are exclusive.

Sharp Objects” is filled with flawed femmes fatales–cocktail pouring heiresses, spoiled, near-schizophrenic half-sisters, a self-mutilating repressor of truth and furies toying with fates of innocent others.  Mothers, daughters, sisters and friends so pathological that the reader can’t help pity them even when disgusted.  Male characters are secondary in this one.  They pretty much serve to fulfill cheap thrills, fatherly facades, and crusty male authority figures.

Flynn does an excellent job at crafting a psychological thriller.  Suspicion is raised and the point of view enabled to readers is elevated to startling heights leaving one thinking and breathless.  Further, Flynn juxtaposes scenes and chapters tastefully detailing the lifestyles and behaviors of benefactor and underclass communities as readers journey from Victorian estates to pig slaughter farms.  Flynn knits this together with sex, drugs and violence leaving the reader with a reading hangover.  A skilled mystery writer, Flynn distracts the reader with repeated foreshadowed imagery and red herrings that bleed out completely. 

Similar to other tales crafted by Flynn, “Sharp Objects” touches upon families whose cup runneth over with dysfunction.  It’s worth the read because it gives equal opportunity for evil women to occupy center stage which is a mission and accomplishment for Flynn. Read it before Tv muddies your imagination with a television interpretation.

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