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Extended Audio Sample Sharp Objects: A Novel Audiobook, by Gillian Flynn Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (39,925 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Gillian Flynn Narrator: Ann Marie Lee Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2006 ISBN: 9780739340189
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Wicked above her hipbone, Girl across her heart

Words are like a road map to reporter Camille Preaker’s troubled past. Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, Camille’s first assignment from the second-rate daily paper where she works brings her reluctantly back to her hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls.

Nasty on her kneecap, Babydoll on her leg

Since she left town eight years ago, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows: a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed again in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille is haunted by the childhood tragedy she has spent her whole life trying to cut from her memory.

Harmful on her wrist, Whore on her ankle

As Camille works to uncover the truth about these violent crimes, she finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Clues keep leading to dead ends, forcing Camille to unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past to get at the story. Dogged by her own demons, Camille will have to confront what happened to her years before if she wants to survive this homecoming.

With its taut, well-crafted writing, Sharp Objects is addictive, haunting, and unforgettable.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • A first novel that reads like the accomplished work of a long-time pro, the book draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction...Flynn's book goes deeper than your average thriller. It has all the narrative drive of a serious pop novel and much of the psychological complexity of a mainstream character study. All in all, a terrific debut. Alan Cheuse, The Chicago Tribune
  • A compulsively readable psychological thriller that marks [a] dazzling debut...[Flynn] has written a clever crime story with astonishing twists and turns, and enough suspense for the most demanding fans of the genre. But it is the sensitive yet disturbing depiction of her heroine that makes this an especially engrossing story...Flynn's empathic understanding of her major characters leads to storytelling that is sure and true, and it marks her a write to watch. Chicago Sun-Times
  • To say this is a terrific debut novel is really too mild. I haven't read such a relentlessly creepy family saga since John Farris's All Heads Turn as the Hunt Goes By, and that was thirty years ago, give or take. Sharp Objects isn't one of those scare-and-retreat books; its effect is cumulative. I found myself dreading the last thirty pages or so but was helpless to stop turning them. Then, after the lights were out, the story just stayed there in my head, coiled and hissing, like a snake in a cave. An admirably nasty piece of work, elevated by sharp writing and sharper insights. Stephen King
  • “An admirably nasty piece of work, elevated by sharp writing and sharper insights.”

    Stephen King

  • "[Flynn]] offers up a literary thriller that's a doozy...and she does it with wit and grit, a sort of Hitchcock visits Stephen King, with plenty of the former's offstage and often only implied violence, and the latter's sense of pacing and facility with dialogue...This is not a comfortable novel of touchy-feely family fun. Rather, it is a tough tale told with remarkable clarity and dexterity, particularly for a first-time author.
    Denver Post
  • "A tense, irresistable thriller...Flynn's first-person narration is pitch-perfect, but even more impressive is the way she orchestrates the slim novel's onrushing tension toward a heart-stopping climax.
    Seattle Post-Intelligencer
  • "Darkly original...Flynn expertly ratchets up the suspense...A disturbing yet riveting tale.
    People
  • "Skillful and disturbing...Flynn writes so well. Sometimes she dips her pen in acid, sometimes she is lyrical, but always she chooses her words deftly...She has an unsparing eye for human imperfection and for the evil that moves among us.
    Washington Post
  • "Using understated, almost stark prose, Flynn paints a jagged, unflinching portrait of the vise-like psychological bonds between women, and how their demons lead to the perpetuation of cruelties upon themselves and others. The end result is an unsettling portrait of how long emotional wounds can last- and how deeply they hurt.
    Baltimore Sun
  • "More in the tradition of Joyce Carol Oates than Agatha Christie, this one will leave readers profoundly disturbed. But from the first line...you know you're in the hands of a talented and accomplished writer.
    The Boston Globe
  • "[A] breathtaking debut...Written with multiple twists and turns, Sharp Objects is a work of psychological prowess and page-turning thrills.
    Richmond Times
  • Fans of psychological thrillers will welcome narrator/Chicago Daily Post reporter Camille Preaker with open arms...As first-time novelist Flynn expertly divulges in this tale reminiscent of the works of Shirley Jackson, there is much more to discover about Wind Gap and, most of all, about Camille. Library Journal
  • This impressive debut novel is fueled by stylish writing and compelling portraits...In a particularly seductive narrative style, Flynn adopts the cynical, knowing patter of a weary reporter, but it is her portraits of the town's backstabbing, social-climbing, bored, and bitchy females that provoke her sharpest and most entertaining writing. A stylish turn on dark crimes and even darker psyches. Booklist
  • [A] chilling debut thriller...[Flynn] writes fluidly of smalltown America. Publishers Weekly
  • Sharp Objects is one of the freshest debut thrillers to come around in a long while. It's a gripping, substantive story, stripped of cliche, and crafted with great style. The characters are refreshingly real, burdened with psychological issues that enrich the story. And the ending, which I was positive I could predict, is unpredictable. Sharp Objects is, indeed, quite sharp. Augusten Burroughs
  • “Sharp, clean, exciting writing that grabs you from the first page. A real pleasure. Kate Atkinson, author of Case Histories and One Good Turn
  • A deeply creepy exploration of small-town Midwestern values and boasts one of the most deliciously dysfunctional families to come along in a while...[Flynn] handles the narrative with confidence and a surprisingly high level of skill...Wind Gap ends up the sort of place you'd never want to visit. But with Sharp Objects, you're in no hurry to leave. San Francisco Chronicle
  • Brilliant...Powerful, mesmerizing...A stunning, powerful debut from someone who truly has something to say. San Jose Mercury News
  • "As suspenseful as the V.C. Andrews books you shared in high school, but much smarter.
    Glamour
  • One of the best and most disturbing books I have read in a long time...Flynn never stoops to the gratuitous, and the torment produces haunting characters that hung around my imagination long after I had finished the book. Her skillful blending of old tragedies with new culminated in an 'oh-my-gosh' moment that I never saw coming. This book simply blew me away. Kansas City Star
  • Don't look here for the unrelenting self-deprecation and the moping over men common chick lit...I promise you'll be thoroughly unnerved at the end. Newsweek
  • First-time novelist Flynn is a natural-born thriller. People Style Watch
  • A witty, stylish, and compelling debut. A real winner. Harlan Coben
  • Flynn delivers a great whodunit, replete with hinting details, telling dialogue, dissembling clues. Better yet, she offers appalling, heartbreaking insight into the darkness of her women's lives: the Stepford polish of desperate housewives, the backstabbing viciousness of drug-gobbling, sex-for-favors Mean Girls, the simmering rage bound to boil over. Piercingly effective and genuinely terrifying. Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
  • Not often enough, I come across a first novel so superb that it seems to have been written by an experienced author, perhaps with 20 earlier books to his or her credit. I'm extremely excited to discover my first debut blowout this year, a sad, horrifying book called Sharp Objects...[Flynn] is the real deal. Her story, writing and the characters will worm their way uncomfortably beneath your skin...But this is more literary novel than simple mystery, written with anguish and lyricism. It will be short-listed for one or more important awards at the end of the year...Sharp Objects is a 2006 favorite so far. I doubt I'll ever forget it. Cleveland Plain Dealer
  • “A witty, stylish, and compelling debut. A real winner.”

    Harlan Coben, New York Times bestselling author of Stay Close

  • “Sharp, clean, exciting writing that grabs you from the first page. A real pleasure.”

    Kate Atkinson, New York Times bestselling author of Started Early, Took My Dog

  • “A gripping, substantive story, stripped of cliché and crafted with great style.”

    Augesten Burroughs, New York Times bestselling author of This Is How

  • “A compulsively readable psychological thriller that marks [a] dazzling debut.”

    Chicago Sun Times

  • “Skillful and disturbing…Flynn writes so well. Sometimes she dips her pen in acid, sometimes she is lyrical, but always she chooses her words deftly.”

    Washington Post

  • “A deeply creepy exploration of small-town midwestern values and boasts one of the most deliciously dysfunctional families to come along in a while…[Flynn] handles the narrative with confidence and a…high level of skill.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “More in the tradition of Joyce Carol Oates than Agatha Christie, this one will leave readers profoundly disturbed. But from the first line…you know you’re in the hands of a talented and accomplished writer.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Darkly original…Flynn expertly ratchets up the suspense…A disturbing yet riveting tale.”

    People

  • “First-time novelist Flynn is a natural-born thriller.”

    People Style Watch

  • “Don’t look here for unrelenting self-deprecation and the moping over men common chick lit…I promise you’ll be thoroughly unnerved at the end.”

    Newsweek

  • “As suspenseful as the V. C. Andrews books you shared in high school but much smarter.”

    Glamour

  • “Brilliant…Mesmerizing…A stunning, powerful debut from someone who truly has something to say.”

    San Jose Mercury News

  • “[Flynn’s] skillful blending of old tragedies with new culminated in an ‘oh-my-gosh’ moment that I never saw coming. This book simply blew me away.”

    Kansas City Star

  • “[A] breathtaking debut…Written with multiple twists and turns, Sharp Objects is a work of psychological prowess and page-turning thrills.”

    Richmond Times

  • “[Flynn] is the real deal. Her story, writing, and the characters will worm their way uncomfortably beneath your skin…[Sharp Objects is] written with anguish and lyricism.”

    Cleveland Plain Dealer

  • “[Flynn] offers up a literary thriller that’s a doozy…and she does it with wit and grit, a sort of Hitchcock visits Stephen King…[Sharp Objects] is a tough tale told with remarkable clarity and dexterity, particularly for a first-time author.”

    Denver Post

  • “A tense, irresistable thriller…Flynn’s first-person narration is pitch-perfect, but even more impressive is the way she orchestrates the slim novel’s onrushing tension toward a heart-stopping climax.”

    Seatlle Post-Intelligencer

  • “Using understated, almost stark prose, Flynn paints a jagged, unflinching portrait of the vise-like psychological bonds between women and how their demons lead to the perpetuation of cruelties upon themselves and others. The end result is an unsettling portrait of how long emotional wounds can last—and how deeply they hurt.”

    Baltimore Sun

  • “Sinister, sexy, and stylish.”

    Amazon.com, editorial review

  • “Flynn writes with impressive authenticity about difficult, often painful, subject matter. As its title suggests, Sharp Objects is a cutting, incisive read.”

    Barnes & Noble, editorial review

  • “[A] chilling debut thriller…[Flynn] writes fluidly of small-town America.” 

    Publishers Weekly

  • “A stylish turn on dark crimes and even darker psyches.”

    Booklist

  • “Flynn delivers a great whodunit, replete with hinting details, telling dialogue, dissembling clues. Better yet, she offers appalling, heartbreaking insight into the darkness of her women’s lives…Piercingly effective and genuinely terrifying.”

    Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

  • “A first novel that reads like the accomplished work of a long-time pro, the book draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction…All in all, a terrific debut.”

    Chicago Tribune

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Winner of the 2007 CWA New Blood Dagger
  • Winner of the 2007 CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger
  • A 2007 Barry Award Finalist for Best First Novel
  • Selected for the Barnes & Noble Discover Award
  • A 2007 Edgar Allan Poe Award Nominee for Best First Novel

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Candy Tiley | 2/20/2014

    " Very unusual character and story. I can see why this would not appeal to everyone but I thought it rang true to the main character as she struggled with her past. She was also not a one dimensional person so that gave it depth and substance. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeannette | 2/19/2014

    " Creepy, dark & compelling. The first page or two feels like a Dashiell Hammett hard-boiled read with short, staccato sentences, setting the tone. The ending "explanation" is a bit tacked, but no matter, because I still enjoyed the ride. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kbpolizzi | 2/7/2014

    " Liked this better than Gone Girl. Creepy! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Danna | 2/6/2014

    " Good book, like this author. Lots of challenges and in true fashion, a Gillian Flynn page turner. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kelley | 2/6/2014

    " This book kind of started out slow and I figured out the who done it by the middle, but of course had to read it to the end anyways. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Erin | 1/27/2014

    " So disturbing and scary. I could not put it down. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lynda Mueggenborg | 1/23/2014

    " Disturbing. What does this say about me? Ha! This book was rather dark and twisted too, but Gillian really gives you a rare glimpse into people's flawed lives and makes you question who you really know. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Cathy Davis | 1/22/2014

    " not nearly as creative as Gone girl and I really didn't like it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Monique | 1/20/2014

    " I am giving this 3 stars not because I liked it-- It kept me up til 130 reading and then the rest of the night to scared to sleep. But I give it 3 stars because I think that was its aim, and it succeeded. Definitely well done, its creepiness sticks with me "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tiffany J | 1/18/2014

    " I'm really starting to like this author. Gone Girl left me speechless, this was a little less dramatic but excellently written and had me not wanting to stop reading. I love how the characters are 'human' and not predictable. A great book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeannie Aull | 1/7/2014

    " I liked this one more than Gone Girl. It was very dark but believable and really interesting. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kara Bykerk | 12/24/2013

    " I found this book to be pretty dark, but it was interesting and suspenseful. I had a hard time putting it down. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Patti Collins | 12/18/2013

    " So raw and dark that my heart broke - for that reason I'm not sure I'd recommend it to a friend. But talk about conveying feeling and a sense of unraveling a mystery. Wow. Amazingly written. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Masonlowe | 12/6/2013

    " Kind of disturbing, and a little far-fetched near the end, but hard to put down. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maria Manuel | 11/24/2013

    " This is not the genre I usually go for, maybe that is why I was a bit disappointed at the way the mistery unravels. The writing is great, raw and complex as are the characters. However, I wasn't surprised by the ending and found it quite predictable. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kerry | 11/23/2013

    " Wow can she dream up some sick and twisted characters. Intriguing! And I love her twists at the end of the story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Katherine Sullivan | 11/21/2013

    " Loved this book! Quick read kept me guessing!!! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Susan Smith | 11/13/2013

    " Good, but such a dysfunctional family, it was almost hard to read... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kristine | 9/14/2013

    " started the Gillian Flynn obsession "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amber Nicole | 8/19/2013

    " The creepiest, most graphic novel I have ever read. Not my type of book at all...yet I couldn't put it down! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jill Scott | 6/24/2013

    " Creepy. Gillian Flynn knows disfunction, that's for sure. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lisa Wing | 12/26/2012

    " This book was fab.. Can't wait to read the others.... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cassandra Goodwin | 10/26/2012

    " A dark and disturbing thriller. I liked the writing style of Gillian Flynn "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary Lynn | 9/16/2012

    " Read this book in two days! Crazy good but disturbing in parts. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Melissa Nery | 8/20/2012

    " It dragged in the beginning, but eventually picked up towards the middle. The reader is misled a few times, but everything starts making sense. Gillian Flynn is an amazing writer. She paints the gruesome picture for you and her characters have personality and are so real! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kathleen | 8/7/2012

    " It was sickly good! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Keith | 9/19/2011

    " I kept hearing how great Ms. Gillian is, but this book must be a first because it is weak. It is readable, but the story is slow and not compelling. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Robin | 8/12/2011

    " Fun, but not as entertaining as Gone Girl. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lyn Talbert | 7/23/2011

    " A page turner but not even close to the great Gone Girl. She's clearly honing her craft in Sharp Objects but it's predictable and overwrought. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tammy S | 7/19/2011

    " Good story and easy read. Story flowed and some parts surprised me- didn't have me at the edge of my seat but was a good story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Erin Schyck | 6/21/2011

    " Oh my...now I want words tattooed all over. Quick and exciting read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chelle | 5/25/2011

    " Amazing read. Very impressed :) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Chelsea | 5/18/2011

    " The chapter where Camille admits to being a cutter was hard for me to handle but the book as a whole was good. I loved the end. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 He-who-must-not-be-named | 5/16/2011

    " Quite an interesting and dark book. I was going to give it a 3.9 but I'll just round it up. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mindy | 5/14/2011

    " Quick, fast, edge of your seat thriller. To say it was also creepy is an understatement. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Claire | 5/12/2011

    " Very slow paced and a rubbish ending. Will not be rushing to read any more by this author. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris | 5/9/2011

    " Yikes! Not sure what else to say but that Sharp Objects is one wicked story. Wicked. Disturbing. Depressing. Lots of bad things that add up to one really good story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Celeste | 4/27/2011

    " Second time reading this book. It's my favorite. Excellent story and very well written. It's often painful to watch the main character make such poor decisions. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Teresa | 4/25/2011

    " Awsome book and well written!! Could not put it down til i knew who was doing the killing! Can not wait to read more from this author :) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Susan | 4/23/2011

    " Dark and twisted and full of twists and turns that keep you guessing until the very end! Just when you think you know.....you really don't. A great read! Great character's and story line! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dina Marie | 4/21/2011

    " Very good, could not put it down!


    "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Erin | 4/20/2011

    " This is the second book I've read by Gillian Flynn. Totally creepy and addictive reading. I eagerly await her next novel. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jimmakos | 4/20/2011

    " for this being her 1st book i'm satisfied.sometimes plot had lack of imagination and it was predictable but generally it's a book that it's easily read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katie | 4/20/2011

    " This book was well-written and eerie, but I felt like the two most likely endings became obvious far too early in the novel. "

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About the Author
Author Gillian FlynnGILLIAN FLYNN is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Gone Girl and the New York Times bestsellers Dark Places and Sharp Objects. A former writer and critic for Entertainment Weekly, her work has been published in 42 countries. She lives in Chicago with her husband and son.
About the Narrator

Ann Marie Lee is a seven-time winner of the AudioFile Earphones Award for narration. She is a Los Angeles–based actress with television credits that include ER, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and Nip/Tuck. Her stage performances for Broadway National Tours and regional theater include Peter Pan, As You Like It, Heartbreak House, and The Cherry Orchard.