The Grownup by Gillian Flynn
Genre: Thriller/Horror/Short Story
When I started reading this not-so-short story (the book is 64 pages long), I didn’t really like it at all. It starts off with a crass narrator talking about her job giving hand jobs. My first reaction was: okay, how is this classified as a thriller or horror story? But the story does pick up with psychics, ghosts, and a possibly haunted house with a possibly possessed teenage boy. I won’t spoil the story by delving any further into plot details, but about halfway through, I was hooked.
That’s kind of a long way in a short story, though. The hope is that the story would have drawn me in from the beginning, and since it didn’t, I’m left feeling kind of meh about the whole thing. On the one hand, the whole story had great writing and was done well. On the other, I wanted more of the creepiness that I got from the second half in the first.
The high points of this story are definitely the writing and Flynn’s ability to amp up the suspense, which I’ve appreciated in all of her books. If you can get a copy of this from the library or borrow it from a friend (or maybe if you can get a copy of the anthology it was originally published in), it’s totally worth the half hour or so it’ll take you to read it, even if only to appreciate Flynn’s writing and style.
Is it worth buying, though? Not really sure. It’s a little slow to start and while there’s a solid chunk of good suspense, it wasn’t one of my favorites. I gave this three stars, in part because I did enjoy the writing throughout.