Summary from Goodreads:
A canny young woman is struggling to survive by perpetrating various levels of mostly harmless fraud. On a rainy April morning, she is reading auras at Spiritual Palms when Susan Burke walks in. A keen observer of human behavior, our unnamed narrator immediately diagnoses beautiful, rich Susan as an unhappy woman eager to give her lovely life a drama injection. However, when the “psychic” visits the eerie Victorian home that has been the source of Susan’s terror and grief, she realizes she may not have to pretend to believe in ghosts anymore. Miles, Susan’s teenage stepson, doesn’t help matters with his disturbing manner and grisly imagination. The three are soon locked in a chilling battle to discover where the evil truly lurks and what, if anything, can be done to escape it.
So many people have said, time and time again, that this book was utterly disappointing. I have heard so many people tell me not to bother with this one; that it was a waste of time. So, naturally, what do I do? Of course, I go ahead and read it. I do exactly what people tell me not to do. Lol. How else was I going to form my own opinion on it?!
To be fair, had I not known that George R.R. Martin asked Gillian Flynn to contribute to his collection of short stories about thieves, con artists, and etc., I don’t think I’d have appreciated this short story as much. Or at all, honestly. But since I was very well aware of this, I actually was impressed with how this short story played out.
I think this is one of those stories that you either get…or you just don’t… The ending left so much room for imagination. It was confusing and unresolved, yes. But that was what I enjoyed about it. Not every story needs to make sense, no? They just need to be capable of sparking SOME sort of strong feelings from or within you. Did you feel betrayed by the story? Probably. Did you feel as if you’ve been conned? I bet. But is that not what makes this story so great in the end?
With the knowledge that Gillian Flynn was asked to write a story about thieves and con artists alike, this story becomes even more impressive if you just think about it. I definitely feel like I’ve been conned in the end. In that sense, Gillian Flynn very much delivered with this piece.
You’re probably wondering “Why only 3/5 stars then?” Well not everything can be perfect, now can it? I thought some parts of the story could have used a little bit more work. I also think the story itself had a lot of potential to be more developed had it been just a little bit longer. But beggars can’t be choosers.