Gone Girl

Gone Girl

by

Gillian Flynn

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Gone Girl can help.

Amy Elliott Dunne Character Analysis

Amy Elliott Dunne is the diabolical dual protagonist and antagonist of Gone Girl. Amy is wealthy, beautiful, and born and bred in New York. When readers first meet Amy through her diary entries, she is a successful quiz-writer for a women’s magazine and living in Manhattan off the trust fund that her parents—writers of the insanely popular Amazing Amy series of children’s books, cribbed from Amy’s real-life successes and challenges alike—have set aside for her. Nick Dunne sweeps her off her feet, and Amy and Nick live out a fairytale existence as they shirk gender norms, commit radically to their love for one another, and weather layoffs, family illnesses, and even financial setbacks with iron resolve. The story Amy tells in her diaries, though, grows dark and twisted as she begins recounting the physical, psychological, and emotional abuse she suffers at Nick’s hands once they move to his hometown of Carthage, Missouri, to care for his ailing parents. Amy goes missing at the start of the novel, and her diary entries are interspersed with her selfish husband Nick’s half-hearted involvement in the investigation. At the midpoint of the novel, it’s revealed that Amy has masterminded her own disappearance—and orchestrated the evidence left behind to frame Nick for her murder as a way of getting revenge for all the ways in which their marriage has gone wrong. Amy feels that because Nick has taken her time, money, heart, and altered forever the course of her life—only to begin an affair with his much-younger student, Andie—his punishment should fit the crime of murder. Amy ultimately lies, cheats, steals, and kills to get back to Carthage, deciding that she wants to recommit to the lie she and Nick have been living and pretend to be representatives of the perfect American marriage. Selfish, conniving, contemptuous, spoiled, deceitful, and wickedly funny, Amy’s narration offers damning truths about several of the novel’s major themes: marriage, vengeance, misogyny and misandry, and the way people—especially couples—seek to control the narratives of their lives.

Amy Elliott Dunne Quotes in Gone Girl

The Gone Girl quotes below are all either spoken by Amy Elliott Dunne or refer to Amy Elliott Dunne. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Crown Publishers edition of Gone Girl published in 2012.
1. Nick Dunne, The Day Of (1) Quotes

When I think of my wife, I always think of her head. […] And what’s inside it. I think of that too: her mind. Her brain, all those coils, and her thoughts shuttling through those coils like fast, frantic centipedes. Like a child, I picture opening her skull, unspooling her brain and sifting through it, trying to catch and pin down her thoughts. What are you thinking, Amy? The question I’ve asked most often during our marriage, if not out loud, if not to the person who could answer. I suppose these questions stormcloud over every marriage: What are you thinking? How are you feeling? Who are you? What have we done to each other? What will we do?

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Page Number: 3
Explanation and Analysis:
3. Nick Dunne, The Day Of (2) Quotes

“Don’t let [Amy] worry you.” Go lit a cigarette. She smoked exactly one a day. “Women are crazy.” Go didn’t consider herself part of the general category of women, a word she used derisively.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Margo “Go” Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Page Number: 18
Explanation and Analysis:
4. Amy, Diary Entry, Sep 18th, 2005 Quotes

My parents have always worried that I’d take Amy too personally—they always tell me not to read too much into her. And yet I can’t fail to notice that whenever I screw something up, Amy does it right… […] This used to drive me mad… […] That my parents, two child psychologists, chose this particular public form of passive-aggressiveness toward their child was not just fucked up but also stupid and weird and kind of hilarious. So be it.

Related Characters: Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Rand Elliott, Marybeth Elliott
Related Symbols: Amy’s Diary
Page Number: 26-27
Explanation and Analysis:
6. Amy, Diary Entry, July 5th, 2008 Quotes

I am fat with love! Husky with ardor! Morbidly obese with devotion! A happy, busy bumblebee of marital enthusiasm. I positively hum around him, fussing and fixing. I have become a strange thing. I have become a wife. I find myself steering the ship of conversations—bulkily, unnaturally—just so I can say his name aloud. I have become a wife, I have become a bore, I have been asked to forfeit my Independent Young Feminist card. I don’t care. I balance his checkbook, I trim his hair.

Related Characters: Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Nick Dunne
Related Symbols: Amy’s Diary
Page Number: 38
Explanation and Analysis:
13. Nick Dunne, Two Days Gone Quotes

“People think they know [Amy] because they read the books growing up,” I said.

“I can see that,” Boney said, nodding. “People want to believe they know other people. Parents want to believe they know their kids. Wives want to believe they know their husbands.”

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Rhonda Boney (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Page Number: 91
Explanation and Analysis:
14. Amy, Diary Entry, Sep 15th, 2010 Quotes

[Nick] promised to take care of me, and yet I feel afraid. I feel like something is going wrong, very wrong, and that it will get even worse. I don’t feel like Nick’s wife. I don’t feel like a person at all: I am something to be loaded and unloaded, like a sofa or a cuckoo clock. I am something to be tossed into a junkyard, thrown into the river, if necessary. I don’t feel real anymore. I feel like I could disappear.

Related Characters: Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Nick Dunne
Related Symbols: Amy’s Diary
Page Number: 102
Explanation and Analysis:
17. Nick Dunne, Four Days Gone (1) Quotes

I felt a surge of angst. What a fucking day. Boney was out to get me, Noelle was insane, Shawna was pissed, Hilary was resentful, the woman at the security company was a bitch, and my wife had stumped me finally. It was time to end this goddamn day.

Page Number: 135
Explanation and Analysis:
29. Nick Dunne, Seven Days Gone (1) Quotes

Amy was blooming large in my mind. She was gone, and yet she was more present than anyone else. I’d fallen in love with Amy because I was the ultimate Nick with her. Loving her made me superhuman, it made me feel alive. […] Amy made me believe I was exceptional, that I was up to her level if play. That was both our making and undoing. Because I couldn’t handle the demands of greatness. […] I turned her into the brittle, prickly thing she became. I had pretended to be one kind of man and revealed myself to be quite another.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Page Number: 214
Explanation and Analysis:
30. Amy Elliott Dunne, The Day Of (1) Quotes

I’m so much happier now that I’m dead.

Technically, missing. Soon to be presumed dead. But as shorthand, we’ll say dead. It’s been only a matter of hours, but I feel better already: loose joints, wavy muscles. At one point this morning, I realized my face felt strange, different. I looked in the rearview mirror—dread Carthage forty-three miles behind me, my smug husband lounging around his sticky bar as mayhem dangled on a thin piano wire just above his shitty, oblivious head—and I realized I was smiling. Ha! That’s new.

Related Characters: Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Nick Dunne
Page Number: 219
Explanation and Analysis:

That night at the Brooklyn party, I was playing the girl who was in style, the girl a man like Nick wants: the Cool Girl. Men always say that as the defining compliment, don’t they? She’s a cool girl. Being the Cool Girl means I am a hot, brilliant, funny woman who adores football, poker, dirty jokes, and burping, who plays video games, drinks cheap beer, loves threesomes and anal sex, and jams hot dogs and hamburgers into her mouth like she’s hosting the world’s biggest culinary gang bang while somehow maintaining a size 2, because Cool Girls are above all hot. Hot and understanding. Cool Girls never get angry; they only smile in a chagrined, loving manner and let their men do whatever they want. Go ahead, shit on me, l don’t mind, I’m the Cool Girl.

Men actually think this girl exists.

Related Characters: Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Nick Dunne
Page Number: 222
Explanation and Analysis:
31. Nick Dunne, Seven Days Gone (2) Quotes

[Amy] knew she’d punish me good. Now at our final stop, Amy was ready for me to know how clever she was. Because the woodshed was packed with about every gizmo and gadget that I swore to Boney and Gilpin I hadn’t bought with the credit cards I swore I didn’t know anything about. The insanely expensive golf clubs were here, the watches and game consoles, the designer clothes, they were all sitting here, in wait, on my sister’s property. Where it looked like I’d stored them until my wife was dead and I could have a little fun.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Related Symbols: The Woodshed
Page Number: 227
Explanation and Analysis:

I looked at the puppets. “So she’s giving me the narrative of my frame-up.”

“I can’t even wrap my brain around this. Fucking psycho.”

“Go?”

“Yeah, right: You didn’t want her to be pregnant, you got angry and killed her and the unborn baby.”

“Feels anticlimactic somehow,” I said.

“The climax is when you are taught the lesson that Punch never learns, and you are caught and charged with murder.”

“And Missouri has the death penalty,” I said. “Fun game.”

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Margo “Go” Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Related Symbols: The Punch and Judy Puppets
Page Number: 232
Explanation and Analysis:
32. Amy Elliott Dunne, The Day Of (2) Quotes

I could hear the tale, how everyone would love telling it: how Amazing Amy, the girl who never did wrong, let herself be dragged, penniless, to the middle of the country, where her husband threw her over for a younger woman. How predictable, how perfectly average, how amusing. And her husband? He ended up happier than ever. No. I couldn’t allow that. […]

I changed my name for that piece of shit. Historical records have been altered—Amy Elliott to Amy Dunne—like it’s nothing. No, he does not get to win.

So I began to think of a different story, a better story, that would destroy Nick for doing this to me. A story that would restore my perfection. It would make me the hero, flawless and adored.

Because everyone loves the Dead Girl.

Related Characters: Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Nick Dunne
Page Number: 234
Explanation and Analysis:
39. Nick Dunne, Eight Days Gone (3) Quotes

“My wife, she just happens to be the coolest girl I’ve ever met. How many guys can say that? I married the coolest girl I ever met.”

Youfuckingbitchyoufuckingbitchyoufuckingbitch. Come home so I can kill you.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne, Rebecca
Page Number: 300
Explanation and Analysis:
49. Nick Dunne, Fourteen Days Gone Quotes

I spent the rest of my day picturing how I’d kill Amy. It was all I could think of: finding a way to end her. Me smashing in Amy’s busy, busy brain. I had to give Amy her due: I may have been dozing the past few years, but I was fucking wide awake now. I was electric again, like I had been in the early days of our marriage.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Page Number: 357
Explanation and Analysis:
53. Nick Dunne, Forty Days Gone Quotes

I gestured to the twine, the hacked hair, the dried blood. “So, what’s your story, wife?”

“I’m back,” she whimpered. “I made it back to you.” She moved to put her arms around me. I moved away.

“What is your story, Amy?”

“Desi,” she whispered, her lower lip trembling. “Desi Collings took me. It was the morning. Of. Of our anniversary. And the doorbell rang, and I thought... I don’t know, I thought maybe it was flowers from you.”

I flinched. Of course she’d find a way to work in a gripe: that I hardly ever sent her flowers, when her dad had sent her mom flowers each week since they’d been married. That’s 2,444 bouquets of flowers vs. 4.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Desi Collings
Page Number: 372
Explanation and Analysis:
57. Nick Dunne, The Night of the Return (2) Quotes

Who will 1 be then? The question wasn’t recriminatory. It wasn’t like the answer was the pious: Then you’ll be a killer, Nick. You’ll be as bad as Amy. You’ll be what everyone thought you were. No. The question was frighteningly soulful and literal: Who would I be without Amy to react to? Because she was right: As a man, I had been my most impressive when I loved her—and I was my next best self when I hated her. I had known Amy only seven years, but I couldn’t go back to life without her.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Page Number: 396
Explanation and Analysis:
60. Amy, Eight Weeks After the Return Quotes

I have a book deal: I am officially in control of our story. It feels wonderfully symbolic. Isn’t that what every marriage is, anyway? Just a lengthy game of he-said, she-said? Well, she is saying, and the world will listen, and Nick will have to smile and agree. I will write him the way I want him to be: romantic and thoughtful and very very repentant—about the credit cards and the purchases and the woodshed. If I can’t get him to say it out loud, he’ll say it in my book. Then he’ll come on tour with me and smile and smile.

I’m calling the book simply: Amazing.

Related Characters: Amy Elliott Dunne (speaker), Nick Dunne
Related Symbols: The Woodshed
Page Number: 406
Explanation and Analysis:
63. Nick Dunne, Twenty Weeks After the Return Quotes

Yes, I am finally a match for Amy. The other morning I woke up next to her, and I studied the back of her skull. I tried to read her thoughts. For once I didn’t feel like I was staring into the sun. I’m rising to my wife’s level of madness. Because I can feel her changing me again: I was a callow boy, and then a man, good and bad. Now at last I’m the hero. I am the one to root for in the never-ending war story of our marriage. It’s a story I can live with. Hell, at this point, I can’t imagine my story without Amy. She is my forever antagonist. We are one long frightening climax.

Related Characters: Nick Dunne (speaker), Amy Elliott Dunne
Page Number: 413
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Gone Girl LitChart as a printable PDF.
Gone Girl PDF

Amy Elliott Dunne Character Timeline in Gone Girl

The timeline below shows where the character Amy Elliott Dunne appears in Gone Girl. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
1. Nick Dunne, The Day Of (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
When Nick Dunne thinks of his wife, Amy, he writes, he “always think[s] of her head.” It is “finely shaped” and unique, but... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and hardly ever gets up before 9:00 a.m. His life is “alarmless” since he and Amy moved to Nick’s hometown of Carthage, Missouri, from New York City. Amy and Nick, both... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
...soon die, Nick “almost cried with relief” in spite of the fact that he knew Amy knew little and cared less about his mother and his hometown alike. (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
As Nick watches the sunrise, thinks about the day ahead of him. He hears Amy downstairs banging around in the kitchen, making breakfast. Today is their five-year wedding anniversary. Nick,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...bar together—a dream they’ve shared since their teen years. They borrowed eighty thousand dollars from Amy to do so—a sum that was once “nothing” to her, but after the recession was... (full context)
2. Amy Elliott, Diary Entry, January 8th, 2005
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes in her diary that she is “embarrassed” by how happy she is—she has met... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...party is raucous and decadent, everyone there “still glutted and sugar-pissed from the holidays,” and Amy gets separated from her friends. A man approaches Amy, and she finds him cocky and... (full context)
3. Nick Dunne, The Day Of (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick tells Go it’s his anniversary with Amy, and Go asks if he’s going to be subjected to another one of Amy’s “treasure... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Go, who “used to being the alpha girl” in Nick’s life, never took to Amy. The two women rarely spend any time together in spite of having known one another... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick finds the door wide open and becomes nervous. He goes inside and calls for Amy, but she doesn’t answer. The living room has been wrecked—the coffee table is shattered, an... (full context)
4. Amy Elliott, Diary Entry, September 18th, 2005
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
After their kiss in the sugar storm, Amy has not seen Nick Dunne for over eight months. Nick “resurfaces” in Amy’s life when... (full context)
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
For Amy’s entire life, her parents have published Amazing Amy books that coincide with their daughter’s experiences.... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Back at her apartment after the party, Amy cries. She is nearly thirty-two, and despite being pretty, interesting, and rich, she has no... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
The day after the party, Amy runs into Nick on Seventh Avenue, and feels the “pow” of recognition. It seems like... (full context)
5. Nick Dunne, The Day Of (3)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...the police, waits anxiously in the kitchen for them to arrive. He has tried phoning Amy and has left her several messages, but she hasn’t returned any of his calls. Nick... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...demeanor, and ask Nick run-of-the mill questions in spite of his increasing nervousness as to Amy’s whereabouts. He tells the detectives that he and Amy used to live in New York,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Back downstairs, Nick looks at a picture on the wall of his and Amy’s wedding day. He recalls their Cape Cod ceremony, and gets lost in memories which lie... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...Nick and examines the picture with him. Nick tells her that today is his and Amy’s fifth wedding anniversary. He feels jittery and can’t stand still—he wants to “do something” to... (full context)
6. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, July 5th, 2008
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy ecstatically declares herself “a happy, busy bumblebee of marital enthusiasm.” She is shocked by her... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick and Amy’s life together as a married couple is blissful, fun, and uncomplicated. They do things like... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As their one-year anniversary approaches, Amy constructs a scavenger hunt filled with clues to celebrate their traditions and inside jokes. She... (full context)
7. Nick Dunne, The Night Of
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...Nick to the small Carthage police station. They ask him if he wants to call Amy’s parents, but Nick insists waiting just a couple more hours to see if she turns... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...and agrees to answer her questions on tape. Nick answers Boney’s questions about his and Amy’s old lives in New York and their new ones here—he divulges that Amy excelled as... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Boney asks Nick if Amy could have gotten involved with drugs—layoffs and stagnancy in the wake of the recession has... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and no one can confirm his whereabouts. What Nick doesn’t tell the police is that Amy had suggested he go to the beach this morning—over breakfast, she said she knew that... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...she’s asked Nick, begins listing the things the police are doing to help track down Amy: they are monitoring her cell phone and credit cards, interviewing known sex offenders in the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...the investigation seriously—but the most Nick can do right now is tell them more about Amy. As Nick describes his wife to the police, he tells more and more lies—he is... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
At Go’s house, Go suggests they go out and drive around looking for Amy, but Nick says doing so would be utterly pointless. Go seems more worked up about... (full context)
8. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, April 21st, 2009
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
“Poor me,” Amy writes in her diary. She describes having dinner with two of her girlfriends, during which... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy and Nick arrive home at their brownstone at the same time. Amy blithely asks Nick... (full context)
9. Nick Dunne, One Day Gone (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick, seeing the silver present Amy wrapped for him, asks Velasquez if anyone has looked inside yet. She nods. Nick asks... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and tearfully and reassure him that they are all going to work together to find Amy. Nick only has a moment alone with his in-laws before chaos descends on them all—a... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...a large conference room, where on a nearby easel there sits a giant photo of Amy, smiling and looking beautiful. Cameras flash as Nick and the others take their places at... (full context)
10. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, July 5th, 2010
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that she refuses to blame Nick for being laid off—along with fifteen other writers—from... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick gets home at four in the morning. Amy is waiting up for him, angry that he’s missed their anniversary. When Nick doesn’t say... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...to bed angry, and have rarely had arguments as pointed and personal as this one. Amy goes over to the trash can and digs through it, pulling out Nick’s receipts from... (full context)
11. Nick Dunne, One Day Gone (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...the night before to show him, lying on the table, the silvery gift box from Amy. Inside, nestled in tissue paper, is an envelope bearing the words “FIRST CLUE.” Gilpin laughs,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...the envelope marked with a heart, he sees that it contains a gushing letter from Amy describing how “brilliant” Nick is. Nick finishes reading the note, confused and flattered, but continues... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and Marybeth lets him in; together, they watch the five o’clock news from St. Louis. Amy’s disappearance is the lead story. Rand asks Nick how he’s holding up, and they all... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...asked them about him—they console Nick and promise him that they know he’d never hurt Amy, and have told the police as much. Rand and Marybeth tell Nick that they love... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Another of Amy’s stalkers was her boarding-school boyfriend Desi Collings, a wealthy classmate who approached his relationship with... (full context)
12. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, August 23rd, 2010
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy walks through Prospect Park in Brooklyn, thinking of how much of her life has come... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
One afternoon, Amy comes home and begins cleaning the apartment. She finds bags full of luxury bespoke goods... (full context)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
When Amy gets nervous about their “his-and-her layoffs,” she checks her bank account to calm her mind—she... (full context)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
One day, Marybeth and Rand call to ask if they can come over. Amy grows frightened, afraid that one of her parents has fallen ill—instead, when they arrive, they... (full context)
13. Nick Dunne, Two Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...with Marybeth and Rand to an underused ballroom the inn has donated as a Find Amy Dunne headquarters and the three of them begin spiffing it up. At ten, Boney arrives,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Boney asks Nick why he never mentioned Noelle Hawthorne—Amy’s best friend. Nick assures Boney that Amy isn’t friends with anyone named Noelle, but does... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...tow. Nick thinks back to his mother’s illness—Maureen always wanted grandchildren, but never knew that Amy, who’d been 37 when they moved back to Carthage, did not want children. One of... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...on the scene suggests he stay by the trail entrance with flyers and posters of Amy to be “friendly and encouraging” to anyone who arrives to help join the search. He... (full context)
14. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, September 15th, 2010
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes a diary entry from an anonymous motel off the highway in Pennsylvania. She and... (full context)
15. Nick Dunne, Three Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...center, and as Nick picks listlessly at a Danish, he overhears two men discussing how Amy could have been chopped into pieces and thrown in the river—if so, her body would... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marybeth and Rand are frustrated by the police’s refusal to look into one of Amy’s old stalkers, Hilary Handy, who lives five hours away in Tennessee. Marybeth pleads with Nick... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...good ten unscheduled hours to work with.” Nick gets into his car, where he removes Amy’s second clue from his pocket and reads it. It makes reference to his “boyhood adventures”... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...Street, full of closed storefronts and depressing tourist traps, he laments that he has “brought Amy to the end of everything.” The end of their jobs and print journalism in general,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick arrives at one of the spots referenced in Amy’s clue and goes inside—it is an old courthouse where Mark Twain’s father once worked. Nick... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...and commiserate. Go asks Nick if he’s okay—she thinks he’s being “weird” about everything concerning Amy’s disappearance. He admits that he knows hasn’t been acting or even feeling upset enough—Go says... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...sprawled out all over the floor. Nick and the Hillsam brothers begin asking questions about Amy, insisting that it’s not her drug use they’re worried about, but rather the idea that... (full context)
16. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, October 16th, 2010
Marriage Theme Icon
Amy writes peppily in her diary, celebrating her one-month anniversary in Missouri. Although Amy misses New... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Though Amy delights in bulk shopping at Costco and marvels at the “cheap and easy” casserole recipes... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Towards the end of the housewarming party, Bill has a fit and begins cursing at Amy, claiming she doesn’t belong in the house and calling her a “dumb bitch.” As he... (full context)
17. Nick Dunne, Four Days Gone (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Rand and Nick are sitting in the empty Find Amy Dunne headquarters in the wee hours of morning, waiting for the cops to check on... (full context)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...men in on her questioning of Lonnie—the woman he saw at the mall was definitely Amy, but Boney doubts he has anything to do with her disappearance. Boney and Gilpin state... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...have a few more questions for him. They tell him that one of Nick and Amy’s neighbors has told the police that the couple were heard loudly having an argument the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...the hotel. Back at headquarters, Nick decides to dial the number for Hilary Handy—one of Amy’s high-school stalkers. Hilary tries to hang up on Nick, but he calls her back and... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...minute, his phone rings. The call center on the other end asks for the password: Amy’s first pet’s name. Nick, frustrated with Amy’s endless trivia, snaps at the woman on the... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
As Nick gathers his thoughts, he sees Amy’s next clue sitting on the kitchen counter. Again, it is a note praising Nick’s warmth... (full context)
18. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, April 28th, 2011
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy’s life in Missouri is difficult. Nick has lost all interest in taking care of his... (full context)
19. Nick Dunne, Four Days Gone (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...dress down and places Nick’s hands on her breasts, he can’t help but think of Amy, and he recoils. (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...just sex, he has come to truly love Andie. Andie doesn’t see Nick the way Amy does—instead of considering him a laid-off magazine writer, Andie only knows him as a successful... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...carried on the affair for months and months, promising himself all the while he’d tell Amy and ask for a divorce. Every time he psyched himself up to do so, though,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...the end of all this if they’re both very “careful.” He entreats Andie to take Amy’s disappearance “seriously,” and she promises she will—but demands Nick call her once a day, every... (full context)
20. Amy Elliot Dunne, Diary Entry, July 21st, 2011
Marriage Theme Icon
“I am such an idiot,” Amy writes. She feels “ridiculous, frivolous, [and] spoiled” in Missouri, crushed by the gravity of Maureen’s... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
That night, Nick slips into bed with Amy past eleven. He’s heard some of what happened from Maureen, but claims he couldn’t pick... (full context)
21. Nick Dunne, Five Days Gone (1)
Misogyny Theme Icon
Nick falls back asleep and dreams of Amy, her head misshapen and bloody. He knows that he needs to go home and face... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
...having been told. He and Nick sit down in the living room, and begin discussing Amy. Desi admits that when he saw the story on the news for the first time,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As Desi describes his relationship with Amy—in which he basked in her attention in its early stages, and became desperate once she... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As the conversation goes on, Desi admits to having written Amy letters over the years. Jacqueline praises them for sustaining the lost art of letter-writing. Nick... (full context)
22. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, August 17th, 2011
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes about how there has recently been a change in Nick after many months of... (full context)
23. Nick Dunne, Five Days Gone (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...Nick gets a voicemail from Gilpin asking him to meet the detectives at his and Amy’s house at four. He drives back to Carthage, and soon finds himself in the living... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Boney asks Nick about his whereabouts during the time frame Amy went missing—when he was down at the beach. She says if he could give them... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...a much different crime scene. Gilpin adds that a Luminol sweep of the kitchen “lit up”—Amy lost a good deal of blood in there. They have matched trace amounts of blood... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Boney and Gilpin begin questioning Nick about the state of his and Amy’s marriage—he insists everything between them was fine, but knows she can tell he’s lying. Nick... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and Gilpin continue asking Nick about his marriage, and the kinds of things he and Amy would fight about. Nick eventually admits that he and Amy squabbled about domestic responsibilities—and their... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...seven thousand dollars for new clubs. Boney says that Noelle Hawthorne has told them that Amy was upset about finances, and worried Nick had “married her for her money.” Nick insists... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...Boney begin peppering Nick with other incriminating information. They point out that Nick bumped up Amy’s life insurance coverage to over a million dollars last month, and googled “Body Float Mississippi... (full context)
24. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, October 21st, 2011
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that Nick’s mother, Maureen, has died. She stayed positive until the end, even in... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
That evening, after Nick roughly has sex with Amy up against a wall, she asks him if it’s the “right time” for them to... (full context)
25. Nick Dunne, Six Days Gone (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...ready to attend a candlelight vigil in a nearby park. In the last twenty-four hours, Amy’s story has gone national—though she’s been missing a week, she’s suddenly front-page news. The media... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...flee together towards Go’s car, ignoring reporters who chase after them questioning Nick about whether Amy was—or is—truly pregnant. (full context)
26. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, February 15th, 2012
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that something is “horribly wrong” with her husband, Nick. She can feel him watching... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that yesterday, she drove out to the run-down mall, where Noelle has told her... (full context)
27. Nick Dunne, Six Days Gone (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...Nick and Go speed away from the vigil, Nick wonders if the detectives already knew Amy was pregnant, and are trying to make Nick look as bad as possible—which would mean... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...a phone call from Rand, who angrily demands to know whether Nick was aware of Amy’s pregnancy. Nick tries to delicately tell his father-in-law that not only did he have no... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
...soon have to stop and come clean. Nick asks Go if she thinks he killed Amy—Go replies only that she “would still love [him]” if he did. Nick states definitively that... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
...paparazzi, and he waits uneasily for a call from the police to come in about Amy’s medical records. His father’s nursing home calls to tell him that Bill has gotten out... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
...the house when a cop car pulls up—it is Boney, who delivers the news that Amy was pregnant after all. Nick knows that Boney is watching to see what his reaction... (full context)
28. Amy Elliott Dunne, Diary Entry, June 26th, 2012
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that she has never felt more “alive” in her life. Earlier this morning, she... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy knows that her “value” to Nick has decreased. She is nearing forty and has lost... (full context)
29. Nick Dunne, Seven Days Gone (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...professional and dignified. As Nick sits on the sofa waiting for his appointment, he pulls Amy’s clue from his pocket and rereads it, trying to figure out what the “end prize”... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...the case. Tanner says they need to find an alternative suspect, keep the support of Amy’s parents, and fix Nick’s image. Tanner asks when the last time Nick spoke to Amy’s... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Tanner asks Nick to make a list of “all the nice things” he’s done for Amy over the years. Nick is troubled to find that he can’t think of a single... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
...by how easy it is. He also ruminates on the history of his relationship with Amy. Though she’s gone, she’s “more present than anyone else.” Looking back on why he fell... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As Nick arrives home, he finally believes he has solved Amy’s final clue—he thinks she’s gotten them a wooden cradle and hidden it away somewhere. He... (full context)
30. Amy Elliott Dunne, The Day Of (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
“I am so much happier,” Amy writes, “now that I’m dead.” Though she’s “technically [just] missing,” for now, Amy knows she’ll... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy reaches into the passenger seat of her cheap getaway car and pull out her checklist... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Earlier this morning, Amy took a boxcutter to the inside of her upper arm, and then sat cross-legged on... (full context)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that she wants her readers to finally know her—not “Diary Amy, who is a... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick’s deep, all-consuming love for Amy was the first time in her life she’d felt truly appreciated—but at the same time,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy thinks about how stupid all men are for believing the Cool Girl actually exists—really, she... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy is able to admit that there were parts of being Nick’s Cool Girl she enjoyed—she... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Eventually, Amy writes, she grew tired of being the Cool Girl, and started showing Nick the real... (full context)
31. Nick Dunne, Seven Days Gone (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...sex with Andie when they were sneaking around. He realizes now that the other spots Amy left clues—his father’s abandoned house and his office at school, and even Hannibal—are all places... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...Go out to the woodshed to show her what’s going on. He tells her that Amy is framing him for her murder, feeling like he is going to “sob or laugh”... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and try to figure out the full picture of what’s going on. Nick realizes that Amy arranged the treasure hunt to keep him busy, and that the puppets are a message... (full context)
32. Amy Elliott Dunne, The Day Of (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy reveals that she saw Nick and Andie together months and months ago—when she showed up... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that she’s fully aware of how “extreme” it is to frame one’s husband for... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As Amy approaches the hundred-mile mark on her journey, she reflects on the way she plotted the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy writes that she must figure out how to be “Dead Amy.” She was able to... (full context)
34. Amy Elliott Dunne, Five Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Hidden in an extended-stay motel called the Hide-A-Way Cabins in the middle of the Ozark, Amy is able to sit back, relax, and watch the drama she’s engineered unfold. At 10:00... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
When she turns on the television, Amy is thrilled to see that Ellen Abbott has picked up her story. She is delighted... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy has planned well for herself: she has a little over ten thousand dollars in cash,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy has met a couple people in the Ozarks—one of her neighbors, Jeff, brings her fresh... (full context)
35. Nick Dunne, Eight Days Gone (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Boney tells Nick that cops have turned up Amy’s purse on a riverbank outside of Hannibal, Boney says the purse has Nick’s fingerprints all... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...He, Nick, and Go all settle down together at the kitchen table with all of Amy’s clues, and Tanner asks Nick to tell him a story that will convince him that... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick continues explaining each of Amy’s twisting, rhyming clues, laying out for Tanner the diabolical intent behind each one. He admits... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...out that there are incriminating pieces of evidence at each stop—panties that don’t belong to Amy at Nick’s office, a purse in Hannibal, and credit-card purchases in the woodshed. With equal... (full context)
36. Amy Elliott Dunne, Seven Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As the news of Amy’s (fake) pregnancy finally makes the national news, Amy watches on with glee. She reveals the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
After a few hours of television, Amy puts on a swimsuit and goes down to the pool. She frets about being unable... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Down at the pool, Amy runs into one of her new neighbors—a girl who’s staying in the cabin next door... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Later that afternoon, Amy goes over to Greta’s. Greta makes the two of them some deli-meat sandwiches, and they... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...watching the program as it transitions into disparaging coverage of Nick. Greta looks over at Amy suspiciously, and says she hopes that Nick didn’t kill his wife—she hopes the woman “ran... (full context)
37. Nick Dunne, Eight Days Gone (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...about the items in the woodshed, or Andie, as evidence of Nick’s guilt rather than Amy’s plan, he asks Nick to definitively, once and for all, state where he was the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick returns home after noon and finds the street outside his and Amy’s house lined with reporters and news vans. Nick dodges their questions and heads inside for... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...furious that Marybeth and Rand are treating him like this—they are the ones who “created [Amy].” Nick attempts to soothe Marybeth, promising he never would have hurt Amy, but she says... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...fall apart even more. Nick knows he needs to find a way to prove that Amy is not who she has been pretending to be, and is inspired to call up... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...Nick that Nick is totally screwed—Nick asks Tommy to tell him about the assault charge Amy filed against him. Tommy insists that he never raped Amy, and likens her to the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Tommy tried to get some space away from Amy without breaking up with her, hoping that things could still turn around. When Tommy started... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
After putting Tommy through weeks of hell, Amy dropped the charges—two weeks later, he received a typed anonymous note in the mail which... (full context)
38. Amy Elliott Dunne, Eight Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Amy goes to a little amusement park with Greta and Jeff—though they’re an “odd crew,” the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
After mini-golf, Amy goes with her new friends for lunch at a hot-dog stand. She reaches into the... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
That night, Jeff knocks on Amy’s door. Earlier, Amy told Dorothy at the front desk that she was strapped for cash... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
...a quick dip in the lake to get all of the catfish detritus off of them—Amy, not wanting to seem suspicious, agrees. She waits until Jeff is already in the lake,... (full context)
39. Nick Dunne, Eight Days Gone (3)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Realizing that his own “murder” of Amy is a lie—as is Tommy O’Hara’s “rape”—Nick begins to wonder if Hilary Handy, too, was... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...explains that she was a transfer from Memphis in her freshman year of high school. Amy took Hilary under her wing, and Hilary became devoted to Amy as a way of... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Soon after, Amy accused Hilary of pushing her down a long flight of stairs—Hilary did no such thing,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Alone in his “haunted” house that night, Nick can’t stop thinking about whether Amy’s pregnancy is genuine or a lie meant to drive him insane. Nick had always wanted... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick went on his own to the center three times to give semen samples, but Amy seemed uncommitted to following the regimen of medicine the doctors laid out for her. A... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...Carthage to cover Nick. Realizing he has a strange opportunity to try and connect with Amy—wherever she might be—Nick begins telling Rebecca about the “wonderful” treasure hunt his wife set up... (full context)
40. Amy Elliott Dunne, Nine Days Gone (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
The morning after the excursion to the lake with Jeff, Amy wakes up feeling nervous. She knows she needs to get out of the Ozarks. She... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Amy returns to her cabin to find Dorothy waiting for her—she is two days behind on... (full context)
Misogyny Theme Icon
Amy reluctantly lets Greta and Jeff in—they begin going through her things under the pretense of... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Greta and Jeff scurry out of the apartment, almost tenderly warning Amy to be more careful at the next place she stops and reassuring her she’ll be... (full context)
41. Nick Dunne, Nine Days Gone
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and tell it himself. Though Nick can’t use the interview to say anything bad about Amy, strengthening his public image—and then going to the cops with the Amy-framed-Nick theory—will perhaps be... (full context)
42. Amy Elliott Dunne, Nine Days Gone (2)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy is penniless and on the run. She spends the night in her car in a... (full context)
44. Amy Elliott Dunne, Ten Days Gone (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy makes a phone call and arranges a mysterious meeting for later that evening. She spends... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy has called her “devoted Desi” to her aid. They have never quite lost touch, and... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Desi is full of rage towards Nick, and agrees to keep Amy hidden from him. Desi reveals that Nick came to talk to him several days ago,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Desi tells Amy he’ll do whatever he can to shield her from the world—he’ll even flee the country... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
On the way out of the casino, Amy and Desi pass by a TV—on it, Andie, “the slut,” is holding a press conference.... (full context)
45. Nick Dunne, Ten Days Gone (2)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...interview. Nick answers her questions well—he admits he’s not quite as prodigious a liar as Amy, but is “not bad when [he has] to be.” He prostrates himself for Sharon and... (full context)
46. Amy Elliott Dunne, Ten Days Gone (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Amy and Desi arrive at his grandiose, secluded lake house, and Desi gives Amy the grand... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As the piece de resistance, Desi shows Amy to an elaborate greenhouse—which he has had filled with tulips, Amy’s favorite flower. Amy admits... (full context)
47. Nick Dunne, Ten Days Gone (3)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...within its pages are going to “ruin” him. The diary contains allegations that Nick poisoned Amy with antifreeze, pushed her around, and committed sexual acts which bordered on rape. When Boney... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Boney points out that it would have taken six months or a year for Amy to set all this up—to do so, she’d have to be “crazy.” Nick insists that... (full context)
48. Amy Elliott Dunne, Eleven Days Gone
Misogyny Theme Icon
Amy settles in to watch Nick’s Sharon Schieber interview. She wishes she could watch it alone,... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy watches the interview, rapt and focused. She realizes that Nick is wearing a tie she... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
After the interview is over, Amy admits to herself that she wants to go back to her old life. She begins... (full context)
49. Nick Dunne, Fourteen Days Gone
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...spends the rest of the day imagining all the different ways in which he’d kill Amy if he could. He becomes lost in a spiral of rage directed at all the... (full context)
Misogyny Theme Icon
...he does not want to be the kind of man who hates women—he only hates Amy, and if he can find a way to focus that rage, maybe he can stop... (full context)
50. Amy Elliott Dunne, Twenty-Six Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy is growing tired and wary of Desi, who is constantly trying to remind her how... (full context)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Desi comes daily to bring Amy lunch—small portions of fruit and seafood designed to force her to lose the weight she’s... (full context)
51. Nick Dunne, Thirty-Three Days Gone
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...in the investigation but didn’t think anything of it—recent tests, however, have found traces of Amy’s blood on it. Boney officially places Nick under arrest for the murder of his wife. (full context)
52. Amy Elliott Dunne, Forty Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Amy has begun a “project.” Using old twine and an empty wine bottle, she prepares for... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Desperate to get the act over with, Amy pushes herself on Desi, seducing him and begging him to take her to the bedroom.... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Once Desi finishes, Amy insists he stay in bed while she fixes them a post-coital drink. She returns to... (full context)
53. Nick Dunne, Forty Days Gone
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...their case against “Nick Dunne, Killer.” Tanner’s team of detectives has been unable to track Amy down, and though Nick has made several videos begging for Amy’s return and posted them... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
The doorbell rings, and Nick answers it—Amy is standing on the doorstep in a thin pink dress. There is twine dangling from... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Once the door is shut, Amy looks at Nick with a “triumphant smile.” She proudly announces that she has made it... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick bluntly accuses Amy of framing him for murder. She promises she can explain everything, and Nick says he’d... (full context)
54. Amy Elliott Dunne, The Night of the Return (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy presents the medical examiners with the evidence of her body—a “textbook” example of a rape... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Boney asks Amy if she’s able to come to the station for an interview, and Amy—determined to maintain... (full context)
55. Nick Dunne, The Night of the Return (1)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...a “holiday party gone awry.” People are drinking champagne and discussing the harrowing details of Amy’s ordeal, discussing how she escaped from Desi’s clutches by slashing his throat with a steak... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...little bitch” who killed her son is. She tells anyone who will listen—the press included—that Amy murdered Desi in cold blood, and is lying about her entire story. No one heeds... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
The media follows Amy and Nick through streets like a “royal wedding procession” as they drive back to their... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick pulls himself back, telling Amy that he can’t be with someone who has killed a man. Amy tries to calm... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
After making sure that Nick isn’t wearing a wire, Amy strips herself and leads Nick into the shower, where she whispers her entire story into... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
After Amy goes to sleep, Nick calls Tanner and desperately relays the details of Amy’s deception—and the... (full context)
56. Amy Elliott Dunne, The Night of the Return (2)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy stands at the foot of the stairs after listening into Nick’s phone call, desperate to... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy threatens Nick with violence and retribution if he ever tries to divorce her—and tells him... (full context)
57. Nick Dunne, The Night of the Return (2)
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
With his hands around Amy’s throat, Nick wonders who he would be if he killed her—who he would be without... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
At the same time, Nick knows that just as Amy made him into his best self, he made her into her worst self. He demanded... (full context)
58. Amy Elliott Dunne, Five Days After the Return
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy is realizing that she needs to be more careful about her husband—Nick is not as... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Each day since her return, Amy has entertained visits from her parents. They lavish her with careful attention, treating her like... (full context)
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
As the investigation winds down, Amazing Amy sales pick up—Rand and Marybeth have secured a book deal for a new entry in... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Amy knows that Nick hasn’t fallen back in love with her yet—but has faith that he... (full context)
59. Nick Dunne, Thirty Days After the Return
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Amy, Nick writes, “thinks she’s in control, but she’s very wrong.” Boney, Go, and Nick are... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Boney remains convinced that at some point, Amy will crack. Go suggests looking through Amy’s diary with a fine-toothed comb, but Boney knows... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
...Nick he should move out—she doesn’t want him living with a murderer. Nick says that Amy will “never really let [him] go”—she likes “the game” too much. Go advises Nick to... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Sometimes Nick finds himself letting his guard down and actually enjoying his time with Amy—they playact at love and intimacy, but Nick is waiting for the moment when the tables... (full context)
60. Amy Elliott Dunne, Eight Weeks After the Return
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy feels safe—no one has arrested her, and all the questioning has stopped. Though she knows... (full context)
61. Nick Dunne, Nine Weeks After the Return
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Nick has found Amy’s vomit—in the back of a freezer in a jar, inside a box of Brussels sprouts.... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...and Boney and Go still meet up to try and find ways to take down Amy, but are unable to find a single thing suspicious about her diary. Only Boney and... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...death. After the funeral, Nick doesn’t cling to Go for comfort—rather, he goes home with Amy, and lets her hold him that night. All the while, he thinks about how he... (full context)
62. Amy Elliott Dunne, Ten Weeks After the Return
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Though Nick is “pretend[ing]” to be happy with Amy—and she is pretending right back—she hears him writing late at night on the computer. She... (full context)
63. Nick Dunne, Twenty Weeks After the Return
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Nick lives with Amy, pretending nothing is wrong, while he finishes his manuscript. He titles it Psycho Bitch, and... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy tells Nick that she needs him to do some things “for [her] security.” She demands... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
...a little excited, but instead she is furious, and accuses Nick of being “addicted” to Amy. Go predicts that Nick and Amy won’t make it eighteen years—one of them will kill... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
...spite of the madness of the situation, Nick feels he is “finally a match for Amy.” He can feel her changing him—he was a boy, then a “man, good and bad,”... (full context)
64. Amy Elliott Dunne, Ten Months, Two Weeks, Six Days After the Return
Marriage Theme Icon
Amy wonders about the nature of unconditional love. She was raised to believe that love should... (full context)
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy’s baby is due tomorrow—ironically, the same date as her and Nick’s sixth anniversary. The theme... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Over the last several months, Nick has spent all his free time doting on Amy—rubbing her belly with lotion, running out to buy her pickles, and so on. Amy believes... (full context)
Secrets and Lies Theme Icon
Marriage Theme Icon
Misogyny Theme Icon
Writing, Storytelling, and Narrative Theme Icon
Amy says that earlier this morning, Nick was stroking her hair and asking her if she... (full context)