Sharp Objects
Gillian Flynn
Contributed by Marshall Raine
Chapter 15

Camille goes to her mother’s mansion to find Amma laughing loudly with her friends. She feels annoyed and goes straight to her room to take a bath. She shuts her eyes under the bath water and finds Adora staring at her when she reopens her eyes. Camille asks what’s been bothering Amma but Adora deflects her inquisitiveness by asking whether she is cold. “She had a glass of bluish milk in her hand, which she gave to me silently. Either the drink makes me sick and I know I’m not insane, or it doesn’t, and I know I’m a hateful creature. I drank the milk as my mother hummed and ran her tongue over her lower lip, a gesture so fervent it was nearly obscene." After several minutes she starts throwing up.

Camille leaves her mother’s house and goes to the hospital near Wind Gap, despite throwing up several times on her way. When she arrives, she requests the hospital to give her the medical file of her sister, Marian. The hospital has a file for each year of Marian's life. Despite many tests, diagnoses, and scans, the physicians never found anything wrong with Marian. She finds a comment from a nurse who used to treat Marian, saying that Marian was never sick, instead, Adora, her mother was causing the sickness. The comment reads:

I am a nurse who has attended Marian Crellin for her tests this week, as well as several previous in-patient stays. I am of the very strong ["very strong" underlined twice] opinion that this child is not sick at all. I believe were it not for her Mother; she would be perfectly healthy. The child exhibits sign of illness after spending time alone with the Mother, even on days when she has felt well up until maternal visits.

The nurse’s note also mentions that Marian’s mother did not appear interested in her when she was okay. She only cared for her when she felt sick. Camille decides to track down the nurse who wrote the comments. The nurse explains that Marian’s mother had an illness called Munchausen by Proxy or MBP.  The illness usually involves a guardian who makes their child sick in order to feel helpful and get attention. The nurse explains that she tried talking to the physician who treated Marian, but he did not believe it. She also wanted Amma to be taken out of her mother's house because she was in danger of the same misfortune. Camille also learns that the detective was looking at the files of Marian. She leaves to call Frank by payphone.

Camille informs her boss that she now knows the killer of the two girls and that she will handle it. She then finds the detective at a restaurant. She tells him that her mother murdered her sister and she thinks that she also killed Natalie and Ann. Camille knows that the detective also suspected Adora too. Camille is upset. The detective takes her to the bluffs. He tells her that he was interested in her because of her relation with Adora, but he later genuinely fell for her. The detective informs Camille that he will search their home for evidence the following day, but emphasizes that she should act normal as if nothing has happened.

Camille goes back home for dinner and for the first time, Adora invites her to the bedroom. The reader learns that for many months after the death of Marian, when Adora stayed in her room and refused to open the door for anyone, Camille would imagine herself curled with Adora in bed. Now here she was, many years late. Adora gives Camille a drink that has an apple smell and then reveals to her how her mother, Joya, left her in the woods to die when she was young. Camille takes the drink, even though she knows it is poisoned.


In this chapter, Camille finally put together all the pieces of information she has been collecting throughout her stay in Wind Gap. She realizes that the pills her mother has been giving her and Amma are making them sick. She also thinks that her mother did the same thing to Marian and to confirm this, she visits the hospital. The fact that her sister was never diagnosed with any illness reinforces her speculation that Adora killed her. She calls Frank to inform him of this new development. Camille has suspected this for a long time, but she now knows it for sure. She also knows that the detective had the same speculations. The detective admits this and tells her that he was only interested in her because she was close of Adora. However, he admits to loving her. This is undoubtedly the first time someone claims to love Camille. The chapter reveals the extent of Adora’s mental instability. No one in their right mind would kill their own flesh and blood. Knowing that her mother will be apprehended the following day, Camille drinks her poisoned drink. This way, Camille submits to her mother which demonstrates love and affection towards her. It may seem strange, but it’s the only way Adora can understand.

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