The Lovely Bones

 
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4.1 (23)
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The Lovely Bones
Author(s)
Age Range
14+
Release Date
July 03, 2002
ISBN
0316168815
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When we first meet 14-year-old Susie Salmon, she is already in heaven. This was before milk carton photos and public service announcements, she tells us; back in 1973, when Susie mysteriously disappeared, people still believed these things didn't happen. In the sweet, untroubled voice of a precocious teenage girl, Susie relates the awful events of her death and her own adjustment to the strange new place she finds herself. It looks a lot like her school playground, with the good kind of swing sets. With love, longing, and a growing understanding, Susie watches her family as they cope with their grief, her father embarks on a search for the killer, her sister undertakes a feat of amazing daring, her little brother builds a fort in her honor and begin the difficult process of healing. In the hands of a brilliant novelist, this story of seemingly unbearable tragedy is transformed into a suspenseful and touching story about family, memory, love, heaven, and living.

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23 reviews
 
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Overall rating
 
4.1
Plot
 
4.2(23)
Characters
 
4.0(1)
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4.0(1)
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Heartbreaking
Overall rating
 
4.3
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
4.0
Writing Style
 
4.0
A story of a child murder and rape narrated by the victim, Susie Salmon, a 14 year old girl, from her heaven. What a great book. Alice Seibold's writing got me hooked within the first pages.I love the way the author describes such an horrifying story without being overwrought. A coming of age story of one's journey through life and death. Heartbreaking and touching story about family bonds, memory, and love.
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A Suspenseful Book
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4.0
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4.0
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Reader reviewed by Jess

In "The Lovely Bones", by Alice Sebold is about the after life of Susie Salmon and how she watches over her family and others. Susie, who was thirteen, had been murdered by her neighbor, Mr. Harvey. Now, Susie felt as if it was her job to guide her family to the clues that would solve the mystery of her death. Susie has to help while she watches her family struggle to cope with their loss. She also follows the lives of her friends from school and even her own murderer. This book is full of suspenseful moments that leave you on the edge of your seat wondering what will happen next. As years go by with Susie watching from Heaven, they all learn things about themselves, including Susie. This book was sometimes confusing, because there are so many characters. Overall, I found it to be a great book with a lot of detail a dialouge. The book is by far better than the movie, so I recommend reading it before seeing the movie.
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verrry good :)
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
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Reader reviewed by hey there

The Lovely Bones is a book of a girls passion for life while she herself is dead and I thought it was amazing. To know what a dead person is thinking and experiencing is genius. No one really knows what happens before and after a murder and I liked that we knew in this book right away. I thought all the characters were very real and descriptive. Susie was my favorite character. She was different and bright, although I did not like the fact that she was stupid enough to let her curiosity get the better of her even when the warning bells went off in her head. I also liked the fact that Susie didnt completely dismiss her old life while in heaven. She watched life progress without her. Some may say thats bad since shes not moving on but I think that was her way of moving on. Watching and accepting life as she knew it helped her grow and understand the world she left. I thought the book was very good and I highly recommend it.

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Lovely Bones
Overall rating
 
4.0
Plot
 
4.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Adrienne

Wow, this book started off very intensely! I couldn't
put it down, but once I got past the aftershock of her murder, the
story kind of became a little boring. I really liked it, but it was a
little too sad to read about. One things for sure Alice Sebold can
really tell a powerful story of a teenage girl who is raped then
murdered by a male neighbor. I was surprised that only the first 4 or 5
chapters was about Susie's murder, then the rest was about her "life"
in heaven and how her family deals with her death. I really liked
Susie's sister, Lindsay. She was a very strong female character, and I
love how her life turns out with her childhood crush then husband.
Also, it was perfect ending with Mr. Harvey (the murderer, ex-neighbor)
dying by an icicle (the perfect murder). It was really interesting how
connected Susie was to her school friend Ruth and how Susie actually
went into her body and made love to her I guess boyfriend. This book
will have me thinking and I won't forget her tragic story. I highly
recommend it, and I give it 4 stars only because it was a little boring.


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The healing process of death
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4.0
Plot
 
4.0
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Reader reviewed by Krista

Susie Salmon (like the fish) was a fourteen-year-old girl who was brutally raped and murdered in 1973. The killer was her neighbor, the odd Mr. Harvey. Susie watches her loved ones mourn from her view in Heaven, while she tries to find solace herself.

Initially, The Lovely Bones sounds like a grim novel, and for the beginning of novel, it is. This is when the events immediately before and after the murder are described. As the novel progresses, readers learn that The Lovely Bones is not meant to be dark. Instead, it shows the healing process of death.

Susie has a voice beyond her age. While dead at fourteen, she only grew wiser in Heaven, and I loved this. However, sometimes, I think Sebold when a little too far. Some sentences were confusing, while others were plain corny. They were unneccessary and cluttered the book. Another thing I disliked was the end. It felt unbelievable and rushed.

While The Lovely Bones has small flaws, I do believe this is a book worth reading. It was powerful and successfully tackled the topic of coping with death. It was a smart choice to choose Susie as the narrator. I loved seeing her come to terms with her death while in Heaven. This is the first book Ive read that has shown the coping of ones own death, although Im sure there are more out there. Anyway, I definitely recommend you read The Lovely Bones if you have not already.
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beyond amazing
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
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Reader reviewed by Sara E.

Absolutely by far one of my favorite books ever. Alice Sebold has such an amazing mind and her writing style is so unique. Despite the dark nature of this book, it really wasn't always all that depressing while reading it. In the beginning of the book you meet Susie Salmon, a young 14 year old girl, who is dead. She was raped and murdered by a man in her neighborhood, after which, she goes to "heaven". Susie's heaven isn't filled with her family members who have died, but other people she's never met. One of my favorite things is that her heaven smells of skunk. Most of the book isn't really about Susie though, it's about her family and friends, as she watches them live their life without her.
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best book ever written
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
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0.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Hillary Krajewski

Susie Salmon was raped and murdered by her neighbor. She is now up in heaven watching all the people she knew. Her father, who is determined to find her killer. Her mother, who can't handle it as well as she should. Her sister, who keeps it to herself. Her brother, who doesn't really know what's happening. Ray, who had a crush on her while she had returned his affections. Ruth, who wanted to know what happened to her as well. The neighbors and classmates who can't believe something like that could happen where they live. And finally, Mr. Harvey, the one who murdered her. As her family and friends try to cope with the awful situation, Susie watches them.

I really enjoyed this book. It was exciting form the beginning and was so sad. It is such an amazing book, even if it is pretty old. I loved it. I would really recommend it for ANYONE to read.
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It's The Cat's Meow!
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
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0.0
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0.0
Reader reviewed by Kelsey

In 1973, a 14-year-old girl named Susie Salmon is raped, murdered, and dismembered by a neighbor. Over the next few years she watches from a personalized heaven as her family and friends deal with their grief.



This is one of the most excellent novels I have read in a long time. The writing is really just incredible. The characters are very real. From the time of Susie Salmon's murder the wonderful novel progresses about 13 years. Sebold details of the pain that goes through each member of her family and friends in Susie's point of view. It's incredible how even though through the whole novel the narration stays with Susie, you still know what the others thoughts are.

Ms. Sebold has created a beautiful and dreadful story. Most of this novel just makes you want to cry and it makes you want to kill yourself because you feel like you can never really deal with what the characters in this tale. That's the dreadful part.

The beautiful part is the characters descriptions and the beauty of going through the lives through about 13 years and just knowing how much they have grown up from that terrible day in December of 1973. The ending was a beauty, too. I could not have made or described a better way to put it. Sebold leaves nothing out that makes you question, "What next?" But that does not mean that you will ever forget this beautifully crafted piece of work.

Being on The New York Times best seller list for over a year and having people trying to get the film rights for this novel before Sebold was even done, is an amazing achievement. I just want to say that I wish I would create a novel almost nearly this good once in my life...

...and I bet her other works are also amazing.
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Disturbing
Overall rating
 
3.0
Plot
 
3.0
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Reader reviewed by Jo

I really enjoyed this book, and I couldn't put it down once I picked it up. It is about a young girl who is raped and murdered by her neighor. The first few chapters are very hard to get through, but, then the story becomes about how her family changes and tries to heal in the aftermath. It was interesting to see how many people in the community were also changed by this horrific crime, and how they were brought together in an effort to heal themselves. It is a wonderful story of love and hope. A great book!...FOR ADULTS OR HIGH SCHOOL AGED CHILDREN!!
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In search of a killer
Overall rating
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
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Reader reviewed by Mindy

This is a book that will first keep you up at night because you want to keep reading and second because once you read it you are haunted by the characters.

Sebold does a phenomenal job off drawing us in. I raced to find out whether Susie's family was ever going to recover and hoping that her killer would be caught!

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