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Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Book Review: The Lovely Bones

Book Review: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

On my recent trip to Morocco I had plenty of time to read my new Kindle by the pool and one of the books I managed to finish before heading home was Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones. Yep, ok, it was a little weird reading about a murdering paedophile while my friends were playing water polo in the sun, but the book was so moving and engrossing I could never put it down. 

The novel begins with narrator Susie Salmon, a 14 year old girl raped and murdered by her neighbour on her way home from school: 'My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973.' After her death she becomes trapped in the 'inbetween', watching the actions of her friends, family and murderer from an indiscernible place between Earth and Heaven. Despite its premise, the novel is far from a work of crime fiction and instead deals with one family's method of coping after the loss of a loved one, while also considering the possibilities of what happens after death. Trying to catch Susie's killer is just one of the many interwoven narratives that make up the novel and that's part of what I loved about it.

Sebold's prose is incredibly beautiful, using turns of phrase that flow smoothly and naturally. She blends drama, reality, fantasy and suspense in a way that even the most fantastical events seems plausible. There is one moment towards the end of the book, however, that I found a tad unbelievable (and bloody weird), but I was willing to overlook it for the sake of the rest of the novel. 
You might have already seen the film - as I had - but I think I prefer the novel. In my mind I could see Susie simultaneously hovering somewhere on the periphery between Earth and her inbetween, but this is a lot harder to convey in film and Peter Jackson's movie ended up looking like 'Susie's Great Big Acid Trip'. (Seriously though, what was with the disco dancing on a turntable?)

If you're looking for a new book to read then I'd highly recommend adding this one to your list. Have you read The Lovely Bones? Have you seen the film? What did you think?


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Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Book Review: The Lovely Bones

Book Review: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

On my recent trip to Morocco I had plenty of time to read my new Kindle by the pool and one of the books I managed to finish before heading home was Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones. Yep, ok, it was a little weird reading about a murdering paedophile while my friends were playing water polo in the sun, but the book was so moving and engrossing I could never put it down. 

The novel begins with narrator Susie Salmon, a 14 year old girl raped and murdered by her neighbour on her way home from school: 'My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973.' After her death she becomes trapped in the 'inbetween', watching the actions of her friends, family and murderer from an indiscernible place between Earth and Heaven. Despite its premise, the novel is far from a work of crime fiction and instead deals with one family's method of coping after the loss of a loved one, while also considering the possibilities of what happens after death. Trying to catch Susie's killer is just one of the many interwoven narratives that make up the novel and that's part of what I loved about it.

Sebold's prose is incredibly beautiful, using turns of phrase that flow smoothly and naturally. She blends drama, reality, fantasy and suspense in a way that even the most fantastical events seems plausible. There is one moment towards the end of the book, however, that I found a tad unbelievable (and bloody weird), but I was willing to overlook it for the sake of the rest of the novel. 
You might have already seen the film - as I had - but I think I prefer the novel. In my mind I could see Susie simultaneously hovering somewhere on the periphery between Earth and her inbetween, but this is a lot harder to convey in film and Peter Jackson's movie ended up looking like 'Susie's Great Big Acid Trip'. (Seriously though, what was with the disco dancing on a turntable?)

If you're looking for a new book to read then I'd highly recommend adding this one to your list. Have you read The Lovely Bones? Have you seen the film? What did you think?


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