If I were to describe this book in one word, that word would be disturbing. Very, very disturbing.
I have no doubt that Sebold meant for The Lovely Bones to be a ground-breaking, inspiring, thought-provoking novel, but sadly, everything was so jumbled that I couldn’t understand it.
First of all, there was no plot. It felt like Sebold kind of just made up everything as she went, so naturally everything was all over the place. Nothing really drives the story, Susie just dies and watches over her family from heaven. The whole thing was just a situation in which the characters were put into.
Secondly, the characters. All of the characters were card-board cut outs. None of them seemed to have a motive of any sort, and what irked me the most, was how weak everyone was. Especially the women. Most of the girls and women in this book were either having sex, getting raped, crying, or smoking cigarettes. It was quite disgusting the number of times the word “rape” was mentioned in this book.
Third, the writing. There were a few minimal times, in which I actually thought the writing was beautiful, the way that Sebold described things. She had a nice and unique voice. And then there were times where I had no idea what the author was thinking by writing these quotes:
“The tears came like a small relentless army approaching the front lines of her eyes. She asked for coffee and toast in a restaurant and buttered it with her tears.”
“Her pupils dilated, pulsing in and out like small, ferocious olives.”
Several times during this book, Sebold would write a beautiful line at the end of a paragraph or a chapter, that would have a really deep meaning to it. Unfortunately, I could never understand what the author meant since the lines were written so vaguely and unclear.
Lastly, it was just plain boring. There would be several pages of long, monotonous descriptions, and come on! The only thing worse than a bad book, is a boring book.
All in all, if any of you are tempted to read this book… well, don’t. And if you disregard my advice, I ask you to at least stop within the first 20 pages. You will know what I mean after the first chapter.