Customer Reviews for

The Lovely Bones

Average Rating 4
( 4205 )
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(2104)

4 Star

(1126)

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(559)

2 Star

(246)

1 Star

(170)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

38 out of 46 people found this review helpful.

The Lovely Bones is a gripping and wonderfully played out novel.

When I first picked up The Lovely Bones I had a feeling it was a book I was going to like, there was so much hype about it and it seemed like it was becoming a modern day classic. As I began to read it more and more, not only did I like it, but I began to be so attached...
When I first picked up The Lovely Bones I had a feeling it was a book I was going to like, there was so much hype about it and it seemed like it was becoming a modern day classic. As I began to read it more and more, not only did I like it, but I began to be so attached to the story and especially the characters, which the author ,Alice Sebold, writes about in great detail. The story is about a 13 year old girl named Susie Salmon who has a normal, but nice life. Her life is soon put to an end though once she is murdered by one of her neighbors. She than goes off to heaven and looks down on her murderer and on her coping family. Alice Sebold has made an imaginative story which has a wonderfully set up plot that features suspense, romance, some mystery, tragedy, and hope. The Lovely Bones is a book that I think everybody of all ages and gender should read.

posted by Corey_P on January 5, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

18 out of 29 people found this review helpful.

Slightly Disappointing

I decided to pick up this book randomly when having the desire for a new read, a fresh one. A lot of my friends have read it and told me it was great, and its got a lot of hype (and is now apparently a movie) so I decided, why not?
The story itself is interesting.. it...
I decided to pick up this book randomly when having the desire for a new read, a fresh one. A lot of my friends have read it and told me it was great, and its got a lot of hype (and is now apparently a movie) so I decided, why not?
The story itself is interesting.. it kept me reading. Sadly there isn't really a climax because, in a way, there isn't really an ending... at least not a satisfying one. I thought the concept of the story was original (kind of) that the story was being told by a dead 14 year-old from her heaven. The events that take place keep you reading.. until a certain point. The book kind of comes to a stop and then slowly takes you to the end... and then a couple weird things happen, at which point before finishing the book you realize nothing is REALLY going to happen.
But that wasn't really the thing that disappointed me. It was the fact that I felt I already knew the message and the "ending" of this story before I even read it. The "realistic" ending and perspective of this terrible situation, which didn't seem very satisfying to me. Though the message, I would say, is nice and can offer someone something to take away from it, that wasn't the case for me. I feel that this book would be an eye opener for someone much younger than me. At the age of 20, I have read too many novels, seen to many movies, and have gone through enough pain in my life to take away any valuable or inspiring message from this book. It's message was nice, like I said, but didn't do much for me and left me disappointed. Plus Alice's writing style kind of jumped around and could become confusing for some.
So, overall, I would recommend this book to a 14-18 year old with good reading skills and is mature enough to read some slightly graphic material. Anyone older than that I don't think will get anything out of it or be moved by its message. The book is good, but just wasn't inspiring to me.

posted by 1826394 on August 27, 2009

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  • Posted January 5, 2010

    The Lovely Bones is a gripping and wonderfully played out novel.

    When I first picked up The Lovely Bones I had a feeling it was a book I was going to like, there was so much hype about it and it seemed like it was becoming a modern day classic. As I began to read it more and more, not only did I like it, but I began to be so attached to the story and especially the characters, which the author ,Alice Sebold, writes about in great detail. The story is about a 13 year old girl named Susie Salmon who has a normal, but nice life. Her life is soon put to an end though once she is murdered by one of her neighbors. She than goes off to heaven and looks down on her murderer and on her coping family. Alice Sebold has made an imaginative story which has a wonderfully set up plot that features suspense, romance, some mystery, tragedy, and hope. The Lovely Bones is a book that I think everybody of all ages and gender should read.

    38 out of 46 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 11, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Truly Amazing

    I'm 13 years old but read at a very high reading level. This book, to me, was absolutely amazing. I will never forget it. The plot was amazing, the story line great. The emotion Alice Sebold puts into the book is literal, yet touching. A girl murdered tells the story of her life, then watches her family grow, have problems, and become better people from heaven. She watches the murderer of herself cover up his path. She watches her sister grow up. It's all very heartbreaking, yet very amazing. Truly a must-read.

    24 out of 27 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 27, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Very good book. I decided to read this book last year and I was

    Very good book. I decided to read this book last year and I was not disappointed. It was better than the movie

    20 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2009

    Slightly Disappointing

    I decided to pick up this book randomly when having the desire for a new read, a fresh one. A lot of my friends have read it and told me it was great, and its got a lot of hype (and is now apparently a movie) so I decided, why not?
    The story itself is interesting.. it kept me reading. Sadly there isn't really a climax because, in a way, there isn't really an ending... at least not a satisfying one. I thought the concept of the story was original (kind of) that the story was being told by a dead 14 year-old from her heaven. The events that take place keep you reading.. until a certain point. The book kind of comes to a stop and then slowly takes you to the end... and then a couple weird things happen, at which point before finishing the book you realize nothing is REALLY going to happen.
    But that wasn't really the thing that disappointed me. It was the fact that I felt I already knew the message and the "ending" of this story before I even read it. The "realistic" ending and perspective of this terrible situation, which didn't seem very satisfying to me. Though the message, I would say, is nice and can offer someone something to take away from it, that wasn't the case for me. I feel that this book would be an eye opener for someone much younger than me. At the age of 20, I have read too many novels, seen to many movies, and have gone through enough pain in my life to take away any valuable or inspiring message from this book. It's message was nice, like I said, but didn't do much for me and left me disappointed. Plus Alice's writing style kind of jumped around and could become confusing for some.
    So, overall, I would recommend this book to a 14-18 year old with good reading skills and is mature enough to read some slightly graphic material. Anyone older than that I don't think will get anything out of it or be moved by its message. The book is good, but just wasn't inspiring to me.

    18 out of 29 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 28, 2009

    Lovely book!

    Although I have read this book some time ago, it left me and still leaves me not sad but very thoughtful of life, love, and wondering so many things at once that I was just plain speechless....in a good way. I immediately had to recommend this to my friends. It is hard to describe. A very surprising read for me. It is probably one of the best books I have ever read, and this is not usually my normal genre of reading.

    13 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 14, 2010

    Don't waste your time

    This book was a HUGE disappointment and waste of time. I kept thinking it was going to get better. It had to get better so I read it to the end. Sorry to say I was extremely disappointed. The writer is kind of boring. It goes on and on. You're expecting a murder mystery to be solved and then when you get to the end, you say "That's how it ends?". Don't waste your time reading it.

    12 out of 45 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 23, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    LOVELY BONES

    At first this book is very unsettling. Having young children myself the heinous murder of a child-I am not giving anything away here- affected me deeply. The story reaffirms the fragile nature of life and the enormous consequences a loss of life has on family and friends. What started as a tragic tale transformed into one of love and redemption sweetly told by the victim, Susie Salmon. The book was not perfect.There were a couple of sequences near the end that seemed unnecessary or too contrived-I would be giving too much away here to expound. I gave it 5 stars because the book was unusual, thought provoking and it captured my interest from beginning to end. Read it. And love your children.

    11 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 3, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Gruesome or heartwarming?

    THE LOVELY BONES was given to me to read. It would not have been my choice of reading material but somehow this gruesome, horrible thing that happened to Susie, the narrator speaking from HEAVEN, turned out to be one of the most heartwarming books I've ever read! WELL WORTH YOUR TIME!

    Other books that left me with a warm heart are THE SHACK, EXPLOSION IN PARIS, THE GUERNSEY LITERARY and POTATO PEEL PIE SOCIETY....

    10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2010

    Not a murder mystery!

    The end of this book is very disappointing and feels a little rushed meanwhile was very slow throughout. It is supposed to make you value life/those around you, but leaves you hanging. You don't get closure with her murder and neither does her family.

    9 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2008

    Haunting yet Satisfying Story

    The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold is hands down the best book I have ever read. Sebold thrills us with a depressing book of a little girl named Susie who is raped and murdered. She pulls on our emotions by separating the girl from her family by placing her in heaven only to contact them through the family¿s sad memories. The book harnesses our curiosity through the pursuit that slowly fades to find the twisted murder Mr. Harvey, a neighbor. It is prominent throughout the story that Sebold wants us to understand the steps of grieving. She shows how grieving families are ripped apart because they handle the death in their own individual ways. The mother and father grow farther apart as the father locks himself away in his own thoughts and memories. The mother longs for comfort and the necessity to extinguish her feeling of cold loneliness by convening feelings for the detective on the case. Her brother slowly grows into a boy plagued by anger for his mother upon her abandonment of her family. Her sister shuts herself off from her family and the world in a deep mourning for Susie. Though, she slowly comes to terms when she gains a steady loving boyfriend. Susie grows jealous from heaven enduring the fact that she can¿t solidify her feelings for a boy like her sister on earth. She is harnessed by the feelings she has for a boy named Ray who on earth she was becoming close to. He is deeply sorrowed and flashes back to their memories made in the short time after their first kiss. He becomes great friends with an outcast girl, Ruth who admired Susie and can feel and become in touch with spirits. Over the eight years in which the novel takes place Susie brings us deeply in touch with the members of her family and each of their steps in grieving. She is connected to earth because she cannot understand her own death. This is mainly in part of comprehending what is happening to those she loves but being unable to let go herself. Susie refers to the penguin snow globe in a way that we start to believe she is getting at a perfect world. I feel she is trying to open our eyes to search for perfection in the novel among the overwhelming grief. Sebold fascinates us with perfection by making us search in depth for it throughout the rest of the book, a perfection almost that could be thought to be exemplified in the Climax and end of the story.(to be seen upon reading the book) I am also deeply fascinated with the interlude in the book called Snapshots. Sebold captures our curiosity of the rolls and rolls of undeveloped pictures under Susie¿s bed. I feel she wants us to believe that the pictures are the memories of people¿s lives on earth that Susie has left behind. She wants us to better understand the choices people made from the pictures. The book can be described as a Supernatural thriller mostly in the part I will leave you hanging on. As Ruth and Ray become older and Susie longs for Ray because of her want to make love with him an extraordinary happening unfolds. While Ray and Ruth visit home they go to the sinkhole where Susie¿s body unfound sits in a safe at the bottom. After years of running Mr. Harvey is back in town and passes by the area only to connect eyes with Ruth while passing by. Susie feels an overwhelming tug to earth as Ruth blacks out on the ground connecting with heaven. Some supernatural occurrences take place leaving Susie with an inconceivable path towards acceptance and settlement.

    9 out of 12 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Where's the Climax??

    This story was able to captivate my attention in the beginning with its inventive and unique plot-line, however, as the story continued, it left a lot to be desired. With the death of Mr.Harvey by way of an icicle...obviously that left me confused and craving for a more justified conclusion. The only thing that capitivated me to keep reading was the reactions of Susie's mother, Abigail. The fact that she could leave her family and treat them as a burden, as well as Susie's death, left me enthralled. I did not believe her reaction and found the impossibility of it rather curious, though not enough to have me be fulfilled with the end of the story. Because Mr.Harvey was never caught and the continuance of his story seemed exceedingly pointless and aggrivating. I felt no rise in the story, no exciting point that cooled over; it was a constant drull that seemed to be waiting to end...

    7 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 6, 2012

    INSANELY GOOD BOOK!!!!!!!!!!

    Hey, you teenagers and young adults! You should definitely read this book because of the attracting plot, realistic characters/situations, and realistic themes. If any of you have watched the movie, read a summary, or heard anything from those who have read this book, you might know that this book starts off with a graphically described rape and murder. Once I read the first chapter, my heart became attached to the next chapters, just to see how heaven is like and how the dead attach to the living, especially the murderer. The intricate details, themes, and individual stories of each character are absolutely amazing. Everything was so realistic that I had a hard time accepting the fact that this book is fiction. Even though some people may not believe in heaven, this book may change their minds. The Lovely Bones is strong and captivating in so many ways that I consider this as one of my favorite books of all time. The themes are family issues, friendship, haunting, love, and a little dab of suspense. Even though I didn't experience many family problems prior to reading this book, I do admit that that has changed. Because the book is told in first-person narration, I got to experience first-hand how Susie Salmon feels about the tragic splits within her family. Friendship also gets a spotlight. Susie Salmon dies when she is only 14 years old, but from heaven, she watches everyone grow older, from her murderer, to her friends/first love, to her siblings. In the book, the reader gets to see eight continuous years after Susie's death, which is enough time for her younger sister and friends, Ray and Ruth, to graduate from college. After reading this book, I thought, "WOW". Get this book the next time you go shopping!

    6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 6, 2012

    AN AMAZING NOVEL THAT WILL BLOW YOUR MIND!!! :)

    The Lovely Bones is a must read for all high school students and young adults. It truly deserved to be named the number one bestseller of 2002 because Alice Sebold, the author, developed the characters realistically, used an interesting point of view, and created a captivating plot that even attracted me, a non-reader. This novel was a touching story about a fourteen-year-old girl named Susie Salmon who was raped and murdered on her way home from school. It was partly a detective story and partly a family drama with morals that could teach young adults a little something about life. I found it so unique that Susie, herself, narrated her story from up in heaven as she watched her family cope with her death and her killer and neighbor, Mr. Harvey, use lies to get away with her murder. I mean, in what other book would a dead person be telling their story from heaven?

    Each of the characters were developed realistically. I got to know all of them in depth because I could relate to them so easily. Susie was raped and murdered by her neighbor, and so this book also taught me about that you can't trust everyone. Alice Sebold's poetic writing style truly enhanced the story. She used metaphors, like that in the prologue, where Susie talked about the penguin in her father's snowglobe and how it, now like her, was trapped in a perfect world. Throughout the story, Susie watched her family, her friends, her loved ones, and her killer as their lovely bones grew up and lived life without her. I have to warn you, though, that there are some inappropriate scenes in the story that may not appeal to all readers.

    Without any hesitation would I recommend this book to young adults and mature audiences. The way that Sebold described each of the characters realistically and set you up in a front row seat with Susie truly enhanced the story. This novel is amazing and it touched my heart and if you read it, it will not disappoint you.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2010

    A title that makes no sense and a boring read.

    The book never went anywhere. She was killed. She went to heaven and that was it. The book should be called, 'Alice's Version of Heaven'. I was only barely able to finish it because I was waiting for something to happen.

    4 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2010

    Torture to read

    Before reading The Lovely Bones, I had been told by two people what a great book it is and that they both considered it one of the best books they've ever read. This got me really intrigued and I couldn't wait to read it. I was so disappointed when I discovered how boring this book is. I still have about 25 pages left to go, and I'm only reading it so that I can say I finished it. It feels like torture every time I pick the book up and start to read. Maybe it's just me, but I can't stand the way this author writes. There is no suspense or page-turning quality to the story whatsoever, and it feels like as she tells the story she spends a great deal of her time merely rambling about irrelevant details. Oftentimes, I find myself wondering why she is now talking about this or that, and if she will ever get on with the "meat" of the story. She also has a very vague, sometimes confusing writing style, and I find myself having to reread or ponder what she has written because it doesn't seem to make sense. I feel like as I'm reading, I'm pushing a heavy sled uphill, anticipating the top but wondering if I'll ever get there. It's painful and tiring, and I can't wait to be done! Don't waste your money on this book; if you insist on reading it, check it out at the library.

    4 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 13, 2010

    Amazing

    I truely loved this book! It was a sad story, the entire time you can feel the families pain of losing their daughter and never get justice. What makes this book different is that it is told by the main character has she views her on her family in heaven. The entire time you wonder if the killer is ever brought to justice and it upsetting that he does not. Easy read, I could not put the book down!!!

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I couldn't put it down.

    Beautifully written, sometimes disturbing, touching, a book you couldn't put down once you read the first sentence. I really hope the movie captures the true essence of the book.

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 25, 2011

    Terribly INSPIRING story

    Saw the movie really liked it but the book is so much more .....

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 18, 2011

    Awesome,loved it!!!!!

    I LOVE this book. I couldent put it down.It is a quick read its better than the movie,and i loved the movie too.If you want a good book to read than this is it!!!!!!!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 15, 2011

    So great!

    Excellent book. Quick read since I couldn't put it down.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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