Customer Reviews for

Virgin Suicides

Average Rating 4.5
( 282 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(169)

4 Star

(65)

3 Star

(25)

2 Star

(16)

1 Star

(7)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

The Teenage Girl Trough a Remarkably Perceptive Eye.

This novel's strength comes from an unsuspected place; the beautiful, and insightful prose of its narrators. From the eyes of teenage boys, unnoticed, but faithful to the girls we learn more about the psyche of teenage girls than almost any other novel I have read. Capt...
This novel's strength comes from an unsuspected place; the beautiful, and insightful prose of its narrators. From the eyes of teenage boys, unnoticed, but faithful to the girls we learn more about the psyche of teenage girls than almost any other novel I have read. Capturing the essence of suburban life in 70's America Eugenides's voice draws you into the haunting world of the Lisbon girls as they spiral down in depression, eventually ending in their mass suicide. Rather than depressing, this novel reads like a hazy dream, with moments of perceived clarity. Like the narrator we never quite understand the motivation intellectually, though you are left with the feeling that you understand why they did. That the world was too bothersome, their life too oppressing. It deals with the themes of sexuality, and freedom and confident applied to these girls. You are left astonished by this novel, wanting to close your own curtains to it as if you are the neighbor across the street who wants nothing more to do with the tragedy.
- Cara Schumann

posted by CaraAnn on April 28, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Depressing...

I say first, Eugenides is a great storyteller. Well written, draws you in, descriptive. But this is not a great story. These boys aren't realistic, holding hands, fretting about the neighbor girls, stealing their stuff (makeup? Shoes?) to idolize it. Weird boys worship...
I say first, Eugenides is a great storyteller. Well written, draws you in, descriptive. But this is not a great story. These boys aren't realistic, holding hands, fretting about the neighbor girls, stealing their stuff (makeup? Shoes?) to idolize it. Weird boys worshipping weirder girls for no apparent reason other than they have to to make the book go. Nothing gets resolved but luckily there wasnt a big mystery to begin with so i didnt care. I felt depressed by the end--i'm not looking for happy endings when i read, but also not looking for anticlimactic absence of caring. I'd read another book from him, but their stoylines seem like real downers too, so no thanks.

posted by 2117601 on November 14, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2014

    Amazing.

    Such a wonderful book! I couldn't put it down. I'd recommend this book to anyone, and I am definitely buying more from this author.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2008

    Very Good.

    I enjoyed the book. The beginning was hard to understand due to the narration - it took a bit to realize the style of narration and how the narration was set up. Overall, the story is really good and very haunting. I would recommend it to anyone.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2008

    What goes on next door...

    What do we really know about our neighbors? Watching the downward spiral of a middle-class suburban family, a group of teenage boys circa 1975 still ponder as adults just what went wrong in the Lisbon household. What caused the five adolescent Lisbon girls to end their lives? Read to the end and discover the more we know, the more we don't know. Compelling, haunting and darkly amusing as expected from Eugenides.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2007

    Pretty darn good

    One heck of a book, the novel and the film had an impact on the plot or strength of what it was all about to such a degree that I thought I would pop. Even though it is not clearly laid out and printed in words for you as to why the book ends as it does we all can interpret for ourselves why and I believe that we would all come up with the same answer.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2006

    Mixed Ideas

    It was such a deep book, very strongly written with an ocean of voice. Although throughout the book, I found all of it very disturbing, but also intriguing. While being pushed through the pages I felt myself as being one of the boys who was deeply in love with the Lisbon girls'. And at times, I even felt myself as being captured in the frail house that kept the girls' imprisoned. Which I may point out seemed to have 'left a bad taste in my mouth'. You never expect to hear or read about suicide, which is why this book was so surprising. While reading it, I have to admit, I was put in a state of depression (I told before I felt as if I was in the book) which is why I give this book 3, maybe 4 stars. Jeffrey's writing was the only thing that really kept me going... Don't get me wrong, it was a masterpiece to writing, it just wasn't one that put a smile on my face.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2005

    Shocking!

    I enjoyed this book to the very end. It gripped me from the very beginning. It's dark and in some ways morbid. The ending truly shocked me. You may think you know the ending, but in the end, you will be surprised.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2005

    Breathtaking!

    the virgin suicides is an amazing book. unlike some books, the author attempts and successfully takes the reader into another person's life and makes the reader feel as if it was him/her who is the character. although it was a really good book, i gave it 4 stars because i thought there was some things in the book that didn't need to be added plus it took a while to get to the point, but it all ties up in the end.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2004

    Adam Muir, Oxford, England

    I enjoyed this novel. People don't seem to realize that this isnt a story about the girls and their fascinating journey through their short lives. It is not even about the fact that all of these young beautiful girls commit suicide, this is revealed in the title and the very first line of the book. It is about the boys who watched from afar and worshipped them. This strange and almost unique narrative is retrospectively told 25 years after the events took place. Their obsession was so strong for these mysterious girls the boys are still affected. overall a good book, interesting to analyse and the film is well made too.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 1, 2004

    A review for The Virgin Suicide

    I picked this book to read for my reading class.The reason why I picked this book was because I have not seen the movie yet.I have always heard that the book is always better then the movie.So, I decided to see if people were right.Well,I still have not seen the movie but I really enjoyed the book.I enjoyed the book because the book, to me, tries to show that their is not always going to be a clear reason why people do what they do and that things are going to have a different meaning for different people.The book is a story about growing up,how people dealing with the life they have, about growing old,how memories faded, how people that don't really know each other have major in packets on one others lives, letting people in and many other things.If you choose to read this book it will have different meanings for you.I enjoyed the book and to me it was a good book thats about all I can tell you.Hope you enjoy it and like it as much as I did. Always, Johnnie Marie

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 3, 2004

    freshman student

    Reading this book was a good experience for me. This book was easy to follow and gave me the answers I was looking for. I love the style of writing that the author used. He prolonged the story for a while but he made his point. He was very detailed about the way the girls ended their lives. It's a sad book but I enjoyed it. It makes me think about the way I would raise my children. I would recomend this book to every one.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 14, 2004

    A wonderful book everyone can relate to!!!

    This book really relates to those individuals that have struggled with depression. This book allows you to get very close to the characters. At points in the book you can actually feel the girls desperation. This book shows that suicide is a major factor in today's life and how big of an issue it truly is. It also shows how some of us deal with a loss of someone we love and no matter how much we think no one cares, somebody always does.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2003

    A Great Book

    This is a great book that gets inside the head of some disturbed individuals. You see life from their point of view and how disturbing it seems to them. A great read and very interesting as well

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2002

    Suicidal

    one of the best books i've ever read. I recomend this to people who have the patience to finnish a great book even if it takes you three months.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2002

    i only saw the movie......

    i only saw the movie but i really want to read the book. i am a person who hates to read, but this book appeals to me very much. i cant wait to sit down and read it. i was kind of disappointed with the movie, because it left me wondering about many things. of what i have heard... the book ties the loose ends.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 13, 2003

    I read the book and saw the movie

    The book was very different from the movie. I got more information from the book. The Lisbons girls had a mother from HELL. I'm a parent and I wouldn't want my children to live like that. I didn't like the mother, because I felt like she was to hard on the girls. For any mothers who keeps their children away from society then this is a book you should consider reading. I think this book would make an impression on a teen girl that pretty much lives a life like the Lisbon girls. This is a book that makes a parent think : Am I being too hard on him/her ?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2002

    book of mystery

    The Virgin Suicides is a very powerful and moving book. It gets into the lives of the Lisbon sisters through the neighborhood boys. The novel is not a satire on suicide, it is simply a contemporary fable about how a tragedy impacts people¿s lives in the most ambiguous ways. It uses different perspectives, random pieces of information, and memories to tell its story about the downfall of innocence and the mysteries of life, which are never explained. The novel is very mysterious and leaves the reader to make his or her own conclusions. At times the book can be frustrating to read but once you have finished it, it¿s worth the struggle. The neighborhood boys are fascinated and obsessed with the Lisbon sisters. Observing the Lisbon sister¿s actions throughout the book, and their suicide leaves many unanswered questions. Once the book has been started, it is hard to put down. The story line is very intense and leaves the reader constantly wondering what will happen next. A movie was also released based on this novel. Although still good, the movie can¿t compare to the novel. At the end of the movie I left with the impression of being confused and wondering if I missed something because the movie would not have made sense if I haven¿t read the book before hand.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2002

    Depressing but Worthwhile

    This is indeed a powerful book. Of course it's depressing, because it concerns suicide and family abuse, but it is a worthwhile read because of the intriguing questions it brings up. However, it never answers said questions, so don't read it unless you want to be haunted for a while. I read it for English class, and it is a book that teachers like because there are so many things in it that can be analyzed. I would recommend it, but don't read it by yourself if you are feeling depressed - it won't help.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2002

    Surprisingly shocking!

    Wonderful book, but makes you relize the truth about sucides among teenage girls. YOU SHOULD READ IT! It was amazingly written and you can't put it down.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2002

    I thought it was good

    I read the book and then I saw the movie. It was actually pretty close to the book. I really can relate to this story because I tried to commit suicide when I was 12. I'm 13 now. So I give this book 4 stars.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 6, 2002

    Great

    I thought that this book was great. Though i have never tried to commit suicide nor do i know anyone who has tried, i thought that this book was great. It keep you wanting to read. I recommend this book not to teenagers but parents who are controlling. This will show you that if you do not let your children have some fun or enjoyment than you might just loose them. This book is about 5 sisters who's lives our controlled and are not allowed to go anywhere but these 2 events. ON top of that their dad is a teacher their school ! They kill themselves because their lives sucked. They did nothing but go to school. That is not a life. Yet after i was done this book i saw no good point to this book. Maybe it was because i can not relate to these girls.

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