Reader reviews and comments on The Lovely Bones, plus links to write your own review.

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Lovely Bones

By Alice Sebold

The Lovely Bones
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Hardcover: Jun 2002,
    288 pages.
    Paperback: Apr 2004,
    352 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

Page 1 of 15
There are currently 115 reader reviews for The Lovely Bones
Order Reviews by:

Write your own review!

SSE (08/21/13)

So disappointing
I thought it was a terrible book. After my friend recommend this to me and I have to do this for school, I decided to give it a try with an open mind. but I was very disappointed. It was extremely difficult to finish this book because the plot is everywhere. There are abrupt shifts from each event and even sudden changes of characters that literally came out of nowhere. Other than that, it was very boring to read about a young girl's memory with her mother. The young characters act too mature than they should be.
Amanda Rodriguez (12/19/11)

The Lovely Bones
Alice Sebold’s first novel, The Lovely Bones, is a thrilling yet emotionally sentimental fiction story. The story opens with the voice of fourteen-year-old Susie Salmon who tells of her rape and murder by her neighbor. The major thriller of the novel is knowing who has murdered Susie when everyone else does not. Alice Sebold does an outstanding job keeping her readers wanting more.

The book comes alive to the readers, keeping them forever interested. We get to see the point-of-view from the victim herself. We see Susie’s heaven and we follow her as she watches her family cope with her death. Sebold intrigues the readers to want to help the family find out who the killer was, because we know it was Mr. Harvey. These are just a few examples as to how Sebold puts extraordinary effort into her details.

Alice Sebold can relate to the book from a personal stand point. Sebold is a survivor of rape. Readers can almost visualize the murder scene due to the excellent expression and detail Sebold is able to share from her experience. The author writes: “As he kissed his wet lips down my face and neck and then began to shove his hand up my skirt, I wept.” From details such as that we are able to feel both Alice Sebold and Susie Salmon’s pain during their tragic moments.

Along with great detail, the author is able to keep a general audience at all times with appropriate language and wording throughout the novel. This allows readers to be able to continue reading without having to stop and question themselves, this is a very important detail when writing a book. Alice jumps from Heaven with Susie to Susie’s family on Earth. She uses transaction sentences to keep her readers allows following along for example: “My favorite part was how colored blocks were turquoise and orange, just like the blocks in Fairfax High.” Sebold uses transactions like this to keep her audience bouncing back and forth with the flow of the story. We are able to feel the grief of the Salmon family through Susie’s views from her Heaven.

In Conclusion, The Lovely Bones is an intriguing and heart filled novel. The author does an outstanding job on her first premier novel. Sebold makes the book come to life for her readers and keeps them interested. The author’s tragic rape incident in her own personal life left her with the ability to write such a detailed story of a young girl’s murder. Sebold is also able to stick to a general audience by using appropriate word choice and language. The author leaves her readers with sympathy in their hearts for the Salmon family, giving The Lovely Bones the title of a phenomenal best seller.
Reader (10/29/11)

" The Lovely Bones" review
The book " The Lovely Bones" is a great book for anyone who likes to read suspense novels and that enjoy types of novels with tragic happenings. I'm not quite done with the " The Lovely Bones", but I can say that it is a great book as far as I'm concerned. You will cry at this novel for two reasons the tragedy and the joy of this book.
Typeaux (08/27/10)

Difficult to Categorize
I enjoyed this book and found it compelling reading by virtue of the author's finesse. The emotions here are quieter, more subdued, yet familiar and poignant. The book doesn't have the usual dramatic hook, nor does it build to a swelling crescendo either in action or emotion. Still, the reader is lifted along with gentle hands in this ultimate voyeurism -- watching the living through the eyes of the deceased, with all the wonderment and revelation it contains.
Karen Trevino (07/14/10)

Great Book
The “Lovely Bones”, written by Alice Sebold, is a book about how difficult it was for a family to cope with the loss of a child due to a violent crime. Susie Salmon was a 14- year-old girl who was raped and killed by her neighbor, a serial killer of young girls, who moves from town to town after each of his crimes. Susie ascends to heaven where she struggles to accept her death while she is still clinging on to the life that she had on earth by following her family’s dramas over the years. She watches and comments how her family and close ones are affected by her death, and how they are moving on with their lives and her death.

The first part of the book had more of a mysterious tone to it. Susie’s dad knows that their creepy neighbor, Mr. Harvey killed his daughter, but he doesn’t have proof to prove to the police that he did it. Meanwhile, Susie is living in her perfect heaven, playing on swings and hanging out with a little girl named Holly.

The second half of this book becomes more of a pure ghost story, where Susie watches all her loved ones grow older and she observes the different turns and paths that they take in their life.

Alice Sebold does a marvelous job of writing a story that is both tragic and full of much light and grace but also full of suspense and delight. She shows how a tragedy can truly tear a family apart, but also brings them back together again. Alice really captured both the ordinary little ideas and the extraordinary, horrific scenes that happened throughout the book.

Some of the weaknesses that I noticed that book had was how it sometimes got really confusing to understand what they were talking about because you didn’t know if it was present tense or past tense, since the book moves back and forward the whole time. Another weakness that I saw was how the author tries to make things more than they need to be. Sehold goes far in depth to describe something when it really doesn’t have to be described in depth. Overall the strengths outweigh the weaknesses, because the Lovely Bones was such a beautiful and touching book even though it was a really sad. This book teaches how usually people can overcome anything, even though it does not happen easily or even the way we might expect it. I really recommend this book to anyone because it is such a unique and meaningful book.
Arii (06/03/10)

Lovely Book
I greatly enjoyed reading Alice Sebold's novel. It was a suspenseful book that was hard to put down but easy to get into. I recommend this!
TEEJAY (03/30/10)

COULDN'T PUT IT DOWN!
This book is a great read and a disappointing one as well. I so wanted the perverted killer to experience some vigilante justice...[spoiler removed]. The author's vision of heaven is interesting and makes you think that dying isn't all that bad if that sort of heaven does truly exist? (Dont really want to find out anytime soon lol!). If you like this book I would suggest another good read. (WHERE SERPENTS LIE) both of these books remind us of the sick perverted world that we now live in and how our kids are truly never safe. I sure am glad my kids are grown, not looking forward to grandchildren to worry about!!
katelynn (03/22/10)

it was ok
The book was an alright read considering how most people that read the book said it had too many errors and lacked many things. I read the book and I watched the movie. Sad to say but the movie was better than the book and I don't normally go that way. because I often find that the books are better. Oh, well.
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  
Sign up, win books!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: A Man Called Ove
    A Man Called Ove
    by Fredrik Backman
    Reading A Man Called Ove was like having Christmas arrive early. Set in Sweden, this debut novel is ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Search
    by Geoff Dyer
    All hail the independent publisher! In May 2014, Graywolf Press brought two of long-revered British ...
  • Book Jacket
    Mrs. Hemingway
    by Naomi Wood
    Naomi Wood's latest novel, Mrs. Hemingway, is a fictionalized biography covering in turn writer...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Arsonist
by Sue Miller

Published Jun. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  119Tomlinson Hill:
    Chris Tomlinson
  2.  171The City:
    Dean Koontz

All Discussions

Win this book!
Win The Angel of Losses

The Angel of Losses

"Family saga, mystery, and myth intersect in Feldman's debut novel." - Booklist

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

E C H A Silver L

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.