"When we first meet 14-year-old Susie Salmon, she is already in heaven. This was before milk carton photos and public service announcements, she tells us; back in 1973, when Susie mysteriously disappeared, people still believed these things didn't happen.
In the sweet, untroubled voice of a precocious teenage girl, Susie relates the awful events of her death and her own adjustment to the strange new place she finds herself. It looks a lot like her school playground, with the good kind of swing sets.
With love, longing, and a growing understanding, Susie watches her family as they cope with their grief, her father embarks on a search for the killer, her sister undertakes a feat of amazing daring, her little brother builds a fort in her honor and begin the difficult process of healing.
In the hands of a brilliant novelist, the author narrates The Lovely Bones through the eyes of her winning young heroine. This story of seemingly unbearable tragedy is transformed into a suspenseful and touching story about family, memory, love, heaven, and living."...http://www.squidoo.com/alice-sebold#module4249259
I liked the story, but the narrator Alyssa Bresnahan just didn't do it for me. I ended up falling asleep through most of this story and had to listen to it again. I hope that the movie is as good as everyone had said.
Now that it's over, I wish I could make my mind forget it and then start all over again, but that isn't possible and I don't think I can listen again knowing all that I now know. I was on pins and needles the entire time wondering what would happen next. It was extremely emotional. Not in a completely overwhelming way, but I was so into the story the whole time and so concerned about all of the characters. The author is really good at leaving little reminders of who people are without making you feel like an idiot, which is very helpful since I do forget names as the chapters move forward. Although she goes back and forth in time, giving little "storiettes" throughout the book, I felt that I could follow along without much confusion. These little "stories" were little memories that came out which seemed so like the ones that might come organically to any of us. I think that this story struck me deeper because of the recent death of my friend's son. It is also the ever present question of "what happens when you die" which, if you haven't asked it, you would probably be the only one on earth. It was very painful to "feel" what this family and community went through upon the death of this 14 year old girl and the ripple effects that it had. I really felt that I might be left at the end with nothing good and true to hope for, but that isn't what happened. There is no great revelation, no wondrous glory, no "ah ha" moment, but a peace that you feel at the end of this book. I felt that hearing the story was just as worthwhile as reading it, it was unabridged or I probably would not have checked it out....I hate missing out on stuff.....the "reader" read it as I would in my mind when I read, so that was neat to me. I still feel really heavy over the experience, good and bad, but it does make you ponder your mortality....and the 'living' of your life and appreciating those that are part of your world. I think that when you die, more people are affected by it than you would ever imagine. More people care about you than you think. You mean more than you'll ever truly know....especially to those close to you.
This is a little afterthought message: I was reading the reviews of the book on Amazon when I came across this line: "And she paints, with an artist's precision, a portrait of a world where the terrible and the miraculous can and do co-exist." I am very near tears with this statement because it is true of all of our lives. A blink of an eye and things turn; a decision made and life changes course, along with a miriade of other lives it won't touch and a course that will lead them to lives that will be touched that would not if the choice had been different. I believe things happen for a reason, but I also believe there are some things that happen through free will (ours and others) that God uses to bring forth good in another way....Miracles and Horror....Horror and Miracles....the delicate balance of this thing we call life......