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The Lovely Bones [Audio CD]

Alice Sebold , Alyssa Bresnahan
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2,092 customer reviews)

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Kindle Edition --  
Hardcover CDN $17.52  
Paperback, Bargain Price CDN $7.20  
Mass Market Paperback CDN $9.49  
Audio, CD, Audiobook, Unabridged CDN $15.66  
Audio, CD, August 2002 --  
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Book Description

August 2002
Once in a generation a novel comes along that taps a vein of universal human experience, resonating with readers of all ages. THE LOVELY BONES is such a book -- a #1 bestseller celebrated at once for its artistry, for its luminous clarity of emotion, and for its astonishing power to lay claim to the hearts of millions of readers around the world.

"My name was Salmon, like the fish; first name, Susie. I was fourteen when I was murdered on December 6, 1973."

So begins the story of Susie Salmon, who is adjusting to her new home in heaven, a place that is not at all what she expected, even as she is watching life on earth continue without her -- her friends trading rumors about her disappearance, her killer trying to cover his tracks, her grief-stricken family unraveling. Out of unspeakable tragedy and loss, THE LOVELY BONES succeeds, miraculously, in building a tale filled with hope, humor, suspense, even joy.

The major motion picture version of THE LOVELY BONES, directed by Peter Jackson and starring Rachel Weisz, Susan Sarandon, Mark Wahlberg, Stanley Tucci, and Saoirse Ronan is scheduled for release on December 11, 2009.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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From Amazon

On her way home from school on a snowy December day, 14-year-old Susie Salmon is lured into a cornfield and brutally raped and murdered, the latest victim of a serial killer. The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold's haunting and heartbreaking debut novel, unfolds from heaven, where "life is a perpetual yesterday" and where Susie narrates and keeps watch over her grieving family and friends, as well as her brazen killer and the sad detective working on her case.

As Sebold fashions it, everyone has his or her own version of heaven. Susie's resembles the athletic fields and landscape of a suburban high school: a heaven of her "simplest dreams", where "there were no teachers... We never had to go inside except for art class... The boys did not pinch our backsides or tell us we smelled; our textbooks were Seventeen and Glamour and Vogue".

The Lovely Bones works as an odd yet affecting coming-of-age story. Susie struggles to accept her death while still clinging to the lost world of the living, following her family's dramas over the years. Her family disintegrates in their grief: her father becomes determined to find her killer, her mother withdraws, her little brother Buckley attempts to make sense of the new hole in his family and her younger sister Lindsey moves through the milestone events of her teenage and young adult years with Susie riding spiritual shotgun. Random acts and missed opportunities run throughout the book--Susie recalls her sole kiss with a boy on earth as "like an accident--a beautiful gasoline rainbow".

Though sentimental at times, The Lovely Bones is a moving exploration of loss and mourning that ultimately puts its faith in the living and that is made even more powerful by a cast of convincing characters. Sebold orchestrates a big finish and though things tend to wrap up a little too well for everyone in the end, one can only imagine (or hope) that heaven is indeed a place filled with such happy endings. --Brad Thomas Parsons, Amazon.com --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Reading her breakout novel, Sebold's even, unemotional voice is a good match for both the drab setting of a Midwest town enduring the 1970s and for her matter-of-fact writing, which manages to seem grounded even as the protagonist narrates from heaven after her brutal murder. Sebold doesn't bother with voicing characters differently; the murdered girl, Susie Salmon, is the listener's window into the world she was forced to leave behind, and Sebold uses a flat, deliberate voice that manages to sound both weary and wistful. Snatches of melancholy chamber music close each track and provide more explicit emotion. What Sebold's voice lacks in stylistic flourish she makes up for with perfect pacing. In an introductory segment, Sebold recounts the novel's genesis and mentions that part of her working process involves reading everything back to herself, which explains her expert rhythm. On the final disc, Sebold reads the first chapter of her 2007 novel, The Almost Moon. While Sebold's fans will be eager for the chance to hear her read, the uninitiated may wish for a bit more passion in her presentation. A Back Bay Books paperback (Reviews, June 17, 2002).
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Solid but not earth-shattering March 9 2006
Format:Paperback
The Lovely Bones, by Alice Sebold is a unique tale of a young girl's journey through the afterlife. Susie Salmon is a fourteen-year-old girl struggling to understand her seemingly horrible fate from heaven as life continues moving without her. As she embarks on this strange journey, Susie cannot help but watch her loved ones she has left behind to pick up the pieces. The Lovely Bones is an extraordinary piece that exemplifies the theory that there truly is life after death, far beyond the mere idea of where we go when we die. Sebold's strength as a writer makes for a unique and refreshing tale of an otherwise tragic event the novel has some, but few weaknesses. As a whole, I think this is a wonderful novel and would recommend it to anyone looking for a quality, meaningful read. I've read it twice and each time been moved to tears multiple times during the novel. I think Sebold does an amazing job defining what family means. The way she deals with the topic of death is so obscure it's like nothing I've ever read. I really was intrigued by the way she depicted heaven as so much more than clouds and angels. It's a book that not only presents a situation, but leaves room for the reader to connect the dots themselves. For another completely different read (funny and enlightening though NOTHING like "Bones") try McCrae's "Katzenjammer." Very well done.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing And Emotional! April 18 2004
Format:Hardcover
I found this book to be rather disturbing and emotional to the point that I would put it down only to pick it up again based on the fact that so many of my friends found it a good read. I admit that the idea of a young girl narrating from her idea of what Heaven is was a good one. Watching her family and the trials they go through after her murder was a different way to show us how death effects different people. With that said I must admit that I had a hard time caring how Mom, sister Lindsay, and the rest of the motley crew felt or how the death of susie affected the different characters in the end. Susie's mom was probably the most unlikeable character in my opinion, and I wanted to like her since I am also a mother and could not imagine for one second how I would feel if one of my children was taken from me in such a violent way. The way she just shut down on everyone (including her two other children) and turned to the police detective was in my opinion what turned me off to her.
Still I continued to read this book only to be totally let down by the ending. I hope my next read by this author is not such a let down.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my two favorite books June 2 2005
Format:Paperback
Any reader lucky enough to peruse THE LOVELY BONES will know how fortunate they are to be in on the early stages of what appears to be a super talent. The creative story line is deftly handled so that the audience can follow how various key players, especially the Salmon family insuring Susie, cope or not with their loss. Alice Sebold provides a tremendous character driven tale that though melancholy yet optimist makes reading a heaven on earth. For anyone who has lost a loved one, LOVELY BONES gives hope, closure and healing. The aching question of "where are you?" is dealt with compassionately but without heavy religious overtones. You won't find harp plucking angels or a benevolent Father sitting on a throne. Instead a lively fourteen year old who violently leaves the earth, is most interested in keeping tabs on her family and friends. They continue to grow, she stays fourteen. They face painful obstacles she is powerless to change, and yet... It is a very worthwhile read. I only wish I hadn't finished it so quickly. This is a book to savor and Sebold's prose is lyrical. One wants to reread and write lines down. The only other book that I liked this much was BARK OF THE DOGWOOD with its quirky characters, thought-provoking ideas, humor, and decadence.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover
Captivated by critical praise and a supernatural plot, I was a bit skeptical that any book could live up to its structural and pop culture status. "The Lovely Bones" met and exceeded all of my expectations and then some. Sebold brings forth a spectrum of emotions that are both difficult to express and yet thrilling to any reader who's experienced sheer joy from the written page. Our heroine, a heaven-bound adolescent is ripped away(literally and figuratively) from earth and its bounty of family, friends and real life pleasures. Looking down from above, with newfound wisdom and more than a few regrets, the narrator steers us through a web of self-dicovery, within her self, her family, and even, within us - her audience. Sebold manages to weave a bold mosaic of sorrow and joy, disaster and bliss, with words that simply take your breath away so that you find yourself re-reading passages just to be enveloped in their magical truth again and again. This is simple yet important prose...at once whimsical and deep. It's the sort of book that makes you think twice about the choices we have, the ones we make, and the ones we might later regret not choosing.
My only wish is that Hollywood leave this novel alone and refrain from attempting to replicate its sincere qualities on-screen. No screenplay, or director, or acting ensemble could supplant the power of "the Bones'" narrative. Destined to become a perennial favorite, the "Lovely Bones" is best left to the senses and the imagination that captivates readers in unique, individual ways. Buy it, share it, cherish it!
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read
I totally enjoyed this book. It's an old story but told from the victim's point of view. Interesting and unnerving at times, but genuine. Enjoyed it very much.
Published 2 months ago by Christine
5.0 out of 5 stars Profile of a Murderer
A deeply moving story about a young woman's terrible murder. Her family and boyfriend's lives are forever changed by their loss and by their unique responses to the tragedy. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Eleanor Cowan
5.0 out of 5 stars Condition of used book
I purchased a used book, expected to see a lightly battered book, would have been thrilled to get it any old way at that great price........I wanted it so much...... Read more
Published 3 months ago by diane desjardins
5.0 out of 5 stars good read
This is good winter reading. Interesting and believable characters who each learn to deal with their grief in their own inperfect way.
Published 6 months ago by Ally
4.0 out of 5 stars daughter essay in englush class
needed it for daughter. she loved it . it was an essay in high school. she thought it was a little disturbing at the beginning but then enjoyed it
Published 8 months ago by Tina
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved this book and the movie
I saw the movie first and then read the book. I loved both of them. It's a good, bittersweet read...from start to finish.
Published 8 months ago by Lamb
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Story With a New Twist
I particularly liked the fact that the story was narrated by the deceased. It was well written--not too long and the story moved right along to the conclusion. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Chris from Canada
5.0 out of 5 stars Review for The Lovely Bones
I had the movie and wanted to read it first. The book came on time and is as described. Everything I have bought from Amazon has been excellent. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Helene Nantel
5.0 out of 5 stars This Novel Broke My Heart
I don't often read contemporary fiction. I tend to stick to the classics: Steinbeck, Vonnegut and Hawthorne spring first to mind.

I despise Dan Brown. Read more
Published 13 months ago by Adamo
5.0 out of 5 stars SO SAD
The book is detailed and well written. The movie has no comparison. Lovely Bones is a sad story but leaves you hopeful. Great read.
Published on June 21 2012 by nikki
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