Thursday, August 31, 2006
The Most Unusual Mainstream Book I've Ever Read
I have finally read The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold. I think it's safe to say this is a mainstream book. Lots and lots and lots and lots of people have read it. It still gets checked out at the library on a regular basis. I bought my copy at Target. This is a book that all kinds of people have read & enjoyed.
This is also a book that is in no way typical. The narrator is dead. She died a tragic, violent death, and now we get to see how her family and friends are coping, through her observations from heaven. I don't want to go into details on what heaven is like for Susie, the dead narrator, but I do want to say it's not a super-cheery, angel-filled place where God himself / herself / itself / themselves hang out with her every day. I just wanted to clarify that this isn't a popular book because it paints a popular picture of heaven. I am perplexed, yet not surprised, really, that such an unusual book became so mainstream.
I can't be too surprised, because I did enjoy it, and I'm sure lots of the other people who've read it did too. It's a very likeable book. I don't know that it's one of my most favorite, but I'm very glad I've read it. Oddly, even though Susie was the narrator and main character, I found her to be the least interesting. Her family and friends left on Earth were the ones who pulled me in. Oh, yeah, and Mr. Harvey-- sick, but interesting.