What aspect of the novel The Lovely Bones do you connect with the most? What aspect of the novel The Lovely Bones do you connect with the most?

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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As this is a personal opinion question, I would say that the aspect of the novel that I relate to the most is the pain, angst, and frustration of Susie. Here is someone young and innocent; she has never hurt anyone and is too young to even hold grudges. Still, crime and evil came for her and destroyed her life. Now she lingers in the atmosphere still wondering why. 

As someone who has also been a victim of crime and the cruelty of others, I can attest to the fact that, to a non-victim,  it would be terrifyingly haunting to experience the things that we go through on a daily basis. Once crime touches you, you are never the same again. You develop anger, frustration, pain, guilt, and all the sentiments that Susie Salmon describes in the novel. Sebold did a fantastic job at transferring the emotional mess that results from being a crime victim. 

Finally, the fact that Susie longs and wishes for a life, knowing that a criminal chose for her not to have one, is perhaps the part of the novel that most strongly gnaws at the soul of the reader. To have someone violate your human rights is bad enough; to have them end your life is deplorable. This is why the law prescribes the ultimate punishment for it. 

Therefore, the aspect of "living in death" is haunting, terrifying, and, at the same time, painful. This aspect elicits empathy and compassion from the reader and an understanding that any of us could be Susie Salmon: anyone can be a victim of someone else's inner turmoil. 

teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

From the first page, I connected with the narrative voice.  At the time I read The Lovely Bones, I had never read a novel in which the narrator was dead.  I thought it was quite clever on the part of Sebold to attempt a nonstandard narrator.  Through Susie's narration, I felt a range of emotions as the details of her murder and her family's grief unfolded.  There is such suspense when her family gets close to finding her body and she cannot reach out to them.

ask996 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I connect with the character of Jack. As a parent, I can imagine no grief greater than losing a child. I would not stop searching until the killer was discovers, and I have no doubt that I could then take the law into my own hands. What I don't understand is the mother who having lost one huge piece of her family, through the others aside in an effort to heal herself.

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The Lovely Bones

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