Author: Alice Sebold
ISBN/Publisher: 0-316-17072-0/Back Bay Books (part of Hachette Book Group)
Age Group/Genre: Mature Young Adult to Adult/General Fiction
Susie Salmon, a teenage girl, is raped and murdered by a neighbor. And this is how Susie begins her story. She tells us what happened, but the biggest part of the novel is how she watches everyone she knew from Heaven.
Heaven to Susie is a place that looks like the high school she would have attended, with a few exceptions. But it is also a place that can be described as an "in between." She is stuck there until she can let go of what happened on Earth. And so she watches her family and friends and how they move on after Susie's death.
Susie narration from Heaven seemed like a great idea and I really liked it. Her thoughts on this in between place really got me thinking about an afterlife and how your family moves on. But I also kind of got bored in the middle of the book. Following her family for about ten years seemed a little too long for me. But I did get through it.
This is a coming-of-age story that was interesting since the girl growing up was dead. However, we also see her siblings grow up and how they deal with a brutal death of a sister.
My major problem with the story was a sex scene towards the end of the book. I'm not going to get into detail with it because it is sort of a spoiler. But I do think the story could have done without it.
This book was alright...I wish I didn't buy it though. If my opinion counts...you should just borrow it from a friend or check it out at the library.
(I bought this copy from a store called Power Books)
BTW-The book was adapted for a movie and is out January 2010