July 19, 2003
The Lovely Bones: A Novel by Alice Sebold

The Lovely Bones: A Novel by Alice Sebold: I tried to tell some friends who came over this weekend why exactly this book was so good, but it seems hard for most of the people to get past the fact that this book is by a girl who has just been raped and murdered by a family acquaintance as she watches down on her family from Heaven. Of course, her heaven has the high school that she went to with the wonderful architecture that she loved so, but they never have to go to class and their textbooks are Vogue and Seventeen.

Susie watches her family try and come to grip with the sudden hole that she has left in their midst. She can’t influence them, but she cannot tear herself away from them either.

What moved me most about this book was the way that the characters - from the boy who gave Susie her first kiss to her sister to her little brother to the girl who felt her soul leaving this earth to her killer - were intertwined. The story’s biggest impact on me was simply the way that one must learn to let go - not forget, no - but let go when a tragedy like this has occurred.

Sebold writes with a clear voice that makes all of the people in her book incredible real and alive. I can’t help but worry for her family as they try and stay together. I can’t help buy worry about Ray, the boy who kissed her - will he be able to move past almost having her?

Oddly, though, George Harvey, the man who killed Susie was never much in my mind. I think it was because I loved her family so, that as long as he wasn’t near them to do harm, he didn’t really matter much to me.

Despite the morbid tone to the idea of this book, this book does not ever come close to being morbid. In fact I found it full of promises, light, and hope and I hope that everyone will take time to read this amazing novel.

July 17, 2003
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë: I was excited when I was able to borrow this book from a fellow Book Crossing member. I kept thinking, “Tragic, gothic romance. Should be right up my alley!” Unfortunately, I found it not to be.

I know that I’ve liked other books from this time period (Jane Eyre and (Madame Bovary for example), but I found Wuthering Heights to be extremely difficult to get into. I also had a rough time keeping track of the characters and their relationships to one another as well.

To me, I think the biggest problem was that I didn’t really like any of the characters. By having no particular character to root for, it became a laborious task to continue with the book. However, around page 200 or so, I finally found a character that I could sympathize with and like and I felt that the book picked up and managed to draw me in since I did want to see how it ended. I don’t know, though, if slogging through the first part of the novel made it worthwhile.