Thursday, February 25, 2010

My Biggest Fear and... Book Review: THE LOVELY BONES by Alice Sebold

This is going to be an easy post because hello---it will all come into a nice little circle. If I had blog bows I'd put one on.

So today I'm going to tell you a little bit about myself that is kind of personal and not a lot of people actually know about me. (Sara loves her lamb whores--- sparkly kisses to you!)

I, even at the age of 27 almost 28, am scared of the dark. Not all dark, like I can sleep in the dark just fine with no worries unless I have to get out of bed or something. You'll never see me take out the garbage in the dark. You'll never see me walking alone in the dark. I'll be outside in the dark if I have at least one person with me but I prefer more. I won't walk around my house in the dark. I'm terrified of scary movies. I believe in ghosts but they scare me. I'm scared to be in crowds by myself.

I also have a gut instinct that has never been wrong. I have the little hairs on the back of my neck and I always trust it.

There are lots of reasons I am like this but primarily it's from my early childhood. Without going into a lot of detail that I don't like to talk about, I will say that I have seen things little kids shouldn't see. I have lived in not so great neighborhoods. I was raised in the early 80's in Florida which is when a lot of kidnappers were just snatching kids so I grew up with a mom who was scared of that. And I'm actually thankful she was like that because I believe it gave me an intuition a lot of people don't have.

But I will tell you my biggest fear of all: To be abducted. I am terrified that I will be abducted, kidnapped, murdered, etc. You name it and I'm scared of it in that scenario. I can't even tell you how many times I have woken up at night by a dream of this happening to me.

So to that end, I decided to read a book that NOBODY with these kind of fears has any kind of business to read.

For those of you who don't know- this book is narrated by the main character really, Susie Salmon who was a 14 year old girl who was raped and murdered close to her home. Her entire body is never found, only an elbow, and it's the story of her watching her friends and family go on as she's in her Heaven.

There are a few things that freaked me out. Number one was her murder. It's gruesome and I am not going to lie- I couldn't sleep after I read it. I laid in bed with my light on. Number two is how it really highlights how everyone copes differently but because of that, the family falls apart. Number three is her description of Heaven. It's not this vast white space, it's whatever she wants it to be- she decides who/what is in her Heaven. Number four is the character I identified with even though I didn't want to. The mother. I really felt a connection to the mother who isn't even that great. She leaves her family because she really can't handle any of it. And as a young mom myself, I can really relate to the "I made a mistake and I want to start over" sentiment. Not that I would ever leave my children, but I can certainly understand that feeling.

I have to say that the book was kind of slow and frustrating to me. I really wanted legal justice, and although something happens to the killer that was probably a good ending just the same- I felt a sense of remorse for the other victims. The only think I thought was kind of far fetched is also at the end when Susie is in a living person's body. I don't know. I just felt like that wasn't really needed but on the other hand it gave a closure to the characters involved there.

In all, it was a good book. It was hard to continue reading in some spots because it was slow but it was interesting. Will I see the movie? Oh hell the fuck no. I'd be up in there crying and terrified to leave. :)


Anonymous said...

Great book I must say so myself. I felt the same way about wanting the more immediate gratification of legal justice, but I did enjoy the book, even in the slow parts. I do plan on seeing the movie because I am a horror movie maniac and am secretly in love with Mark Wahlberg.

PS: I am scared of the dark too - and also of clowns.

Tammy said...

Hey!! I was so happy I finally logged onto Blogger finally, and saw your review of The Lovely Bones, one of my favorite books. I agree it can be slow, but I really love it. I used to have dreams that are similar to Susie's that may have something to do with it. LoL.

BonBon Rose Girls Kristin said...

I grew up in Florida too. What is it with our state and predators? Frightening!

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed the book for the most part. But I'm torn between whether or not I should see the movie...I probably won't. I feel like it will be a lot scarier than the movie I played in my head when I read the book.

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird said...

I read that book a few years ago and was not entirely impressed. I don't know if maybe it was that time of my life or what but every time someone raves about it I find myself saying, "Really? I thought it was really slow moving and boring in parts."

I'm actually hoping the movie will be better. My sister in law didn't like it but she loved the book. So we'll see.

You should read Lucky, which is by the same author. That was REALLY good.

SpiritPhoenix said...

I too am overly aware of the dark. I don't walk around in the dark, and sometimes don't walk around places during the day. (I think it's from going to college in Detroit.)

I'll take your word on the book. I'm too chicken to read it. Plus, having my own little daughter (only 1 but still) I freak out abnormally when I hear or see or read about children getting hurt now. Much more than before I was a mom.

(BTW, I stumbled over your blog a day or so ago. Nice place you got here.)

Sam said...

Loved the book. I dont want to see the movie though, not because it looks too scary(well partly), but because I have an image of all the characters and how everything played out and looked and im always disappointed when the movie doesnt match up in my head. I know that will never happen but I actually dont like some movies because its not how I pictured them, I guess thats why they say the book is always better than the movie. I am terrified of the dark too, not running and jumping across the room into bed scared ;), thats only because I stand on my bed to turn the ceiling fan light off. Man do I get under the covers fast though. :)

Unknown said...

Hi Sara - Just writing to say I love reading your blog. I just started blogging this month. I haven't read the book and probably won' much scary stuff for me and I hate scary movies. I am also terrified of the dark and I still sleep with a nightlight on....or would never sleep.

My blog is at

Where did you get your blog template? I love it!

Sara said...

Not going to read or watch the movie, even without your review, I just can't do it! Though I love Mark Walburg. Love him. Have you seen Shooter?

Sara Strand said...

@Amber- can you imagine seeing a clown in the dark? I would die. I'm sure I would die.

@Kristin- I have LOADS of scary stories from Florida. I think the fact the state looks like a sideways gun maybe has something to do with it.

@Sam- I totally do the run & jump thing.

@Erin- thank you baby. ;)

@Sara- No, I've never seen Shooter. Or if I did I don't remember. I'm such a movie slacker. I have to do better.

Pinay in Dutchland said...

Didnt it just break your heart when you thought that rapist and murderer got away? And at that point you realized the message of the story, about letting go. And then you witness at the end how the universe takes care of its own garbage.

I have never read the book, I saw the movie. And I think it is great. Thanks for sharing your views.

Veronica M. D. said...

I know exactly what you mean. I read the book when it first came out and it was like a love/hate relationship: freaked the bejesus out of me but was a good read. And hell to the no, Bobby B, I will NEVER see the movie, because I am pretty sure I will never sleep again.

Julie H said...

I haven't read that one or seen the movie but I heard the movie was horrible!