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The Lovely Bones

The Lovely Bones

by Alice Sebold

The Supernatural Theme

This is where things get fun. Whereas we know that the violent crimes in The Lovely Bones are reflections of brutal reality, the supernatural events of the novel leave us room to indulge our imaginations and dream of a beautiful beyond. Susie is definitely a nice kind of ghost. She's only mean to bad guys. Her powers are often limited to casting her reflection in glass surfaces and thinking hard about people to make them think of her. In all, the supernatural aspects of the novel give us some hope and a counterbalance the grimness of death. Such aspects also argue that it's important that we remember the dead, and discover and share the truths of their lives and death. Doing so helps them to forget about Earth and move on.

Questions About The Supernatural

  1. How would you describe Susie as a ghost? Is she a stereotype? Why or why not? What are her powers? Her limitations?
  2. Was it right for her to use Ruth's body to have sex with Ray? Why or why not?
  3. Would you like to read more books with ghostly narrators? Why or why not? Is it harder to relate to Susie since she's not living?
  4. Did Susie have a hand in Harvey's death?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

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