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The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
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The Virgin Suicides (original 1993; edition 1994)

by Jeffrey Eugenides

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
8,958160334 (3.81)1 / 295
Member:chevrefeuille
Title:The Virgin Suicides
Authors:Jeffrey Eugenides
Info:Grand Central Publishing (1994), Paperback, 256 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:*****
Tags:death, suicide, american, mi, 1970's, fiction, pb, mooched, outstanding

Work details

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides (1993)

  1. 40
    The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (readerbabe1984, RosyLibrarian)
  2. 62
    Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides (bookmomo)
    bookmomo: share the same exquisite sense of setting: boring, but not terrible suburban America, second half of last century.
  3. 10
    See How Small: A Novel by Scott Blackwood (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  4. 10
    White Oleander by Janet Fitch (RosyLibrarian)
  5. 00
    Practical Jean by Trevor Cole (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  6. 00
    The Fates Will Find Their Way by Hannah Pittard (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  7. 00
    Other Voices, Other Rooms by Truman Capote (weener)
    weener: Both books with a srong sense of setting, with a sense of foreboding and decay.
  8. 00
    Liars and Saints by Maile Meloy (freddlerabbit)
    freddlerabbit: The styles and narrative perspectives of these two books remind me strongly of one another.
  9. 00
    Whores on the Hill by Colleen Curran (jbarry)
  10. 00
    Paint It Black by Janet Fitch (jbarry)
  11. 00
    Quiet Chaos by Sandro Veronesi (bookmomo)
    bookmomo: Both original and intriguing stories about loss and grieving.
  12. 02
    We Were the Mulvaneys by Joyce Carol Oates (ainsleytewce)
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English (152)  Dutch (3)  German (1)  Italian (1)  Spanish (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (159)
Showing 1-5 of 152 (next | show all)
In The Virgin Suicides, we find out in the first two pages that the Lisbon girls all commit suicide during their teenage years. So if you have never read this novel two things may spring to mind, firstly, that is surely a spoiler, and secondly, how can a book that tells you what happens so plainly at the very start hold together for the next 250 pages. What keeps your intrigue in this novel, for me anyway, is how can four sisters in the same family all kill themselves and it be allowed to happen? Why have both the parents (that live in the same house as them) as well as the authorities (school, social services), and neighbours let this occur, and more macabre, how do they actually kill themselves? How does this affect the people around them? What made them want to kill themselves–social, psychological, physical, chemical factors? The questions the reader is continually asking pulls you through the book and more than holds your attention. This is a book you could easily read in a day.
I did not realise it is a film by Sophie Coppola also.

The Writing IMP
  IanMPindar | Sep 25, 2014 |
Second reading and I loved as much (or more) as I remember it. Haunting, beautiful, sad. ( )
  dulcinea14 | Sep 18, 2014 |
So, I didn't love this book. The "Black Humor" quoted in all the reviews was there but ultimately I just found The Virgin Suicides rather bleak and depressing. The narrator was unreliable and had access to information he shouldn't have known, which irritated me. The group of boys (which included the narrator) were repellently voyeuristic. The parents were incredibly repressive and then ultimately expressed little remorse over the death of their children (hopefully that is not a spoiler, based on the title). It was an interesting glimpse into teen hood and small town America. I am glad I read it just so I know what people are referring to, but I am not a Jeffrey Eugenides fan...yet. (Middlesex won the Pulitzer so I may have to give him another try.) ( )
  Berly | Aug 31, 2014 |
4th read of booktubeathon. This was just eh for me I've read a lot better suicide books before. ( )
  AryaDragon | Aug 26, 2014 |
4th read of booktubeathon. This was just eh for me I've read a lot better suicide books before. ( )
  AryaDragon | Aug 26, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 152 (next | show all)
Mr. Eugenides is blessed with the storyteller's most magical gift, the ability to transform the mundane into the extraordinary.
added by stephmo | editNew York Times, Suzanne Berne (Apr 25, 1993)
 
Adopting a tone simultaneously elegiac and loony, The Virgin Suicides takes the dark stuff of Greek tragedy and reworks it into an eccentric, mesmerizing, frequently hilarious American fantasy about the tyranny of unrequited love, and the unknowable heart of every family on earth — but especially the family next door.
 

» Add other authors (16 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jeffrey Eugenidesprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Landrum, NickNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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On the morning the last Lisbon daughter took her turn at suicide -- it was Mary this time, and the sleeping pills, like Therese -- the two paramedics arrived at the house knowing exactly where the knife drawer was, and the gas oven, and the beam in the basement from which it was possible to tie a rope.
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Obviously, Doctor… you’ve never been a thirteen-year-old girl.
They knew everything about us though we couldn’t fathom them at all.
The girls were right in choosing to love Trip, because he was the only boy who could keep his mouth shut.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0446670251, Paperback)

Juxtaposing the most common and the most gothic, the humorous and the tragic, author Jeffrey Eugenides creates a vivid and compelling portrait of youth and lost innocence. He takes us back to the elm-lined streets of suburbia in the seventies, and introduces us to the men whose lives have been forever changed by their fierce, awkward obsession with five doomed sisters: brainy Therese, fastidious Mary, ascetic Bonnie, libertine Lux, and pale, saintly Cecilia, whose spectacular demise inaugurates "the year of the suicides." This is the debut novel that caused a sensation and won immediate acclaim from the critics-a tender, wickedly funny tale of love and terror, sex and suicide, memory and imagination.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:38:08 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

The narrator and his friends piece together the events that led up to the suicides of the Lisbon girls--brainy Therese, fastidious Mary, ascetic Bonnie, libertine Lux, and saintly Cecilia.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

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