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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
9,536188304 (3.8)1 / 315
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. 82
    Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides (bookmomo)
    bookmomo: share the same exquisite sense of setting: boring, but not terrible suburban America, second half of last century.
  2. 50
    The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (readerbabe1984, rosylibrarian)
  3. 20
    White Oleander by Janet Fitch (rosylibrarian)
  4. 10
    The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky (lucyknows)
    lucyknows: Virgin Suicides is pretty heavy going however there are quite a few films about teenage angst they might work. Some are darker than others and some are quite old but they could work with Perks... Breakfast Club, Heathers, Girl Interrupted, Rebel without a cause, Footloose, The Year my Voice Broke, Donnie Darko, Ferris Bueller's Day Off.… (more)
  5. 10
    A Crime in the Neighborhood by Suzanne Berne (si)
  6. 10
    See How Small by Scott Blackwood (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  7. 10
    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
    Paint It Black by Janet Fitch (jbarry)
  9. 00
    Quiet Chaos by Sandro Veronesi (bookmomo)
    bookmomo: Both original and intriguing stories about loss and grieving.
  10. 00
    Whores on the Hill: A Novel by Colleen Curran (jbarry)
  11. 00
    The Fates Will Find Their Way by Hannah Pittard (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  12. 00
    Liars and Saints by Maile Meloy (freddlerabbit)
    freddlerabbit: The styles and narrative perspectives of these two books remind me strongly of one another.
  13. 00
    Practical Jean: A Novel (P.S.) by Trevor Cole (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  14. 12
    We Were the Mulvaneys by Joyce Carol Oates (ainsleytewce)
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English (177)  Dutch (5)  Italian (1)  German (1)  Finnish (1)  Norwegian (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (187)
Showing 1-5 of 177 (next | show all)
Demasiado obsesivo, muchas vueltas a una familia en la que la madre es una desequilibrada y el padre se deja llevar. Muy buen análisis psicológico de la mentalidad adolescente. ( )
  naturaworld | Aug 12, 2016 |
I wasn't expecting to like this book because 1) I hadn't cared for the movie, and 2) I really don't like Middlesex, which is also by Jeffrey Eugenides. The book was only $2 at the flea market, though, and I needed something to read, so I scooped it up and gave it a try.

I am so glad that I did. Once I started this book, I couldn't put it down. I literally walked down the street reading it. The story is captivating, even though you know from the first sentence how it all ends. It's fascinating to watch it unfold through the recollections of an unnamed narrator.

I would give this more than five stars if possible. ( )
  kathleenbarber | Aug 8, 2016 |
This is not a good book.

Also, I do not care about Trip's nipples. There, I said it.
( )
  thebookmagpie | Aug 7, 2016 |
A compelling first person plural narrative voice (“we”) relates the events and atmosphere of a dreadful year in which five young girls, sisters, take their own lives. The narration is from many years later, looking backward, in the form of a quasi-official report with “exhibits” mentioned such as photographs and items collected from the girls’ home. The collective voice identifies a number of young boys who lived on or near the street on which the Lisbon girls lived. These boys are the principle source of information on the girls, though their hormonal voyeurism suggests that their information may not be entirely trustworthy. In addition to the boys, now men, there is additional input from “interviews” with others either directly connected to the girls, e.g. their parents, or tangentially connected, such as their teachers, doctors, or therapists. Together with the gathering gloom of a neighbourhood and nation of declining economic significance and moral rectitude, the year of the so-called virgin suicides marks these boys for life. So much so that it is hard to know what precisely they may have made of their lives.

Eugenides’ narration is entrancing and troubling from the outset. With the youngest Lisbon sister’s initial suicide, and the eddying speculation on its cause and meaning, Eugenides sets us wondering about our own relations to neighbours, community, and history. The pluralized narrator of the story is never satisfied with any explanation of the girls’ actions, whether simple or complex. But his/their insistence on digging deeper and deeper begins to feel unhealthy, almost predatory. And that unease begins to pervade the whole account, leaving the reader fascinated but disquieted. A very curious effect to produce, or to wish to produce.

Definitely a novel that deserves to be read and thought about. And sufficient warrant to read further in Eugenides’ oeuvre. Recommended. ( )
  RandyMetcalfe | Jul 6, 2016 |
Lilting, dreamlike writing, very good at creating a mood, but overall a little less coherent and satisfying than I would like. I suspect because it denies easy explanation, this one will be a grower... ( )
  jkdavies | Jun 14, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 177 (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.
 

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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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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 Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:13 -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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