Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides

The Virgin Suicides (original 1993; edition 1994)

by Jeffrey Eugenides

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
9,497186306 (3.8)1 / 315
Title:The Virgin Suicides
Authors:Jeffrey Eugenides
Info:Grand Central Publishing (1994), Paperback, 256 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:death, suicide, american, mi, 1970's, fiction, pb, mooched, outstanding

Work details

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides (1993)

  1. 72
    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. 40
    The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (readerbabe1984, rosylibrarian)
  3. 20
    White Oleander by Janet Fitch (rosylibrarian)
  4. 10
    See How Small by Scott Blackwood (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  5. 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)
  6. 00
    The Fates Will Find Their Way by Hannah Pittard (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  7. 00
    A Crime in the Neighborhood by Suzanne Berne (si)
  8. 00
    Practical Jean: A Novel (P.S.) by Trevor Cole (BookshelfMonstrosity)
  9. 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.
  10. 00
    Quiet Chaos by Sandro Veronesi (bookmomo)
    bookmomo: Both original and intriguing stories about loss and grieving.
  11. 00
    Paint It Black by Janet Fitch (jbarry)
  12. 00
    Whores on the Hill: A Novel by Colleen Curran (jbarry)
  13. 00
    Liars and Saints by Maile Meloy (freddlerabbit)
    freddlerabbit: The styles and narrative perspectives of these two books remind me strongly of one another.
  14. 12
    We Were the Mulvaneys by Joyce Carol Oates (ainsleytewce)

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

English (174)  Dutch (5)  Italian (1)  German (1)  Finnish (1)  Norwegian (1)  Spanish (1)  All languages (184)
Showing 1-5 of 174 (next | show all)
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 |
First of all, I gotta say I really loved this book. It’s one of those books that I wasn’t entirely sure I was enjoying or understanding while I was reading it, and I found it aggravating at times, but it still has me thinking about it a week after I finished it.

Full review → Joie des Livres ( )
  joiedeslivres | Apr 12, 2016 |
Having seen the movie already, I was thrilled at how much more depth and breadth of plot, character development, and beauty was in these pages. ( )
  BooksForYears | Apr 1, 2016 |
This book was well written, no doubt about that. For me, this book belongs to a genre that's one of a kind, where the goal isn't to solve anything - it's to tell a story. It reminds me of the "Submarine" movie I recently watched. Anyway, it wasn't bad but it just wasn't exactly my type of book. I never really got hooked, and yes, there were moments when I felt a bit more drawn to it but overall it was more of a 'passing through' than anything. ( )
  zombiehero | Mar 25, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 174 (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
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
For Gus and Wanda
First words
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.
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.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
Haiku summary

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

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
42 avail.
719 wanted
3 pay7 pay

Popular covers


Average: (3.8)
0.5 4
1 46
1.5 16
2 189
2.5 53
3 603
3.5 188
4 1065
4.5 116
5 695


2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

See editions

Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

» Publisher information page

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Store | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 107,478,769 books! | Top bar: Always visible