The Lovely Bones
Little, Brown and Company / 2006-09-01出版
简介

the lovely bone:让你读后久久不能释怀却又心生希望的小说、一桩悬疑惊惧的人间悲剧,一个风趣温馨的心灵疗愈故事

此书在《纽约时报》排行榜上高居榜首近三十周,连续在榜七十余周。两年来畅销不衰。被美国“每月读书会”选为推荐书。并获“美国年度最佳小说”奖,入选“英国年度好书大奖”。在法国《读书》杂志评出的“2003年二十本量佳图书”中名列第二。目前读书以英、法、日、中等多种版本风靡各国,销量已突破五百万册,由此书改编的电影亦将由《指环王》导演彼特·杰克逊执导。

《可爱的骨头》故事是阴郁的,它描述了一个十多岁少女被强奸谋杀后的思维。叙事者是死者本人,小说第一句话是:“1993年12月6日,我被谋害时不过14岁。”主角讲述了她的被害对家庭的影响、警局的调查以及她进入天堂后的情况。作者以14岁女孩苏茜的眼光自天堂向下俯视,像“一条在天空浮沉的鱼”来观察她离开的世界。当然,见到的不是她乐意看到的景象:母亲对她的死悲痛不已;父亲殴打她的女友克拉莉莎,认为女儿的死是她的过失。而真正的凶手是邻居恶少哈维,可警局追捕不力,让他脱逃,苏茜在天堂里跟随观察着他的行踪。苏茜在人间还有好友露丝和一个弟弟,苏茜的灵魂不断在他们面前出现。好友露丝则对她始终不忘,长大后一心一意要当罪案审判的见证人。作者最后用苏茜的口吻向他们告别:“我祝你们都快乐长寿。”故事并不着重于描写激起强烈情感的奸杀案,而重在表现受害者的内心思维。

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一个十四岁的女孩遭一名连环杀人的歹徒奸杀并碎尸,这样一桩案件如果见诸美国媒体,或许已然引不起耸人听闻的效果。若是以之为素材敷衍成一部小说,可能会是一个以情节取胜的警探侦破故事。但女作家艾丽斯?西伯德却独辟蹊径,倾注了诚挚的深情,抒发出一曲催人泪下的亲情之歌。

作为父母爱情首次结晶的苏茜,天资虽不如妹妹琳茜聪慧,却是一个乖女孩。她帮爸爸业余做玻璃瓶中的帆船工艺品,从中体会到父亲对祖父的怀念;在为妈妈拍摄瞬间快照时,理解了妈妈受过高等教育却不得不充当家庭主妇的郁闷心情;她与小她一岁的妹妹有着难分难舍的手足之情;在小弟巴克利病危之时,挺身而出送他到医院急救;她甚至能和嗜酒贪杯、性情有些浮华的外婆做知心的交流。
  
但就是这样一个可爱的小女孩却横遭歹徒蹂躏,死后还被肢解,只有一截臂肘被人们发现。
  
沙蒙一家遭此惨祸,立即就崩溃了。父亲杰克精神恍惚,屡为警方提供可疑线索遭拒之后,在一次夜间去捉嫌犯时被误伤致残;母亲艾比盖尔无法忍受失女之痛,竟和探长苟且,然后离家出走;妹妹在哀伤之中一夜成人,不顾性命之忧去凶犯家窃取证据;年仅四岁的小弟在得知长姐已死之后,成长中心灵受到创伤;外婆义无反顾地来女婿家操持家务,以她的乐观豁达为这个家庭注入活力。而街坊四邻和学校师生更是自发地组织了一个追思仪式,大家悼念亡者,更为了安慰亲人。
  
在将近十年的时间里,苏茜原先的同学先后从大学毕业,走上各自的生活道路。连她的家人似乎也淡忘了家中失去的这名成员,尽管由于她的遭难给家庭带来的不幸和悲哀始终笼罩着全家,挥之不去。……父亲一次突发心脏病,母亲闻讯匆匆赶回,与家人相见难免一番尴尬;父亲从医院回到家中,全家人再次团聚。在一旁偷看的苏茜的魂灵,这时意识到:一个家庭,犹如人的周身骨骼,即使有一块破损了,缺失了,但骨架终会长全,作为缺损部分的她,固然依恋这个家庭,大家也都在忆念中感到遗憾,但全家经历了这场灾难与悲痛之后,终于融溶和合。《可爱的骨头》的书名,点出的正是这一主题。
  
或许是有感于当前美国的家庭危机,近年来颇有些美国作家致力于家庭题材的小说创作,不过多以青年和中年的婚恋为骨干故事,因此更像是言情小说。



When we first meet Susie Salmon, she is already in heaven. As she looks down from this strange new place, she tells us, in the fresh and spirited voice of a fourteen-year-old girl, a tale that is both haunting and full of hope. In the weeks following her death, Susie watches life on Earth continuing without her-her school friends trading rumors about her disappearance, her family holding out hope that she'll be found, her killer trying to cover his tracks. As months pass without leads, Susie sees her parents' marriage being contorted by loss, her sister hardening herself in an effort to stay strong, and her little brother trying to grasp the meaning of the word gone. And she explores the place called heaven. It looks a lot like her school playground, with the good kind of swing sets. There are counselors to help newcomers adjust and friends to room with. Everything she ever wanted appears as soon as she thinks of it-except the thing she most wants: to be back with the people she loved on Earth. With compassion, longing, and a growing understanding, Susie sees her loved ones pass through grief and begin to mend. Her father embarks on a risky quest to ensnare her killer. Her sister undertakes a feat of remarkable daring. And the boy Susie cared for moves on, only to find himself at the center of a miraculous event. The Lovely Bones is luminous and astonishing, a novel that builds out of grief the most hopeful of stories. In the hands of a brilliant new writer, this story of the worst thing a family can face is transformed into a suspenseful and even funny novel about love, memory, joy, heaven, and healing.


This edition of the New York Times best-seller and a Good Morning America "Read This" Book Club pick contains features available only in the electronic version! Included in this eBook edition are a Reading Group Guide, an exclusive interview with the author, and "The Oddity of Suburbia," Alice Sebold's comments on growing up in the suburbs of "Nowhere U.S.A." When we first meet 14-year-old Susie Salmon, she is already in heaven. This was before milk carton photos and public service announcements, she tells us; back in 1973, when Susie mysteriously disappeared, people still believed these things didn't happen. In the sweet, untroubled voice of a precocious teenage girl, Susie relates the awful events of her death and her own adjustment to the strange new place she finds herself. (It looks a lot like her school playground, with the good kind of swing set.) With love, longing, and a growing understanding, Susie watches her family as they cope with their grief-her father embarks on a search for the killer, her sister undertakes a feat of amazing daring, her little brother builds a fort in her honor-and begin the difficult process of healing. In the hands of a brilliant new novelist, and through the eyes of her winning young heroine, this story of seemingly unbearable tragedy is transformed into a suspenseful, touching, even funny novel about family, memory, love, heaven, and living.


On her way home from school on a snowy December day, 14-year-old Susie Salmon is lured into a cornfield and brutally raped and murdered, the latest victim of a serial killer. The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold's haunting and heartbreaking debut novel, unfolds from heaven, where "life is a perpetual yesterday" and where Susie narrates and keeps watch over her grieving family and friends, as well as her brazen killer and the sad detective working on her case.

As Sebold fashions it, everyone has his or her own version of heaven. Susie's resembles the athletic fields and landscape of a suburban high school: a heaven of her "simplest dreams", where "there were no teachers... We never had to go inside except for art class... The boys did not pinch our backsides or tell us we smelled; our textbooks were Seventeen and Glamour and Vogue".

The Lovely Bones works as an odd yet affecting coming-of-age story. Susie struggles to accept her death while still clinging to the lost world of the living, following her family's dramas over the years. Her family disintegrates in their grief: her father becomes determined to find her killer, her mother withdraws, her little brother Buckley attempts to make sense of the new hole in his family and her younger sister Lindsey moves through the milestone events of her teenage and young adult years with Susie riding spiritual shotgun. Random acts and missed opportunities run throughout the book--Susie recalls her sole kiss with a boy on earth as "like an accident--a beautiful gasoline rainbow".

Though sentimental at times, The Lovely Bones is a moving exploration of loss and mourning that ultimately puts its faith in the living and that is made even more powerful by a cast of convincing characters. Sebold orchestrates a big finish and though things tend to wrap up a little too well for everyone in the end, one can only imagine (or hope) that heaven is indeed a place filled with such happy endings.
                         --Brad Thomas Parsons, Amazon.com


Alice Sebold is the author of the memoir Lucky. She lives in California with her husband, the writer Glen David Gold.


length: (cm)17.4            width:(cm) 11.2

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