Saturday, September 7, 2013

all that mattered was that we had loved the girls, and that they hadn't heard us calling.

I have never read The Virgin Suicides the way I did today, with death on the brain. Not my own, but just the general concept. (Note: try not to think about it. It hurts.) It made the entire book, especially the ending, mean something new to me. Something darker than I ever recognized it to be. 

Reading this blog is probably the best thing anyone can do after reading this book, whether it is for the first time or the tenth. It makes you think, even if you don't want to think, even if you just want to sit and let the sadness wash over your body in a slow wave. 

The part of Mary (she put her head in the oven after she heard Bonnie kick the trunk out from underneath herself in the basement) made me feel so heavy. The part of kicking the trunk made me feel this way especially, but just everything about Mary (you'll know what I mean if you read or have read the book) and her aftermath just made me hurt for her. It made me hurt for everyone in the book. I still feel this way, even if the initial sting of the events has worn off. 

I don't think we-the readers, the boys in the book who were so infatuated with the Lisbon girls in the books, etc.-will ever really understand the girls. There is a section about this in the book towards the end with one of the characters, Mr. Buell, who the boys interviewed about the Lisbon girls, saying "All wisdom ends in paradox." We are with the girls towards the end of their short lives, as they deteriorate, but our collecting of bits of their lives-Cecilia's yellowed high tops, vacation photos, and so on-will not guarantee answers, only more confusion; this is one of the only facts that comes attached to The Virgin Suicides, one of the only things we will ever be sure of about the girls. 

                                                                                                                         Yours truly, 


  1. I love The Virgin Suicides-I do I REALLY love The Virgin Suicides- but sometimes I can't help but wonder is it in a way glorifying suicide and romanticizing loss? It's the most beautiful and poignant book, and the movie equally so, but when I think about what it's really about I get slightly horrified! Also, great post xxx

    1. I know what you mean! I do think that a large part of the book was devoted to the glorification of loss and death, which is why I felt so motivated to write this post. I realized that so many people romanticize this book/movie without fully recognizing the rawness.