The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides: I picked this one up because I loved Eugenides’s other book, Middlesex. It certainly doesn’t have the scope of its successor, but it was a decent read nonetheless. The story takes place in 1970s Detroit. Though its focus is the five teenage Lisbon sisters who all commit suicide in the span of one year, the actual subjects are the teenage boys in the neighborhood who are obsessed with them. The narrative is in the unexpected first person plural, which actually works quite well in this instance. I’m having trouble summing up my thoughts; the story was interesting but didn’t really go anywhere. You only get to know the characters – even the boys – on the surface, never delving more deeply into motivation or real emotion. It’s a sad tale, and I enjoyed it on that level, but at the end I felt the same as at the beginning: a little puzzled, a little sad, a little apathetic.

Also posted on BookCrossing.

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