Chapter Fifteen: The Lovely Bones Analysis

As before, crazily analysed quotes from Sebold’s The Lovely Bones. I apologise in advance for the essay…

~The Analysis (15)~

  • 188 “Getting caught became another moment of his life that brought fear- that sick feeling…like eggs being folded in a bowl”- here it is noticeable the reference to casual domestic life when in contrast to the seriousness of the subject. Perhaps this quote gives reason for Harvey’s skill of covering the evidence of his murders- he had done it form a child- out of force, sense of duty to his mother, not choice.
  • “You have to be able to look passed the dead’ his mother said” – as if nothing of his personality we know of as evil and unjust in the book was his choice. He was (and still is) solely a little boy obeying the desires of his equally as lost mother. “Sometimes there are good trinkets to take away from them”- he followed this instruction also.
  • 189 “Do you want the eye or the heart”? … The eye” – Harvey choose to keep the trinket of the eye over the heart- perhaps symbolises his insecurity- an ‘eye’ represents nerves, as if he was constantly on the look out, constantly aware- he had no capacity for love.
  • 190 “he had a moment of clarity about how life should be lived: not as a child nor as a woman. They were to two worst things to be” – as if killing made him either a man or  a boy- it was the only way he knew to avoid becoming a woman or a child (perhaps symbolic of weakness?). Or perhaps he will trying to rid the world pf what he thought were ‘the worst things to be’. Making the world a ‘cleaner, nicer place’.
  • “Take action only after calculating the worst possible outcome” 190- Harvey was the best practised criminal in every way- it was how he had been brought up- the only way he knew to live.
  • 192 “evidence of what they look to be extreme loneliness and a room full of beautiful dolls houses”- the fact they found evidence of his loneliness suggests the extent of it…this makes it seem strange that he could so willingly kill those he brought home, rather then embrace the company he do desperately needed. The significance of the dolls houses: just like a dolls house represents an individual life, he could be building all the lives he could have had, all the families he has lost, keeping them with him, if not in reality.
  • 195 Len taking Abigail to the “filtration system or the water plumbing plant”- all of their encounters have been based around the site of something functional- a filtration system, a fan- perhaps suggesting that their embraces are also only functional- they serve a purpose just s the fan or the system- to help Abigail forget.
  • 195 “I could drown in those eyes Abigail” – again, recurring motif of water, waves, the ocean, drowning. As if the inside of her was so vast and unreachable- the more you spent time with her, the less you understood.
  • 196 “the foreign territory enough to soothe her” “feeling of being unreachable”- she wanted nothing more than to be someone she never had- she is finally achieving her desires of freedom- juxtaposition shows her sorry state of mind, she finds comfort in loosing herself.
  • “My mother had my body as it would never become” – clarity and reemphasis on the fact that Susie will never grow up.


 

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