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Chapter Nineteen: The Lovely Bones Analysis

More analysis, more words, more essay-like explanations…read on!

~The Analysis (19)~

  • “…her morning ritual of an early coffee drunk while staring out at the grape vines grafted row upon row of sturdy white crosses”- tranquil tone, as if this is what Abigail had always wanted and now she has it. Juxtaposes the later mental state of Abigail when she receives the call on the next page. 262
  • “she repeated the strange words: husband, heart attack”- the alliteration when said allowed by the reader also sounds like a whisper with the sound of the ‘h’ flowing past the reader’s lips. Mimics the hushed tone of shock within the situation- emphasises the fragility and Abigail’s mind and her state of bewilderment. 263
  • 264 “…which made her blue eyes seem even bluer in contrast”- as if the ‘ocean’ within her eyes was intensifying- as if she was even more lost than before. Shows how her greed for freedom only led to more loss and confusion. Reference to ‘pony tai’ instead of Sebold referencing solely her hair ‘tied back at the base of her head’ emphasises how Abigail has been in a youthful state- she has had few responsibilities and now she has been landed back with them.
  • “…like the ubiquitous photo of a celebrity”- referencing Susie’s photograph- as if death made a person a celebrity. Susie achieved what everyone else didn’t want- everyone else (Abigail, Ruth, wanted anonymity- Susie had no choice- she is famous.)
  • “I barely managed a close-lipped grin”- devastating tone- she fact she was so self conscious and missed her last chance to leave her mother with the smile she so desperately loved. Also saddening to reference her self-consciousness considering the indecent way she died. 265
  • 266 “But though she was, by definition a mother…”- shows what Abigail had tried to escape from- the idea that her meaning and purpose in life was orientated around the presence of her children.
  • “She had been punished in the most horrible and unimaginable way for never wanting to have me” 266- brutal tone as if she almost deserved what she had coming, hint of religion
  • “…suspended and immobile for the first few moments”- links to idea of fantasy- freezing time, impossibility
  • “mom…..it tasted soapy and foreign in her mouth”- ‘soapy’ signifies an unpleasant taste, something that shouldn’t be there- signifies that to Lindsey in that moment, her mother seemed out of place, just as Abigail had felt all those years before. 267
  • 268 “Being who she was- whoever that was”- shows how her desire to be free of motherhood and for escape only ended in her loosing herself completely.
  • “Like a rat bulging, undigested, inside a snake: the secret of Len”- significance of snakes symbolising danger and threat, the rat being the prey for the predator, the vulnerable innocent target. Threat references the danger of destruction to the Salmon family, they were the target, the prey for Abigail’s predation of Len.
  • “Full of hate and  tension- a riptide of blood to swim through”- reference to water and waves- however this time is doesn’t symbolise freedom or loss, it symbolises the sheer scale of hatred Abigail must fight. An ocean of blood which she must ‘swim’ through- she must cut through the pain she has caused.
  • “Underground storage room of hate…heart to stone heart to stone”- recurring motif of the heart and the stone. Fragility of Buckley’s emotions, partial death of emotions.
  • “…she placed it between her powder and comb” (referencing the note about Len’s pending arrival)- relevance of the make-up- perhaps referencing appearances, the fact that Abigail had tried to cover up her relationship with Len but people found out- in a similar way that people try to cover their flaws with makeup but it can easily be taken off.


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Chapter Eighteen: The Lovely Bones Analysis

As with the last chapters- more over-analysed quotes from Sebold’s The Lovely Bones…

~The Analysis (18)~

  • “The old woman that rented the closet liked to listen in, so Ruth tried not to talk much on the phone” 248- Idea that Ruth is trapped in the place she is supposed to feel most safe- her home in the town. Links to the idea of captivity within the rest of the novel. Lonely perception of the old woman: perhaps she felt the need to listen to Ruth talking to her father since no one ever spoke much to her, also the idea she rented her closet suggests that is all the space she had in her house for people to stay- hence presumably not many people stay with her (besides Ruth who doesn’t care where she stayed).
  • “The city had very little to do with her interior life” 249 – suggests she does most of her living on the inside- she lives through her thought and connection with the dead, hence perhaps this is why she makes ‘people nervous’ on the outside- she only lives within, outside she is dead.
  • “You could see the skitter rabbit energy” 249- recurring theme of rabbits- symbolise her vulnerability- Also traditionally, rabbits are associated with fertility, sentiment, desire, and procreation- suggests her desire to be who she really wants to be (sexuality wise?) is a fire that only burns within- she prefers to keep herself to herself…yet people can see through to her soul through her eyes. “People never said anything about her eyes”- is this because they are dead (links to earlier point), or because they have a distaste for what they see?
  • Significance of dressing all in black- doesn’t state this is her uniform- coating herself in the colour of mystery and desire- what she desires to be? Mysterious and desirable?
  • Also interesting how Ruth appears to be linked to Harvey- she ‘makes people nervous’ like her does, she evokes reactions from dogs like he does…
  • “No one knew where she was at any time of the day and no one waited for her. It was an immaculate anonymity” 250 – sense of utter isolation about Ruth- it seems as though she has no one in the world that would miss her if she was to end up in the same state as Susie- yet she never becomes suicidal. Sense of strength about the character of Ruth, as if living along side the dead was giving her the strength and motivation she needed. Anonymous just like Susie’s mother desired to be- she shared links with the family without realising.
  • “Ruth knew her status as a freak at school”- stereotypical high school culture. This label utterly juxtaposes her position as a ‘celebrity’ in heaven. Almost oxymoronic.(pg 250-1). She had no friends in school (besides Ray) yet fans in heaven. Perhaps this is why she associates more with the dead, she can sense an appreciation she doesn’t get from the living.
  • 252 “her ardentness was off-putting”- the fact that people can find Ruth’s positivity conversely negative suggests he doesn’t belong among the living. The people of earth find Ruth strange, and cannot connect with her supposedly ‘human’ emotions- hence perhaps her ‘fans’ in heaven understand what the living don’t.
  • “It was better to look like you were doing something when you stared into the distance” 252- evokes a sense of similarity to Mrs Utemeyer when she was narrated to sit and stare into the distance just as Ruth desires- Utemeyer was ‘part dead’ due to her lack of a brain- perhaps Ruth is too, half dead?
  • “Her journal was her closes and most important relationship”- she can form her closes relationship with something that is not living- again links to the fact that she is not similar to the living, she connects more with the dead, and objects that cannot be classed as alive.
  • “Ruth counted the living just as much as she counted the dead”- shows she just has a natural tendency to connect with the dead, since it is not as if she devotes more time to them, they just come to her.
  • “School librarian…tall, frail woman with wiry hair”- stereotypical school librarian- fact this was Buckley’s favourite teacher shows how he is different- he is similar to Ruth, not chosen first in gym- shows how he has a connection with the dead similar to Ruth (shown when he states Susie talks to him, yet we never get clarification from Susie that she actually does this. Could someone else dead be talking to him?)
  • 254 “…when he was unable to sleep and scanning the few books on gardening that the school library kept”- shows how Buckley is wavering from the stereotypical high school boy, he is doing things not considered ‘cool’- becoming an outsider- just like Ruth and her hobbies were  not stereotypical or cool. “the few…that the library kept” shows how his desires and passions were a minority.
  • “He didn’t like what he read in books”- he has an active mind, just like Ruth when she read books- always wanting more than the pages could offer- reverting to her mind.
  • “…work shed in the garden, where he kept his tools and supplies” 254- evokes an alarming similarity to Ruth- she used to write poetry in her father’s tool shed in the garden and now Buckley is concealing his desires in a tool shed in the garden…foreboding: he will turn out just as ‘freaky’ as Ruth.
  • “The curl up like a hand unfolding”- Buckley describing his tomato plants 255- simile shows how Buckley find them welcoming- again links to Ruth- they find dead objects (or at least, in comparison to a human life- dead) in a way more welcoming than the living.
  • 257- relevant that Jack blacks out when he and Buckley are arguing over Susie? Was it her that caused the heart attack not wanting the relationship between rather and son to deteriorate in front of her eyes? Sensory language (“cold” “damp”) foreshadows the father’s collapse- almost puts the reader in the place of Susie- we know something isn’t right with him and that something will happen, yet Buckley doesn’t. Reader given insight into future just like Susie has.
  • 258 “If he died, I would have him forever” – emphasises again, as in previous chapters, how Susie has maintained her childish desires- shows how she is never growing up.
  • “We stood- the dead child and the living”- the first time Susie seems to acknowledge the fact that she is different to the living. She doesn’t say ‘two children’, she acknowledges that there is a difference between her and her sister which she has previously not done. Shows how she is almost ready to leave earth behind.
  • “air and cover ” “little boy and wounded man” – seems as if the quotation goes a lot deeper than solely speaking of their current situation. As if this is the state they shall remain in forever due to the trauma of Susie’s death- this is what they will both never grow out of. Buckley will remain a small frightened child, and Jack a ‘wounded man’.
  • 260 “I saw the brick paths advancing as I advanced” – physical impossibility- links to fantasy genre- “rending and tearing of time”- again, fantasy genre, defying the physical possibilities of time


 

Chapter Fourteen: The Lovely Bones Analysis

Same again…more  drastically (over)analysed quotes from Sebold’s The Lovely Bones…

~The Analysis (14)~

  • “Inside the green house” 174- importance of the house not being referred to as ‘Mr Harvey’s house’ but instead the ‘green’ house- as if the colour was enough to evoke a knowledge of who occupied the house. Symbolism of green:
  • Evokes a sense of nature- calming, stress-relieving. Green stands for balance, nature, spring, and rebirth. It’s the symbol of prosperity, freshness, and progress. The Green Party in the US is inextricably tied to ecological and progressive causes, and a “greenback” is another term for our paper currency. In Japanese culture, green is associated with eternal life, and it is the sacred color of Islam, representing respect and the prophet Muhammad.

  • Juxtaposes the aspects of Harvey- perhaps represents what he desires to be in a person- represents the ‘shell’ he conceals himself within- the shell of innocence and ‘freshness’, his support for ‘rebirth’ after Susie’s death. Shows what other people see when they see Harvey unaware of his murderous ways- they see him as ‘refreshingly’ different’. A ‘new type of life’.
  • 175- talk of Harvey fashioning a wife out of aspects of the dead and his mother- deeply saddening that he has to make up a life out of the dead and disappeared- It is as if the only love and company he has and will ever know is either dead, disappeared, or made up. A few lined down Susie references his “imagined family”.
  • 175 “He listened to her tell him about her cats and her brother, who had three children, whom she loved, he pictured her sitting on the chair in his basement, dead.”- Harvey interacting with an “attractive heavy woman”- juxtaposition between the innocence of the cats and the children, to the evil nature of  Harvey’s desire- dead. The fact he found her attractive and yet wants her dead suggests that is the only way he can show affection or get the company he desires. People will only spend time with him personally when they are dead.
  • 177 “The clouds hung heavy in the sky all day” – pathetic fallacy- creates a gloomy tone mirroring the mood of suspense of worry for Lindsey. Almost as if the weather was trying to help Lindsey by creating a mask from the sun- hence to keep people from wanting to go outside and seeing Lindsey.
  • 180 “She felt encased in something, a fly trapped in a spider’s funeral web”- connotation of flies: insignificant, weak, symbolism: death…etc. As if she were the fly and Harvey the spider- presents Harvey as a predator
  • 182 “together the two of us walked the stairs”- signifies Susie’s resistance to accept her dead state- she associates herself with the living
  • “Then she went into what had been our bedroom in my house, and she found my killer’s” 182 – significant- unidentified link between Harvey and Susie
  • “I had died inside that hole” 183- emphasises the lack of glamour in her death- not a desirable way to die- depressing.
  • “He heard a board creak. He stiffened” – emphasises how he is only used to the presence of the dead- he is not used to the presence of the living. It makes him anxious, uncomfortable (“stiffened”)
  • “5! 5! 5!” – Symbolism of five:
  • The Bible numerology code number 5. The number 5 in the Bible is significant because his creation, the ‘man’ has five fingers, five senses and five toes. Thus it is the number of God’s grace. There are five great mysteries: Father, Son, Spirit, Creation and Redemption.

  • Much reference to Christianity in the book- strange considering Sebold herself is not religious.
  • “I have shopping to do,  a bird to cook. No one seems to realise that we have a family. we have a family, a family and a son, and I’m going”- strange reaction to potential partial solution to death of daughter- mention of monotony, chores 185
  • “But selfishly, the loss of her on earth to me”- emphasises Susie’s everlasting youth- she will never grow up like everyone else is.
  • “paper dissolved in my hand” 185 – breach of physical reality- links to fantasy theme
  • “she was small for her age, as she had been on earth, and she”…repetition of ‘she’ emphasises her lack of identity- she is just ‘another dead girl’ 186
  • “Because horror on earth is real and it is everyday. It is a flower or like the in”- interesting the juxtaposition between the positivity and life of the sun and flowers and ‘horror’. Element of power about horror, yet suggests it can be power for life. A strength.


 

Chapter Thirteen: The Lovely Bones Analysis

It’s in the title really- more elaborate and some rather metaphorically and emotionally ‘deep’ interpretations…

~The Analysis (13)~

  • •”The rumours…wove in and out of the student’s lockers like the most persistent of snakes” 156– reference to ‘snakes’ could simply be referring to the evil connotations of the animal, emphasising on a basic level the evil nature of the rumours compared to the innocence of Lindsey (and supposedly her father)- links to genre of fantasy (good vs evil). Snakes also have reference to Christianity in the Garden of Eden, from which the connotations of evilness and chaos are evoked:
  • The interplay between the serpent and Eve in the Garden of Eden counts among the best-known examples of snakes as symbols of temptation. In this example, the snake’s cunning entices Eve to eat the forbidden fruit, unleashing sin and chaos into the world. However, this imagery is not limited to only the Christian Bible. Snakes in Mesopotamian and Egyptian cultures also symbolized chaos.

  • Snakes also refer to a sense of threat, hence it could be symbolising the threat these rumours pose to Lindsey’s otherwise calm exterior (managed through her emotionless outlook)- and hence the temptation to do what she feels she shouldn’t (link to garden of Eden) and loose control. Lockers also symbolise secrecy, as if the threats are threatening Lindsey’s secrecy, the fact that she really is not fine at all.
  • “using my father’s debasement as a varnish of cool they could coat themselves with” – links to idea throughout novel of wanting to be someone other than that who you are (e.g. Abigail wants to be free of motherhood, Len wants to be free of responsibilities & guilt)- Clarissa and Brian want to be cooler than they are accepted to be. Verb “Varnish” links to desire to conceal what is not desirable.
  • “everyone I’d known was growing up”- links to novel’s genre as Bildungsroman, sad truth that she will never grow up.
  • 157 “Buckley went…to borrow in the empty cave of my father’s heart”- caves connote mystery, safety, sanctuary- otherwise a cave symbolises something cold and unfeeling, juxtaposing the feeling one would expect a man to have who has children- could suggest how Jack also has the desire to be someone other than the warm and feeling father he is supped to
  • 158 “Which she washed. Which she folded. Which she ironed…” repetition of ‘which she’ emphasises the monotony of the mother’s life. Seeks to explain to the reader why she despises it so much, desires freedom. Elaborated on by sentence following it saturated with connectives, both complex and a compound sentence- elongates the everlasting, tedious impression of life for Abigail. Makes reader empathise with her rather than hate her when she thinks of Len three lines below.
  • “How odd he might look to an outsider or to my mother” 158 – suggestion of linking Abigail to an outsider, almost defining her as an outsider by placing the noun ‘mother’ after outsider- possible to trace Jack’s thought process: from outsider, to his wife
  • “they wanted him to shut all signs of his grief away, place it in a file somewhere and tuck it in a drawer, so that no one would be asked to open it again” 159- irony of making an abstract noun seem tangible (goes against the definition), emphasises extent of Jack’s grief- it had almost compounded into a physical object
  • 160 “How to swim back to her…she was pulling and pulling away” – recurring motif of the sea, and the movement of sides- ‘pulling and pulling away’ makes Abigail seem like an anchored boat- wanting to drift away but not being able to- tugging on the string that ties her to the ground. As if their whole world was underwater- suffocating.
  • 160 “If my father fell, only a dog and a boy who loved him would see” – we see the other side to Jack, less of the masculine, family supporting figure and more of the vulnerable, scared man he really is.
  • 161 (another rendition of Abigail’s monotonous life) “the towels my mother bleached, the towels my mother hung…the towels she folded”- sense of insignificance about the mother’s life- it is one string of folding towels
  • 162 “Abigail should be doing this” (with regards to fetching things for Lindsey helping her shave her legs”- Stereotypical and unjustified
  • 163 “A fine trickle of blood beginning to spread into the white foam” contrast between blood red and white links to the description of Susie’s skin ‘that had never seen the sun’ and the blood that spilled from her with Harvey’s knife- blood is wholly symbolic
  • 165 “my corpse cut up,  my blank rotting eyes” – gruesome imagery, gothic tone within the novel
  • “The anchor houses…because the anchored the neighbourhood to an original road” 168/9- sense of belonging, sense of a base, a foundation on which to build lives
  • “do you know how alone I have always felt…my mother asked her mother”- the juxtaposition between the formality of the nomination “mother” and the hint of personal revelation in the subject- shows that things are changing, they are growing just like everyone else.
  • “She had never understood places like this- places where her own child had chosen to live” (With reference to living in houses ‘identical in structure’ to another- emphasises how Lynn views being different as a way of life, the prospect of being similar to another person is unrecognisable to her, in-understandable. 170
  • “I’m not involved with anyone. Her mind flew like a bird from one rooftop to the next”- The simile symbolises freedom, like with Len she had she freedom she always desired outside of her role in motherhood- she can finally be free of responsibility and judgement. Proven by “The pragmatic, prim mistress that my mother had always been had gone”
  • “Fireflies gathering in a swarm above his front flower beds” 172 (regarding the signs Lynn witnessed to tell her Harvey was a killer- Fireflies symbolize guidance most obvious sign
  • “The girl was being burned alive, but first, there had been her body, clean and whole” 173 – strange that Abigail refers to this as a “wonderful dream”- as if a death doesn’t remove the fact that they existed initially- hence perhaps this is Abigail coming to accept the death of her daughter- to accept what she was before, not what she was not afterwards.


 

Chapter Twelve: The Lovely Bones Analysis

Needless to say, here are another fusillade of (over) analysed literary quotes from Sebold’s ‘The Lovely Bones’…

~ The Analysis~

  • “To run out into the cornfield where my father was, where I was, where she felt suddenly that the heart of her family had moved” pg 143 – ironic that the heart of the family had moved to the place where Susie’s heart had stopped- perhaps metaphorical for ‘the lovely bones’ (i.e. the connections that tie the family together, this is an indication that they were present from very early on in the family’s grieving)
  • “When Lindsey entered; it was just my father and me” pg 144 – reveals how Susie had not let go of the living world, in fact she still classed her self as part of it, on-par with her living father- as if she was with him in the same (living) state that he was.
  • “the living can go on to other things” “what about the dead… where do we go”? pg 145- emphasises Susie’s childish selfishness- she cares for the living but more so and firstly about herself. Represents the harsh reality that Susie will never grow up, she will remain in this state whilst the rest of the characters continue to progress (Bildungsroman novel)
  • “…Len said, smiling guiltily” pg 146- the juxtaposition between the ‘smiling’ (connoting happiness and freedom of spirit) and Len’s ‘guilt’ (suggesting lack of ease and discomfort) evoke a sense of duality about Len- as if he is trapped in the world of innocence in his life as a cop yet desires the freedom to rebel and be naughty. This is similar to Abigail who almost regrets entering the responsibility of motherhood and herself seeks rebellion.
  • “A strange smile came across my mothers face” pg 147- the sibilance of the ‘strange smile’ is snake-like, perhaps signifying that the idea a mother likes the sound of her daughter’s murder was almost so strange it was threatening. The exhalation of the reader when pronouncing the letter “s” could also mimic the mother’s relief at Len’s lack of censorship over the word ‘murder’
  • “But that No because vague and cloudy, became air sucked into the intake fan of the humming hydrant” pg 148 – alliteration of “h” makes the reader exhale when reading as if to mimic the sound of the fan beside the characters- evokes a sense of environment for readers.
  • “149 “bath time, she sang” – until the end of the page it is notable how happy Abigail seems to be in motherhood, juxtaposing her otherwise regretful self- this could show the progression of Abigail’s attitude to motherhood (her love for it lessened with the aging of her girls), or alternatively perhaps she always felt the same element of regret for her former life but simply was always good at hiding it. “Reached her in waves” – emphasises the fluctuating levels at which she grieved for her former self- not always the same.
  • 150 “I can go back to these moments, like them again…”- ironic since she can never relive a moment, only replay it- emphases how she refused to let go of the living world.
  • “she doled out my clothes piecemeal, not wanting to pressure me” 150 – as if mother and daughter had all the time in the world- when in fact this time was soon to end.
  • “Once my mother was launched I could take advantage of it” pg 151- verb “launched” makes it sound as if Abigail were a computer program, emphasising how her actions were automatic, not considered, forced and not felt.
  • “my mysterious mother” 151 – alliteration, monosyllabic lexis – the repetition of the soft “m” sound could represent how Susie could sense an ongoing difference in her mother, the trait she called ‘mysterious’. Long “m” sound acts to lengthen the otherwise snappy pace created by the monosyllabic lexis, to emphasise how Susie found this mother intriguing.
  • “For both of us, it was about getting lost” 151- idea the child and the mother can both be lost inside their relationships- emphasises how perhaps they never really knew each other at all.
  • “One of the storied my father read to us, and that all of us were on the ocean “…- here we find the recurring theme and motif of the ocean and waves to represent the vast span of mystery within the family, the distance that parts them but also the fact they share in underlying common ground- metaphorically the ‘ocean’.
  • 152 “Marvellous, dangerous, wild” (Len describing Abigail” – emphasises again Len’s desire to be someone other than the PC cop he is desired to be- he is supposed to dislike danger and fear the wild, to tame it, but he finds her ‘marvellous’
  • 152 “She needed Len to drive the dead daughter out” – prominent plosive use (drive, dead, daughter”- perhaps to give the reader a sense of shock, not only was she cheating on her husband, she was also doing it to forget her dead daughter- double betrayal. Alternatively plosives could suggest her passion, the aggressive extent of her need.
  • “It was my father who grew towards us as the years went by; it was my mother that grew away” 153- almost as if the parents are doing the development and the growth of the children- role reversal- their lives have literally been turned upside down by Harvey, the dynamics of their relationship destroyed.
  • “Deaths seemed choreographed” 154- as if the deaths were planned and coordinated, foreseen- hence death is unavoidable- just like if you have been involved in a move in a choreographed dance, when that move comes you are compelled to do it, hence when it is your ‘dance’ of death, it is your turn to complete this also. Makes dying seem more harmonious, almost desirable- you want to be part of the choreography of life.
  • 155 The soles are “like snowflakes”
  • 155 “None of them the same…exactly like the one before”- sparks a mental link to the killings of Harvey- all the girls he have killed are individuals, yet they all share similar traits, all finished in an ungraceful, undignified way.

 

Chapter Eleven: The Lovely Bones Analysis

More perceptive (or quite frankly overly-perceptive, if that is a trait in existence…) interpretations and analysis on Sebold’s THE LOVELY BONES: Chapter 11.



~Chapter 11~ The analysis:

  • Pg 126 “My brother was like a rock with a sheet pulled over him” – evokes thoughts of connotation of the dead via the reference to the noun “rock” signifying a cold, emotionless state (like one who is dead)- the sheet pulled across his body also mimic the process of concealing he body of those who have recently died (as seen in hospital dramas for example). Luring the reader into feeling a sense of sorrow for Buckley, or worry that he may be next to join Susie.
  • “My father marvelled at what a sound sleeper he was- just like me” – dark irony, since the dead are often referred to as‘sleeping’, linking Buckley to the state of Susie may be designed to scare the reader and evoke a sense of fear and vulnerability for him. “Even banging pot lids to see if he would wake up” – emphasises the dormant impression of Buckley, alsmost seems dead himself. This implication of danger for Buckley is confirmed within the next few lines “my father checked him, just to make sure” pg 126
  • “He would find clues…in the green paint coating the shingles, or along the driveway, where two large stones sat, painted white” – repetitive reference and emphasise on the painted nature of the stones lining the outside of Harvey’s house- emphasises a sense of concealment: the paint conceals the surface of the stone just as Harvey’s innocence conceals his guilt. Significance of the emphasise on the white stones:
  • In colour psychology white is the colour of new beginnings, wiping the slate clean, so to speak. It is the blank canvas waiting to be written upon. While white isn’t stimulating to the senses, it opens the way for the creation of anything the mind can conceive.

  • Hence from this it is could be considered this is almost inviting Jack to ‘fill in the blanks’, as if inside the house were the answers to tarnish and taint the purity Harvey projects.
  • “I loved the idea that there could be trees in the yard taller and stronger than people” 128 – sense of need for protection, concealment- a barrier to the outside world? Taller could represent her desire for authority and ‘stronger’ her desire for physical or mental strength or ability
  • “I had made a warm spot on the floor of the garage until I cooled” 128 – horrific imagery, uncomfortable to read- culinary connotations- reference to warmth and cooling as if Susie was Harvey’s prey, waiting for her to reach a desirable temperature. Ungraceful, uncomfortable- emphasises tragedy- young girls would want to die gracefully and loved, yet Susie is in a sack in a garage and alone, cooling quietly.
  • Repetition of finite verb “Knew” – “I knew the floor plan” “I knew the bathroom” “Knew how in my house…”- sense of subjectivity: did she know because of the mirrored nature of their houses, hence was this foreboding her destiny- the fact that she was born and grew up in that same house, and it was in an almost identical one next door that she died.
  • “Porcelain was yellow and the tile on the floor was green” 128- odd combination- emphasises eccentric nature
  • “Doll’s houses” – interesting connotations: Note that the doll house is “perfect”. All the walls are papered, there is carpet (represents the perfect childhood Harey never had), but the dolls in the house, the people, are “stiff” — they don’t seem to belong there- they are unable to enjoy the luxury right before them (sense of missed opportunities, outsiders in luxury, insecurity).
  • “Not to alter his pattern…set several clocks…when to open the blinds…when to close them…turn lights on…off…” “He kept things to count, and this counting reassured him” 128 – sense of necessity for structure juxtaposes his spontaneous un-structured childhood- or sense of autism- as if everything had to be exact- need for repetition and hatred for change
  • “He would count them like beads on a rosary” – significance of rosary beads, what are they: (129)
  • Prayer beads, sometimes called rosary beads, are used in the practice of meditation and prayer.

  • The meaning of the Rosary is simply a Catholic prayer based upon the Bible that focuses on the events in the life of Jesus and that of Mary the Mother of Jesus.

  • Emphasises how he felt a sense of tranquillity and calmness from his killings. Juxtaposition to Christianity shows that perhaps Harvey didn’t know what he was doing was wrong
  • “He liked to hold the leather heel and rub it between his thumb and forefinger- a perfect worry stone” – Definition of a worry stone: Worry stones (palm stones, thumb stones) are smooth, polished gemstones, usually in the shape of an oval with a thumb-sized indentation, used for relaxation or anxiety relief. They are used by holding the stone between the index finger and thumb and gently moving one’s thumb back and forth across the stone. Juxtaposed in every way to show how Harvey in himself was almost the complete opposite of the rest of society – rubber is unpolished, it is tarnished, not gem-stone like
  • 131 “He had killed animals, taking lesser lives…” – links to the Christian belief: Early Christians regarded human beings as greatly superior to all other animals. After all, human beings were made in the image of God, and God chose human form for his earthly life. Furthermore, God clearly decreed that human beings should have power over non-human animals. LINKS TO CONTEXT Christianity is the most adhered to religion in the United States, with 70% of polled American adults identifying themselves as Christian in 2014.
  • 131- “the dog wouldn’t judge from the spot” Juxtaposes symbolism of a dog: In Asian wisdom dogs are symbols of: Good Luck, Loyalty, Obedience and Prosperity. – shows how something was seriously wrong.
  • 135 “My father was slowly fitting something together…….it was in my mothers eyes”- juxtaposition between the vast and in-understandable connotations of the ‘ocean’ within Abigail’s eyes and the knowledge Jack has gained from them- suggests a sense of closeness in their relationship, ironic since the sitation is geared around her closeness with Len.
  • Recurring motif of candle- particularly 136- religious symbolism:
    The candle symbolizes light in the darkness of life especially individual life, illlumination; it is the symbol of holy illumination of the spirit of truth. Lit in times of death, they signify the light in the next world, and they represent Christ as the light.- represents how the truth was right beside him (Harvey)
  • Significance of Susie : “I blew that lonely, flickering candle out”- after her annoyance at not being able to help her father, not being able to cast clues- as if she had given up on the hope of being found, she was extinguishing the spirit of truth.


 

(Partly) D.I.Y Gift Ideas For Under $5…

So clearly you’re a cheapskate…otherwise why are you reading this post? But that’s okay, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with being a cheapskate (apart from the fact you clearly don’t appreciate your friend/ family/ gift receiver (joke-sorry)).

But anyway you’re here, you’re (not) a cheapskate, so lets go…


(1) Gift idea uno: ARROW BOOKMARKS (from lolly sticks)

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Because everyone reads…right? *Looks at self in realisation* Oh.


(2) ‘EMBELLISHED’ OREOS

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This may be a serious case of ‘good picture, nice try‘, but hey…Oreos are currently on offer in Tesco…

…I said OREOS ARE ON OFFER IN TESCO. Thank you. Lord, I sound like one of those tannoy speaker people.


(3) STARBUCKS LATTE SOAP

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For all those so called ‘white girls‘ of the world. Racist if you ask me. But it’s Starbucks, so, do it.


(4)HOME-MADE BUBBLE BATH (ft. printable label-shh)

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So strip a wine bottle and shove a cork in it…literally. Choose your label here.


(5) LIP BALM LOCKETS

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Looks like a ketchup to me…anyone else? Find out how to make a ketchup locket here.


(6)WATERCOLOUR PORTRAITS 

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Okay so perhaps not for your boyfriend or best mate. That’s weird. But image the look on your grandad’s face when he finds a distorted alien-type figure vaguely resembling a human in his stocking. Its easier than you think. It’s here.


(7) BATH BOMBS IN A JAR 

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Looks like half eaten cupcakes to me. Link’s here.


(8)CRAYON CANDLE

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Okay. Being real: what is the chance that ever layer will be a PERFECT straight line. *Sighs*. Directions here.


(9)BASEBALL BRACELET 

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If you happen to have a spare baseball…(which I don’t. DAMN IT.) Find out how- here.


…And finally…(10) CUSTOM COLOURED ‘CANDY’

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Half of these creations look mouldy. I suppose that’s the style? It’s here.


And we’re done! “The 10 step guide to (not) being a cheapskate“.

No but really, there is nothing wrong with wanting value for money…or in this case just value…you’re not really spending any money (but they don’t know that).

I hope you, my (non-existant) millions of fellow followers,  found some satisfaction in reading this blog…and maybe even saved a pound or so in the process!

Sx