The Turndog Review: The Virgin Suicides





Hello there and welcome to The Turndog Review: the books I read, reviewed.

I aren’t a professional critic, instead all I offer is my honest opinion into everything I read. However, I do this with a difference, as I don’t only offer my personal views on the Writing, Plot, and Story, but also the Book Cover, Book Marketing, and Author Website.

We live in a modern world where being a writer is different to years gone by, and I feel the whole experience of the book matters. This covers everything from the initial find, the actual read, and everything that follows. Therefore I hope this review not only offers a great insight into the book and author, but also into my own mind and what makes me tick.

So without further ado let’s begin, and today I focus on The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides


Published: 1993

Read: October 2012

Discovered: As part of my coming-of-age binge



The Virgin Suicides has been on my to-read list for a while. I’ve heard great things and couldn’t wait to unearth this potentially life-changing novel. Overall, I wasn’t disappointed.

It didn’t have the overwhelming power of some books, but boy is it good. The writing is superb and your tongue and ears are taken on a sublime ride. Frankly my dear, it’s hard to not fall in love with the flow.

It follows five sisters in the eyes of a teenage boy who lives across the street. They are all going through the tough trauma of being a teenager, but the girls are dealing with it worse than most.

When the youngest, Cecelia, commits suicide, it has a lasting effect on the other girls, their parents, and the neighbourhood in general.  The road they take gets bumpy, and in the end they follow their sister into the dark.

Overall, this is a book that, although dark and daunting, is so very real. The writing’s beautiful, the flow superb, and the characters dark and penetrating.


The Good:

The writing is incredible and touches your soul. It burrows deep down and leaves a mark, and other books will struggle to live up to the splendour of the words.

I also love the POV. It’s so distant, yet at the same time, perfectly close and offers a point of view that no other could. It gives so little away but tells you everything you need. Very clever indeed.


The Bad:

I suppose it drains on from time to time and wanders off on a tangent. Then again, this is literary fiction, and the use of words is part of its appeal.

It can also be tricky to follow, and despite the POV never changing, you are constantly thrown from then and now. However, this is done, for the most part, in sublime fashion. Overall, it’s tough to fault.


Book Cover:

It’s a pretty cool cover without blowing me away. I can’t say it would stop me dead in my tracks, but it does represent the story well.

It also showcases the author in excellent fashion, which shows he stands tall in a world filled with many options. This, I suppose, is the ultimate dream.




Book Marketing:

I read the paperback version and there is none to be seen. I have a feeling this is down to the fact that it’s a new edition and the publisher probably likes to keep the page count to a minimum.

Seriously, there is zero info other than the book itself. Understandable? Maybe. Disappointing? Heck yeah!


Author Website & Engagement:

There’s plenty of info about the author, and I’m sure he does his fair share in the ‘real world’. However, his time online is minimal, and although this is a little disheartening, it’s understandable.

He’s a writer from another time, so can we expect him to be on Twitter and Blogging every day? Probably not, although it’d still be nice to see a website where the reader can go to learn more and engage.


Overall, this is a superb book that lived up to its rather high standards. It’s very dark and slightly depressing, but I don’t mind this one bit.

Although the marketing and engagement of the author is poor, I’m happy to overlook this as the book itself suites this kind approach. It’s indie, alternative, and a little grungy. For this, I offer The Virgin Suicides…

5 Turndogs out of 5



Thanks for reading this version of The Turndog Review. I review every book I read, not only for the writing, but the marketing, website, and general communication from the author.

Turndog Millionaire – @turndog_million

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