Esther Greenwood wants to die. But that's only about halfway through the story. In the beginning she is a person who is satisfied and confused both. And it is Sylvia Plath's life story.The Bell Jar is a beautifully layered and written book about depression--but one that doesn't start with a depressive mood right off the bat at all. You see, when I first picked this book up I thought it would be right off the bad about a girl in a mental institution, but that's not what it is at all. It is about a girl living a simple life, and then spiraling into a dark abyss caused by traumatic experiences in her life. She doesn't start out a lunatic, no. It's all these experiences that she has in her life that cause this. Because people aren't born crazy and wanting to kill themselves, it is the people around them and the situation under which they reside that cause them to spiral that way. But that's a bit of a ramble for another day.This book has a unique storyline, but that's not what makes it so great. It's the writing style. It is so beautifully layered and backed up with facts that are placed at the right place with the right amount of information. It's the fact that, while reading this book you can actually picture yourself in Esther's position and you see and hear and feel what she does. That's what makes this book so great.You see, The Bell Jar is Sylvia Plath's life story. And I am sorry but when someone can write a book about a girl who is mentally ill so well how can you not catch onto the fact that the writer may be going through the same things in her head? You would have to be blind to not see that! Now, a little back-story on why I am so defensive of this book: I know how both Esther Greenwood and Sylvia Plath feels about life, when you think that there is no way out but death. And believe me, if I could write a book based on my own life I would-- and it would be exactly like The Bell Jar [Except maybe without all the shock treatments and mental asylums].