2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A curious little book......,
This review is from: The Bridge of San Luis Rey (Penguin Modern Classics) (Paperback)
I found this a curious little book. In 1714 a rickety wooden bridge spanning a gorge on the route from Cuzco to Lima collapsed killing five people. This tragic event was witnessed by a monk, Brother Juniper, who decides to investigate the lives of the five and see if there was a reason that God chose them to be killed at that moment.
The next three chapters are devoted to explaining the lives of the five (three in great detail, two remain much more shadowy). There is no obvious reason that they have been "chosen" for sacrifice - except perhaps that they are all fall somewhat outside the patterns of behaviour for the times?
The book is filled with interesting snippets: "There was something in Lima wrapped up in yards of violet satin from which protruded a great dropsical head and two fat pearly hands; and that was its archbishop." And he also tells us: "Like all the rich he could not bring himself to believe that the poor could really suffer."
Much of the language Wilder uses seemed very archaic. Perhaps this was deliberate to tune in with the early 18th century but it seemed odd when one considers The Bridge of San Luis Rey was written in the same decade as The Great Gatsby, The Sun Also Rises and The Painted Veil.
I enjoyed reading this book but I did find the final reasoning a bit trite - cod psychology about the power of love.
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Initial post: 28 Mar 2013 15:05:04 GMT
Eileen Shaw says:
Hi Wynne, I read this years and years ago and had forgotten about it, but I might just go back and renew my memory.
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