- Hardcover: 527 pages
- Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group; 1 edition (25 Sept. 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0375414959
- ISBN-13: 978-0375414954
- Product Dimensions: 16.6 x 4.4 x 24.1 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 8,799,456 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Bridge of Sighs Hardcover – 25 Sep 2007
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"Unfolding slowly and in minute detail ... at its best when it evokes the rhythms of blue-collar family life in upstate New York in the 1950s and 60s" (Metro)
"Russo's state-of-the-nation novel is a complex read, but totally engrossing" (Marie Claire)
"In graceful, elegiac sentences...Pulitzer Prize-winning Russo exposes the dark heart of the American Dream" (Daily Mail)
"Richly evocative and beautifully wrought...a novel of great warmth, charm and intimacy...sharp, funny storytelling" (New York Times)
"No novelist working today can better capture the rhythms of small-town life, from its comic idiosyncrasies to its wicked undercurrents of gossip and prejudice" (Sunday Times) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A big new American novel for our times, by the Pulitzer prize-winning author of Empire Falls, about innocence and cynicism, optimism and despair, mining the secrets of society and the human heart in a rich, dramatic and big-hearted story of families and growing up, and the secrets which define a community - rich, sinuous and surprising, with new and darker undercurrents. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product description
Top Customer Reviews
So I was delighted to get yet another novel from an author who doesn't write as much as I'd like, and it's a big meaty one. As one of the other reviewers pointed out, you want your favorite authors' books to be like his or her other books, but you want them to be different. And Bridge of Sighs is about as different as possible from Russo's other books, yet at the same time his depth of character, humanism and touching details are ever-present.
The story tells the tale of Lou C. Lynch (nicknamed Lucy), and his relationship with his family, his only friend, and eventually his girlfriend who will later become his wife. It's vintage Russo in his characterization and portrayal of small-town America, a tiny slice of life of a small town in upstate New York. This is what's called a "character-driven novel", where the plot itself is dependent on the characters and their actions, and that explains why some reviewers found the book "slow" or "wordy". Russo weaves a tapestry of the events in his characters' lives, their feelings, and their thoughts.
I won't deny that I was a bit thrown by this book after a while. But I trusted Russo to bring this story to a moving conclusion, and had tears in my eyes during the final chapter. If you don't have patience to read a true stylist and, in my opinion, on of America's finest character authors, you'd best avoid this book. But if you are willing to give yourself up to Russo's world for more than 500 pages, you'll be much the richer. As always, Russo gives a great story, with moving, real people in events that you can imagine occurring to you. A great read indeed.
Richard Russo has liberally peppered his narrative with fascinating characters, and taken a perceptive look at the anxieties, doubts and situations experienced in youth that are the stone from which the identity of each character is carved. We have our protagonist Lou (Lucy) Lynch filled with naïve idealism and ever present optimism, a trait that he inherited from his father. Tessa, his mother, is the unfaltering realist with a pragmatic approach to living life. Tommy Marconi (Noonan) - is a man Lucy considers to be his friend.....a man who uses his artistic talent as an outlet for his rage and for who control is a requisite for living.
Other characters, wives, lovers, parents, sons, and friends are intricately woven through this multi-faceted story creating depth and adding dimension to a tale that, like Russo's Empire Falls, can barely be contained between the covers of this novel.
Bridge of Sighs makes one unmistakable point----- we are all an amalgamation of the parental input, life experiences and insights that have brought us to a metaphorical bridge. We can choose to cross the proffered bridge or fall into the chasm of memories (some of which may be clouded by time and age).
Although the humour was more in the study of the 'human condition' as I think one of the other reviewers refers to it, the book was no less enjoyable for it. For a book of this length to be such an easy read, and for the characters to stay with you once you have closed the cover is a mark of its merits I think.
I read this book on holiday and so finished it in 2 days, but even when I had moved on to my next holiday read I still found myself wondering what the characters in 'Bridge of Sighs' were doing. I love the way Russo paints America and would recommend this particular book to anyone who enjoys the type of book which immerses you in someone else's life, and which lets you have a little bit of escapism.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Amongst all the claimants to the title of The Great American novel this one effortlessly, if lengthily, covers all of the American, and human condition. Read morePublished on 13 Jun. 2012 by Jeff Cotton
Richard Russo's 2007 novel Bridge Of Sighs is an epic tale of the interwoven lives of three families (the Steins, the Bergers and the Marconis) growing up in upstate New York in... Read morePublished on 27 Mar. 2012 by Keith M
Unless you are fascinated by small town life in upstate New York, this is a book whose pace is likely to feel - at times - rather slow. Read morePublished on 30 Dec. 2011 by J. H. Bretts
I don't often cast a book aside after one chapter but I just couldn't go on with this one. The writing style is so dull. Read morePublished on 24 July 2011 by Gonetomorrow
Bridge of Sighs sucks you in to a world where small things happen and ordinary people become as real as the ones you live with. Read morePublished on 8 Nov. 2009 by B. Kelly
This book started with a heavy handicap, or several: its door-stopping
weight; its cover; its title, which seemed to me to pander to the American-fascination-with-Venice... Read more
This one one of those novels you can just wallow in for days. Richard Russo creates a perfect portrait of an imperfect world, showing the relationships between parent and child,... Read morePublished on 5 April 2009 by herladyship
Never heard of him or the book. I was sent it to review on the Simon Mayo book program and was blown away. If you like John Irving or Robertson Davies then you will love it. Read morePublished on 13 Dec. 2007 by Mr. Simon Clarke