Bridge of Sighs

Bridge of Sighs

by Richard Russo

Kaaren Dolinsky: I guess I'm the only one who wished the book was even longer! I loved every page of it and found myself unable to put it down for the last 100 pages. I enjoyed the multiple perspectives/narrative voices, the multiple philosophies of life and the "happy ending". It was typical Russo and everything that makes him a popular literary writer: characterization, plot, no easy answers... Perhaps it will be a movie and more accessible for more people. Anybody want to guess who would play which parts???
Rating: *****

Hadrian Kalfus: I brought this book along on a 2 week cruise thinking it would be perfect at 500 + pages. I started it on the plane with high expectations. I was underwhelmed from the beginning. I managed to plug through the entire book, but found myself skimming with all the detail. I think the story line was wonderful, just too much detail. It could have been shorter and less descriptive.
Rating: ****

Arlene Almas: I agree with Gail's review (below) - in fact, I was not able to get through the 525 pages! Too often I felt that I was reading the same story over and over again, and eventually gave up. I'm going to have to bring the rating average down on this one. Incidentally, I really enjoyed the TV movie of "Empire Falls."
Rating: *

Gail Reid: Bridge of Sighs, Richard Russo's latest saga of small town America tells the story of Lou C. (Lucy) Lynch and his lifetime affection for his economically depressed upstate New York community. In contrast, Bobby Marconi, his childhood friend and idol, escapes his roots and family dysfunction, settling in Italy, where he becomes a renowned artist, haunted by his past.

No one captures small town life as well as Richard Russo. But, at 525 pages, the book is enmeshed in far too much detail. The characters range from engaging to dull but many are forgettable.

For a far better read, I would recommend Russo's Empire Falls, a most worthy selection for the 2002 Pulitzer Prize.
Rating: ***

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