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Customer Reviews for

Bridge of Sighs

Average Rating 4
( 96 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(46)

4 Star

(28)

3 Star

(13)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(5)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Russo's story captured me, drew me in and made me feel at home at Ikey Lubin's.

I loved this book. I hated to finish and leave behind characters that I had come to know and love. It brought back memories of my own childhood and the "characters" that inhabited that landscape. Russo has written eloquently about "telling the truth, the whole truth ...
I loved this book. I hated to finish and leave behind characters that I had come to know and love. It brought back memories of my own childhood and the "characters" that inhabited that landscape. Russo has written eloquently about "telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth," and also about the secrets we withhold, even from ourselves. It's a character driven novel that moves simultaneously between past and present, as do we all in our own lives. It's about understanding where we've been and making peace with that and welcoming with open arms who we've become and where we're going. Russo has painted a rich canvas that he invites you to step into. For me, it was hard to resist.

posted by SparkyNV on May 24, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Left me disappointed, though I am not sure why...

I really liked Empire Falls and was excited to read this book. While Russo is a terrific writer and I liked the book, I was left somewhat disappointed at the end. I am not sure I can accurately articulate why. I feel like the story was building up to a big climax tha...
I really liked Empire Falls and was excited to read this book. While Russo is a terrific writer and I liked the book, I was left somewhat disappointed at the end. I am not sure I can accurately articulate why. I feel like the story was building up to a big climax that never really happened - and because of that, we never really got to know 2 of the 3 main characters as well as we should have. Put another way, even though the book was 600+ pages long, it feels like at the end Russo rushed to finish it with and didn't give as much thought to tying up the story as he did to the earlier sections - the ending almost feels like a completely different style than the rest of the book. And maybe that's what left me disappointed.

posted by reader72 on March 15, 2009

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 96 Customer Reviews
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  • Posted February 13, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    AMAZING!

    This is my favorite Russo book! I loved the characters and the way they relate to each other. "Bridge of Sighs" is a beautiful read of real characters struggling to make sense of the world they live in. His characters try to make the best of the cards they are dealt. There are a number of themes running throughout the book, but for me the main one is the question of which path to take in life? Do we really choose which path to take? Is regret inevitable regardless of which path we take? There will always be problems to solve, no matter. This is real life. Witty. Insightful. Exciting. I just loved it!!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 24, 2009

    Russo's story captured me, drew me in and made me feel at home at Ikey Lubin's.

    I loved this book. I hated to finish and leave behind characters that I had come to know and love. It brought back memories of my own childhood and the "characters" that inhabited that landscape. Russo has written eloquently about "telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth," and also about the secrets we withhold, even from ourselves. It's a character driven novel that moves simultaneously between past and present, as do we all in our own lives. It's about understanding where we've been and making peace with that and welcoming with open arms who we've become and where we're going. Russo has painted a rich canvas that he invites you to step into. For me, it was hard to resist.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 3, 2010

    Highly Recommended!

    A beautiful story! I was drawn to the characters as my own family members and hated to give them up when the story ended. I loved the bits of humor woven into the storyline and the consister reminder to love and accept people as they are (a principle we can apply in our own lives). I guess I can say I came away from reading this book feeling encouraged and better about life in general. The strong language in some parts kept me from giving it a five star rating.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 13, 2009

    A Wonderful Read

    Richard Russo never fails to tell a story which invites you into the lives of characters who make you laugh and cry. Well developed story line, little twists and turns, a book to enjoy on all levels.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2009

    Small Town America

    A complex and compelling story of Small Town America, told by Lou Lynch (Lucy) who, as the main character, is writing about his life. Throughout the story, which spans about 50 years, we meet Bobby, Sarah, Tessa, Dec, and many more family members and friends. Russo tells this tale with intelligence and detail and great insight into human behavior.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 4, 2009

    An absorbing and moving account of the emotional complexities of apparently ordinary lives.

    Richard Russo returns to the small, declining northeastern towns he customarily chronicles to reveal the moving and complex emotional lives of two generations of two apparently ordinary families. The situations in which he places his characters are neither highly dramatic nor unusual, but he freights them with feelings that are all the more intense for being so recognizable. The plot is complex and the switches between narrative foci and time frames make for some initial confusion, but as the story unfolds all is clarified. The characters are fully drawn and we are drawn to them, seeing in their dilemmas many of our own.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Left me disappointed, though I am not sure why...

    I really liked Empire Falls and was excited to read this book. While Russo is a terrific writer and I liked the book, I was left somewhat disappointed at the end. I am not sure I can accurately articulate why. I feel like the story was building up to a big climax that never really happened - and because of that, we never really got to know 2 of the 3 main characters as well as we should have. Put another way, even though the book was 600+ pages long, it feels like at the end Russo rushed to finish it with and didn't give as much thought to tying up the story as he did to the earlier sections - the ending almost feels like a completely different style than the rest of the book. And maybe that's what left me disappointed.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2008

    This book is like really good chocolate

    Reading Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo is like being handed a piece of really wonderful chocolate, it is to be savored. Like all of Russo's novels this book is about small town life. The characters are normal and deeply flawed at the same time. The are peaks and valleys in this novel to be sure, but the end result is the same. When you are finished with this story, the characters will stay with you for a long while.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2008

    So it's not Empire Falls ...

    But so what? Each book, within its covers, is its own individual and to make comparisons like some reviewers are doing here, seems unfair. Yes, another book about small town America and maybe we've seen these characters before because we simply recognize ourselves in them and let's face it, most readers read to escape from themselves and their lives. Even in this regard, one cannot fairly put this book aside as 'just another' ... Mr Russo with his amazing literary talent has spewed pages and pages full of a beautiful story through magnificent and eloquent prose so much so that even a very short sentence makes you stop and ponder. That's why I loved this work. Richard Russo is an absolutely extraordinary story teller and I could not put Bridge of Sighs down until the very end. Amazing! I'm giving Bridge of Sighs 5 stars.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 20, 2007

    I'm in love with it and did not want to finish it

    I procrastinated to a great extent reading the last 200 pages, because I was so reluctant to let it go. This is a beautiful novel. To me, it's the great american novel, I loved it soooo much! The writing is simply gorgeous. . . kept me completely enthralled. This book is a very important one and I wish I could get everyone I know to read it, I'll certainly give it my best shot! I have read everything Mr. Russo has written, and loved them all. I very eagerly awaited this one and was by no means whatsoever disappointed, in fact, it was better than I could hope for! Kudos to you Mr. Russo, you continue to amaze me with your talent.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 19, 2007

    Wonderful

    Wonderful in it's simplicity. How Russo tells a tale of family, friends, love and life with such depth... The town is Every Town, the people are Everyone and the themes are universal. But in his telling the story truly breathes. Loved the book...

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2013

     

     

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 12, 2013

    I have enjoyed all of the Russo books, but this one seemed like

    I have enjoyed all of the Russo books, but this one seemed like a long journey that never led to anywhere. True, you can't beat the beauty of his writing, which is unmatched in my opinion. I, however, found the ending just didn't fulfill the over 600 pages to get there. If you are entertained by reading about ordinary lives that stay ordinary (which I suppose is as most of us live), it may be a long and satisfying read . . .but, for me this seemed like a long journey that just ran out of gas.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2012

    Really enjoyed it!

    A beautifully written book about getting older, marriage, an everything in between.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 14, 2011

    totally satisfying!

    What craftsmanship! So many characters living the present, while revealing their past. Not a story of dysfunctional personalities but rather ordinary personalities with both strengths and weaknesses.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 21, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Finally, I read a book by Russo

    Honestly, I have tried other books by this acclaimed author, but I could not get into them. For some reason, this one clicked for me. He is a good author; I read and reread some of his sentences, then read them out loud. I highly recommend this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 7, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    I Loved This Novel

    I enjoyed 'Mystic Falls' very much but I loved 'Bridge of Sighs.' My favorite novels have believable characters that seem like people you know but the writing offers exceptional insight about their lives. This novel is all about what you have and haven't done with your life and then living with the consequences. I read this novel several months ago but I think about its message often. There are so many passsages that state so eloquently thoughts I could never express as well myself.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2010

    Sighing over What Was

    Russo has spun an amazing story, one with twists and turns between the present and the past. While it takes a while to make connections, especially between the plot and the title, the finely woven sub-plots all come together to transport the reader over the Bridge. The cover, dove-tailing two distinct photos, is a link to the characters' sighs, reminding us that despite how much we want or try, our past is forever bridged to our present.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 13, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    I Still Don't Know Whether or Not I Liked This Book

    It is a rare book that can leave me unsure about whether or not I liked it. The style was quite accessible, yet disjointed. The characters were generally likable, yet showed little development over the course of 500 pages. The plot was generally unclear as the author jumped back and forth between characters, flashbacks, and references to events that may have already been covered, may yet be covered, and may not be genuinely discussed at all. The book contains some profanity and racial slurs. It was certainly not a stinker of a book, but I expected something more.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 4, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Loved with Reservations

    This is the first book of Richard Russo that I have read. I heard rave reviews from people that I share an interest in books I had high expectations. To tell the truth I started to read back in fall but could not get into the book. I put it down with the thought that it was just me and not the best time to start a new book. Sure enough ...I picked it up again two weeks ago and could not put it down. I loved the characters and the slow build. It was like a John Irving character similar to Owen Meany. The period it covered closely mirrored parts of my childhood and adulthood. I did become immersed in the family and the drama and heartache. Just when I was ready to deal with the story coming to some conclusions....it didn't. Very poor ending given how much you invest. Never saw it coming an so completely not believable. I just kept thinking "he doesn't know how to end this". Thankfully in the last few pages he takes a leap and somewhat ends it but too late for me. I would give him another chance though because I do like his writing style.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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