Bridge of Sighs
By Richard Russo
(Vintage, Paperback, 9781400030903, 656pp.)
Publication Date: August 12, 2008
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Louis Charles Lynch (also known as Lucy) is sixty years old and has lived in Thomaston, New York, his entire life. He and Sarah, his wife of forty years, are about to embark on a vacation to Italy. Lucy's oldest friend, once a rival for his wife's affection, leads a life in Venice far removed from Thomaston. Perhaps for this reason Lucy is writing the story of his town, his family, and his own life that makes up this rich and mesmerizing novel, interspersed with that of the native son who left so long ago and has never looked back.
Bridge of Sighs, from the beloved Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Empire Falls, is a moving novel about small-town America that expands Russo's widely heralded achievement in ways both familiar and astonishing.
Richard Russo is the author of Mohawk, The Risk Pool, Straight Man, Nobody's Fool, and Empire Falls, which won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and a collection of stories, The Whore's Child. He and his wife live in coastal Maine.
1. Bridge of Sighs alternates two narratives: Lucy's first-person memoir and the story of Robert Noonan. What are the advantages of this structure? How does it affect the way plot unfolds? Does it influence your impressions of the main characters?
"A magnificent, bighearted new novel [and] an astounding achievement. . . . A masterpiece." —The Boston Globe"A story of constantly evolving complexity and depth. . . . [Bridge of Sighs is] Russo's most intricate, multifaceted novel . . . enormous and enormously moving."—The Washington Post Book World"A novel of great warmth, charm and intimacy . . . richly evocative and beautifully wrought."—The New York Times"[Russo's] most ambitious and best work."—USA Today