Bridge of Sighs: Library Edition

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9780739371237: Bridge of Sighs: Library Edition

Six years after the bestselling, Pulitzer Prize—winning Empire Falls, Richard Russo returns with a novel that expands even further his widely heralded achievement.
Louis Charles (“Lucy”) Lynch has spent all his sixty years in upstate Thomaston, New York, married to the same woman, Sarah, for forty of them, their son now a grown man. Like his late, beloved father, Lucy is an optimist, though he’s had plenty of reasons not to be–chief among them his mother, still indomitably alive. Yet it was her shrewdness, combined with that Lynch optimism, that had propelled them years ago to the right side of the tracks and created an “empire” of convenience stores about to be passed on to the next generation.
Lucy and Sarah are also preparing for a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Italy, where his oldest friend, a renowned painter, has exiled himself far from anything they’d known in childhood. In fact, the exact nature of their friendship is one of the many mysteries Lucy hopes to untangle in the “history” he’s writing of his hometown and family. And with his story interspersed with that of Noonan, the native son who’d fled so long ago, the destinies building up around both of them (and Sarah, too) are relentless, constantly surprising, and utterly revealing.

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Product Description:

Two boys grow up in Thomaston, upstate New York. One of them gets away to Italy, where he becomes a painter. The other stays to marry Sarah, also an artist; to run a small empire of convenience stores; and to tell their story. He's a good man, but Louis Charles Lynch, known as Lucy, isn't always as reliable as he seems, and even he secretly longs for what he can't have. Now, at sixty years old, he and Sarah are about to travel to Venice, where Lucy's oldest friend and rival has traded life and family for a life far removed from Thomaston. The truth about why he left, and aboutthe ties that bind these three friends, is complex, heartbreaking and utterly compelling.

Review:

Amazon Significant Seven, November 2007: Richard Russo's first book since the Pulitzer Prize-winning Empire Falls, Bridge of Sighs is a typically stunning portrait of three small town families struggling--like the town itself--to strike a balance between obsessively embracing their own history or shunning it entirely, with devastating consequences along both paths. Bridge of Sighs is pure Russo: funny, heartbreaking, and ringing completely true. --Jon Foro

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