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The Invisible Bridge | [Julie Orringer]

The Invisible Bridge

Julie Orringer's astonishing first novel, eagerly awaited since the publication of her heralded best-selling short-story collection, How to Breathe Underwater, is a grand love story set against the backdrop of Budapest and Paris, an epic tale of three brothers whose lives are ravaged by war, and the chronicle of one family's struggle against the forces that threaten to annihilate it.
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Publisher's Summary

Julie Orringer's astonishing first novel, eagerly awaited since the publication of her heralded best-selling short-story collection, How to Breathe Underwater, is a grand love story set against the backdrop of Budapest and Paris, an epic tale of three brothers whose lives are ravaged by war, and the chronicle of one family's struggle against the forces that threaten to annihilate it.

Paris 1937. Andras Lvi, a Hungarian-Jewish architecture student, arrives from Budapest with a scholarship, a single suitcase, and a mysterious letter he has promised to deliver to C. Morgenstern on the rue de Svign. As he falls into a complicated relationship with the letters recipient, he becomes privy to a secret history that will alter the course of his own life.

Meanwhile, as his elder brother takes up medical studies in Modena and their younger brother leaves school for the stage, Europe's unfolding tragedy sends each of their lives into terrifying uncertainty. At the end of Andrass second summer in Paris, all of Europe erupts in a cataclysm of war.

From the small Hungarian town of Konyr to the grand opera houses of Budapest and Paris, from the lonely chill of Andrass room on the rue des coles to the deep and enduring connection he discovers on the rue de Svign, from the despair of Carpathian winter to an unimaginable life in forced labor camps and beyond, The Invisible Bridge tells the story of a love tested by disaster, of brothers whose bonds cannot be broken, of a family shattered and remade in history's darkest hour, and of the dangerous power of art in a time of war.

Expertly crafted, magnificently written, emotionally haunting, and impossible to put down, The Invisible Bridge resoundingly confirms Julie Orringer's place as one of todays most vital and commanding young literary talents.

©2010 Julie Orringer (P)2010 Random House

What the Critics Say

"To bring an entire lost world....to vivid life between the covers of a novel is an accomplishment; to invest that world, and everyone who inhabits it, with a soul, as Julie Orringer does in The Invisible Bridge, takes something more like genius." (Michael Chabon)

“Profound love, familial bonds and the deepest of human loyalties play out against the backdrop of unimaginable cruelty. . . . A stunning first novel.” (Los Angeles Times)

“One of the best books of the year.” (Junot Diaz)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (346 )
5 star
 (145)
4 star
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3 star
 (50)
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1 star
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Overall
4.3 (218 )
5 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Story
4.1 (224 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
 (9)
Performance
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  •  
    Janelle S. Taylor 07-14-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "Reader needs to bone up on French & Hebrew terms"
    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    I really like this book, and the narrator did a pretty good job overall, but I was appalled at how he butchered the pronunciation of the French and Hebrew terms (I'm in no position to judge his pronunciation of the Hungarian terms). Is it really so hard to find a reader who is knowledgeable about these other languages? or at least, willing to learn how to pronounce a few words? For the record "charoset" is not "chair-row-set"! Ugh.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandy Great Falls, MT, United States 05-15-12
    Sandy Great Falls, MT, United States 05-15-12 Member Since 2010

    My name is Ted and my wife is Sandy. I am a school teacher in Montana. I teach math and History. I live on 40 acres south of Great Falls.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved the story"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes I a a history teacher and the book gives an account of the horrible times of Hungary during WWII for the Jews.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes but it kept me running for a month.


    Any additional comments?

    I would like some other accounts of people in Eastern Europe or Europe in general during WWII that were not Jews. Most of the books I read are great but are written by Jews. I like their prospective and know it was a horrible time for them but I would like other views of the history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ilene palm desert, CA, United States 03-18-12
    ilene palm desert, CA, United States 03-18-12 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
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    "A good character development"

    This book builds the characters so that when WWII comes about you are going through their struggles with them. I was a little disappointed with the ending but the reader did a good job bringing out the personalities of the characters. It is sad and depressing and a difficult subject to read but the author did an amazing job.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan 08-26-13
    Susan 08-26-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Could not finish listening!"
    Would you try another book from Julie Orringer and/or Arthur Morey?

    I can't honestly comment on the story because i gave up listening to it - twice.


    What could Julie Orringer have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Please get involved in the production of your work in audio form. I have to believe that if the author had listened to even the first chapter this book it would not have been allowed to continue with all the mispronounced language.


    How could the performance have been better?

    I purchased it over a year ago and set it aside when i could no longer tolerate listening to the narrator butcher the Hungarian and French language which play a huge part in the book. I have just recently attempted to listen again and as before I was so distracted by the constantly mispronounced language that it interfered with my enjoying the story.

    Mr. Morey should have done his homework! Just like actors who train with voice coaches or language instructors for certain roles this should be a vital part of preparing to read a piece like this.

    In having said this i also fault the publisher and author for allowing the publication of this audio book with such badly pronounced language. The least thing the publisher could do at this point is to re-record this work because I think author, narrator and publisher dropped the ball on releasing this audio book in this state.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tracy 03-15-13
    Tracy 03-15-13 Member Since 2008

    Love a great book that stays with you long after you've finished it.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    191
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    "slow, dull and boring"

    Boring. I recognize good writing, but this story lacked something. I could not bring myself to care about the characters. When I wasn't listening I did not reflect upon the story or characters. I had five hours left to complete this novel and I could not finish it.
    Disappointing because others had rated this novel so highly. I would not recommend this book nor will I listen to future books by Julie Orringer.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lorilyn S. Coleman Santa Barbara, Ca United States 06-02-11
    Lorilyn S. Coleman Santa Barbara, Ca United States 06-02-11 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    "Too much pain"

    This was too dark and not redemptive enough. I suffered through it but wish I had just given up. The readers were fine but the story laborious and painful.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
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