Monday, August 08, 2005

So it was with relief yesterday that I retreated to The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder. I can't believe I never had to read this in school or that I never got to it on my own until now. Actually, to be honest, I'm woefully behind on my classics reading so it's not all that surprising I haven't read it. I finally checked it out because of an interview with David Mitchell where he praised the novel and said that Luisa Rey in Ghostwritten and Cloud Atlas was named in honor of it. The book opens in the immediate aftermath of a terrible tragedy - a bridge in Peru assumed to be "among the things that last forever" broke and cast five people into the canyon to their deaths. We meet them through interlocking stories describing each person and the events that led them to that bridge at that moment. It really is a gorgeous book and I think I'm going to have to buy a copy for my own collection.

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