M Daly, October 22, 2014 (view all comments by M Daly)
This is really two stories. The first is the story of a young man studying architecture in 1930s France, and falling in love. The second is what happens when this young man, who is a Hungarian Jew, is forced to return to Hungary during WWII. Julie Orringer manages to weave two mesmerizing stories.
Stpaulgirl, January 6, 2013 (view all comments by Stpaulgirl)
Orringer weaves a beautiful story of a family clinging to love and dignity in the face of unspeakable injustice. The rise of the Third Reich and the holocaust are the backdrop to a compelling story of loyalty and resilience. Orringer's talent as a fiction writer shines through in her ability to tell the story without lapsing into sentimentality. If you think you can't handle another novel about the holocaust, think again and give this one a try.
Sarah Foutts, August 2, 2012 (view all comments by Sarah Foutts)
I picked this book up by chance, just looking for something different to read, once I started I could not put the book down! Julie Orringer immediately sets you, the reader, on a journey that never fades even when you finish the book. The details she provides makes you believe that the characters were actually alive at this point of history, she writes about, you feel the characters pain, happiness, agony and extreme desparation. I read this book a few months ago and the characters are still with me, calling me to read about their lives again and again.
The Invisible Bridge (Vintage Contemporaries)
Used Trade Paper
0 stars -
Vintage Books USA -
by Sheila A.,
The Invisible Bridge is jaw-droppingly impressive. Orringer is a hugely talented writer, able to wrangle epic themes — love and war, tragedy and redemption — and tame them with her deft, evocative prose. Her debut novel is cinematic, heart-wrenching, and utterly alive with sensory detail. I implore you: don't miss it.
by Sheila A.
"What begins as a jewel-box romance soon breaks open into a harrowing saga of war. Orringer, drawing upon assiduous research into Hungarian history (and her own), conveys a piercing sense of what it means to be fated by one’s blood, as well as a rich understanding ot the capricious nature of survival."
by New York magazine,
"Orringer avoids bathos and has a gift for re-creating distant times and places: a Paris suffused with the scent of paprikas and the sounds of American jazz, the camraderies and cruelties of the work camps. The ticking clock of history keeps it urgent and moving forward, and the result is, against all odds, a Holocaust page-turner. Buy it."
by Kirkus Reviews,
"A long, richly detailed debut novel from prizewinning short-story writer Orringer. . . . Her story develops without sentimentality or mawkishness, though it is full of grand emotions. Though the events of the time, especially in Hungary, are now the stuff of history books and increasingly fewer firsthand memories, Orringer writes without anachronism, and convincingly. Written with the big picture view of Doctor Zhivago or Winds of War — and likely to be one of the big books of the season."
"A hugely ambitious undertaking, but [Orringer] has every detail under control, from the architectural currents in Europe in the 1930s to the day-to-day struggle to survive. . . . Completely absorbing . . . an astonishing achievement." (starred review)
by Michael Chabon,
"To bring an entire lost world — its sights, its smells, its heartaches, raptures and terrors — 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."
Orringer's astonishing first novel is a grand love story and an epic tale of three brothers whose lives are torn apart by war. An unforgettable story of history and love, of marriage tested by disaster, of a Jewish family's struggle against annihilation, and of the dangerous power of art in a time of war.
Paris, 1937. Andras Lévi, a Hungarian-Jewish architecture student, arrives from Budapest with a scholarship, a single suitcase, and a mysterious letter he promised to deliver. But when he falls into a complicated relationship with the letter's recipient, he becomes privy to a secret that will alter the course of his—and his family’s—history. From the small Hungarian town of Konyár to the grand opera houses of Budapest and Paris, from the despair of Carpathian winter to an unimaginable life in labor camps, The Invisible Bridge tells the story of a family shattered and remade in history’s darkest hour.
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