Markus Zusak’s “Bridge of Clay”

Rianna Thacker, Editor

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Did you enjoy The Book Thief? Or maybe I Am Messenger? The author of these two best sellers, Markus Zusak, released his new book Bridge of Clay  last October.

There are many interesting characters, starting with the main characters: the five Dunbar brothers, Mathew, Henry, Rory, Clay, and Tommy, their pets, Rosy the border collie, Achilles the mule, Hector the tabby, T the pigeon, and Agamemnon the goldfish. Tommy, the youngest, named all of the animals.

The older brothers hate the names because they are all too long and hard to say.

This book starts on the day when Mathew goes back to his childhood home to find his father’s typewriter. He begins to “write” the story of his life, the story of his family’s history. 

The story begins when their estranged father comes back after abandoning the family and says he wants to build a bridge. 

Clay is the only son who agrees to help his father with this strange endeavor, while the other four refuse because of their own personal issues with their dad.

Even though the dad left because of the devastating death of his wife and his inability to cope with the loss, the boys feel as though he should have been there to help and support them while they sorted through their own feelings.

Overall, this is a story about love, loss and the rebuilding of relationships.

However interesting the story, this book can be very difficult to read because the perspective of the characters changes all the time.

The author doesn’t provide the necessary cues when the perspective changes.  In addition, some spots lacks the detail needed in order to follow along.  

Despite all of the discrepancies I had with this book, I still really enjoy reading this author’s work.  Overall, this is not my favorite book by Markus Zusak.