Bridge of Clay – Markus Zusak

DNF @ 22%

Okay, so maybe I’m just not supposed to read Markus Zusak’s books. I wanted to care, I tried to care, but I don’t care and I’m feeling quite un-Australian about the whole experience. I was interested in the mother’s backstory and probably would have enjoyed this book had she been the focus but I had no interest in her sons. They’re the kind of rough and tumble boys I avoided in high school and it turns out I’m still not interested in their fights or why they think it’s a good idea to steal letterboxes when they’re drunk.

Perhaps if I’d managed to make it to the end of the book I may have found a soft spot for at least one of the brothers but I found getting through each chapter a slog and finally decided that life’s too short to turn yourself inside out trying to like a book simply because you think you should.

From what I can tell from trying and failing to love this book, it eventually boils down to the following sentence:

Clay builds a bridge.

When I raised my white flag it was clear that Clay was going to physically build a bridge with his father and in doing so I’m guessing he also manages to build a bridge over the chasm separating father from sons. I know so many people love this book already and wish I was one of them but I admit defeat. If you read this book I really hope you love it.

Once Upon a Blurb

The breathtaking story of five brothers who bring each other up in a world run by their own rules. As the Dunbar boys love and fight and learn to reckon with the adult world, they discover the moving secret behind their father’s disappearance. 

At the center of the Dunbar family is Clay, a boy who will build a bridge – for his family, for his past, for greatness, for his sins, for a miracle. 

The question is, how far is Clay willing to go? And how much can he overcome?

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