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Bridge of Clay

by Markus Zusak


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From the author of the no.1 New York Times bestselling novel The Book Thief.

"An amazing talent in Australian literature" Sunday Telegraph

Let me tell you about our brother.
The fourth Dunbar boy named Clay.
Everything happened to him.
We were all of us changed through him.

The Dunbar boys bring each other up in a house run by their own rules. A family of ramshackle tragedy - their mother is dead, their father has fled - they love and fight, and learn to reckon with the adult world.

It is Clay, the quiet one, who will build a bridge; for his family, for his past, for his sins. He builds a bridge to transcend humanness. To survive.

A miracle and nothing less.

Markus Zusak makes his long-awaited return with a profoundly heartfelt and inventive novel about a family held together by stories, and a young life caught in the current: a boy in search of greatness, as a cure for a painful past.


'Exquisitely written multigenerational family saga...With heft and historical scope, Zusak creates a sensitively rendered tale of loss, grief, and guilt's manifestations.' Publishers Weekly

'An evocative, compassionate and exquisitely composed coming-of-age story about family, love, tragedy and forgiveness. Zusak's prose is distinct: astute, witty, exquisitely rhythmic, and utterly engrossing. The deliberateness of his sentences, down to the punctuation is something to savour...a profoundly moving and engaging meditation on innocence and the pliable ties that bind family together in a quintessentially Australian setting.' Australian Books+Publishing Magazine

'So, does it deliver? Yes, in spades. Zusak has crafted a strapping story about love, family, courage, betrayal and guilt...a great novel, rich with meaning, and one that will endure.' Australian Book Review

'Zusak is a writer of extraordinary empathy and he excels in his understanding of adolescent his portrayal of the gently traumatised Clay he has created a memorable character to savour... in Bridge of Clay, as earlier in The Book Thief, Zusak has succeeded in creating a story so vibrant and so real that the reader feels enveloped by it. Zusak's empathy and love for this flawed world permeate his writing and make this new book shine.' The Australian

''Bridge of Clay is a tender book, set in a world that is anything but. Its enormous ambitions are sustained by heartfelt beliefs, not least in the power of love. This vast novel is a feast of language and irony. Its narrative structure makes demands on the reader but it constantly works through tangled lives to achieve moments of sublime clarity and insight. It is such a compassionate book that it is hard not to fall a bit in love with it yourself. Bridge of Clay shares with Zusak's The Book Thief an underlying sense of the possibility of joy and human dignity even in dehumanising situations. It is driven by no agenda other than a desire to celebrate the ups and downs of flawed mortals. The makes it a breath of fresh air.' Sydney Morning Herald

'A complex, big-hearted, multi-generational Australian epic, highly evocative and rich in idiom that sprawls across 580 pages, much in the manner of Colleen McCullough, or Tim Winton's Cloudstreet.' Good Weekend Magazine

'In 2005, the Australian writer dazzled readers and secured a perch on bestseller lists with The Book Thief ...this book too is a stunner. Devastating, demanding and deeply...

Publication Details

Pan Macmillan Australia
Picador Australia
Publication Date:


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Markus Zusak (Author)

Markus Zusak is the author of five books, including the international bestseller, The Book Thief, which spent more than a decade on the New York Times bestseller list, and is translated into more than forty languages - establishing Zusak as one of...

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Bridge of Clay
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