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The Bridge

3.59 of 5 stars 3.59  ·  rating details  ·  378 ratings  ·  94 reviews
The City is divided. The bridges gated. In Southside, the hostiles live in squalor and desperation, waiting for a chance to overrun the residents of Cityside.
Nik is still in high school but is destined for a great career with the Internal Security and Intelligence Services, the brains behind the war. But when ISIS comes recruiting, everyone is shocked when he isn't chosen...more
Paperback, 344 pages
Published August 1st 2011 by Text Publishing
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3.5 stars

Why do you believe what you believe?

How much of the way you see the world is filtered through a lens built by your community, your education, the media?
‘We rode to war in a taxi-cab’.
This is the cracking opening line of The Bridge, an intensely thought-provoking novel that tackles head on the issues of war, propaganda, racism and class distinction, and the way political and religious ideology play into conflict.

The story follows Nik, a student at an elite Cityside school, who appears...more
Dec 02, 2011 Arlene rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Arlene by: Street Corner Bookers - Aussie Tour Nic
Rating Clarificaiton: 4.5 Stars

The Bridge by Jane Higgins is definitely an award-worthy story in its own right. Winner of The Text Prize this intricate novel weaves heavy themes such as political power, friendship, self-identity and survival into a perfectly executed example of writing at its finest.

In this novel, Nik and his fellow classmates of Tornmoor Academy live in a world where their city is at war. There’s the Southside where the hostiles live in desperate, harsh conditions and are fight...more
3.5 stars

Aussie Book challenge 2011 #12

The Bridge is a ruthless, intense and heart pounding survival piece that is plunged deep within the setting of a chaotic war.
Tornmoor Academy is a school where kids go to be educated in physics, engineering, mathematics, chemistry, genetics and scripture in hopes to be added as an intelligence weapon for the ISIS (Internal Security and Intelligence Services), to be recruited as an elite and be apart of a team that will fight against the hostiles and find a...more
Shirley Marr
The Bridge is the 2011 winner of The Text Prize, an annual X-Factor contest of the Australian publishing world where the prize is a publishing contract and a $10,000 advance (which btw, is huge, trust me - starving authors are salivating from a distance as we speak). I admit it - I've been watching this contest like a hawk since its inception.

The inaugural winner was The Billionaire's Curse. Like Johnny Ruffo - it's young and immature and when it comes to the crunch - talentless. This was follo...more
Paula Weston
This is an excellent novel. It’s got everything a great YA story should have: strong characters, gripping plot, nail-biting tension, and a powerful message (in this case, the futility of war).

I love the way narrative character Nik’s view of the world is shaken – and ultimately widened – when he crosses into enemy territory to find a captured friend.

Jane Higgins does a great job of depicting how a society might respond to ongoing conflict. In The Bridge, both sides have de-humanised the other; bo...more
This review is also posted on my blog, In The Good Books.

Firstly, that's one hell of a cover. The artwork is just incredible.

Secondly, this quote:

Over the Bridge, it's dark not day
Over the Bridge, the devils play
Over the Bridge, their souls are BLACK
Go over the Bridge and you won't come BACK.

Anyway, I borrowed The Bridge from my library solely because it won the Text Prize, an award that went to the amazing This Is Shyness last year, and it definitely deserved the accolade.

The Bridge told th...more
Joy (joyous reads)
Feb 16, 2012 Joy (joyous reads) rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Joy (joyous reads) by: Legs
This book gave me grief; it was like staring at the sun, you know it's harmful to your eyes and yet you can't look away. It was a brutal read but try as I might, I couldn't refrain from reading. It was harsh, it tugged at my heart strings and it put my brain into some calisthenics its never been through before.

The City is at war, divided into settlements where some are living in impoverish, deplorable conditions. If you're living in the Cityside, you might be able to live decently but at a cost...more
This is the 2010 winner of the Text Prize. While I can't post a review prior to another review that I've written being published in Bookseller & Publisher. I can say that this book is amazing. Absolutely incredible.
Realized I forgot to review this one... Oops!

Hello, my name is Sarah and I'm obsessed with adding Australian YA novels that I can't get in the US to my Goodreads TBR.
Christina (Ensconced in Lit)
I received this book from Librarything Early Reviewers program in exchange for an honest review.

The Bridge by Jane Higgins follows Nik, who is an outsider of sorts in his prestigious boarding school. The cream of the crop become part of a secret elite group called ISIS who are the prime defenders against infiltration of the other side. Nik, for some reason, doesn't get selected even though he's top in his class. After war breaks loose, Fyffe, a good school friend of his, and Nik cross the Bridge...more
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blurb: The City is divided. The bridges gated. In Southside, the hostiles live in squalor and desperation, waiting for a chance to overrun the residents of Cityside.

Nik is still in high school but destined for a great career with the Internal Security and Intelligence Services, the brains behind the war. But when ISIS comes recruiting, everyone is shocked when he isn’t chosen. There must be an explanation, but no one will talk about it. Then the school is bombed and the hostiles ta...more
I don't think that I have read many better first lines, 'We rode to war in a taxi-cab.' certainly drew my attention. Nik is a scholarship student at an elite school, and at the beginning of this book he is expecting, along with his 'girl friend' Dash, to be selected as a recruit for ISIS (International Security and Intelligence Services) only, as a reader, you kind of know that he won't be chosen. And you also get the idea that he isn't really attached to Dash that very much, 'Dash and I had bat...more
"We drove to war in a taxi-cab." So the adventure begins.

In this dystopian YA novel, Higgins builds us a broken civilisation, separated by a bridge. Cityside are the haves, run with military precision by intelligence agency ISIS. Then there's Southside, with the Breken (an interesting inflection on 'broken'). They've been shut out by the citysiders, who fiercely guard their privileges against rogue attempts to cross the bridge.

Nik is a Citysider with a blank past. His parents were killed when he...more
Fabian Lozada
I absolutely love this book. Most of my books involve fast paced action and adventure that gives me a need to turn the page and does not release me until the very last sentence. This book however is not like those, its more slowly paced, much more calm. I was able to sit down and read through this book, and although it kept me turning the page, it did not choke me with so much action and adventure (which is not bad, just always need a break from it). It did have its action, and the entire book w...more
Katrina Ly
ok so i guess its only fair to say that this book was written really really well and that as soon as i began to read the first words, i was totally and completely hooked from start to finish. however having said that, i am not very happy at the ending and i'm still wondering, is this a series or what? cuz if it is, then i definitely, hands-down, totally give it all 5 stars. however if its a stand-alone novel, i'm sticking to my rating.

to all those thinking about reading it, its set in the future...more
Khalil Green
Here is something to think about: Have I ever read anything like "The Hunger Games"? Unless you have read the Bridge, you haven't.

The bridge is an action packed story about a boy, named Nikolai Stais, stuck in between a war between two people: The Citysiders and the Southsiders. Nikolai was born was raised in the Cityside This takes place in the future of America but not as futuristic as the "Hunger Games". Also in this story, there are these bridges that seperate the two places. Sense the South...more
Alastair Crawford
It's that central necessity of a book to have an engaging narrator, who could be endearing, witty, smarmy, charming, belligerent, or shockingly honest. "We read to know we are not alone," they say, and it's often the narrator who is our mate as we go through the pages. It doesn't have to be a character, a first person narrator, Jane Austen's pithy witty omniscience is as great a temporary friend as Chief Bromden's constant fractured and disturbed insightfulness, and Todd's earnest blundering hop...more
This book did absolutely nothing for me. Nothing at all.

This is a story that has been told ten ways until Sunday. There really isn't much going on this book that didn't go on in the others like it. You have someone who grew up part of one faction, only to learn that he has massive roots in the other faction. This opens up roads for moral confusion. It also gives way to angst between existing relationships, reasons to discriminate against the character, and to also undertake a manhunt for them. A...more
Book Master
The Bridge, - a war between the hostiles and the city, separated by a bridge...


Personal Enjoyment: 3.5/5
General Quality: 3.3/5

Enjoyment is purely what it says - even if the writing contains spelling errors, if that didn't affect my enjoyment the rating wouldn't be altered because of it. However, in the quality section it most likely will be. I rate on enjoyment. The quality scale ignores genre preferences.


5.0 - One of the best books I've ever read, it affected me and I wil...more
The new twist in dystopian YA literature seems to be keeping the reader guessing as to who are the good guys and who are the bad guys. Jane Higgins successfully leaves the reader with the impression there may not be any good guys in The Bridge. At least not in their governments. Nik grew up believing the enemy was across the bridge, and he was going to be one of the warrior heroes who defeated them. When his best friend is captured, Nik goes to save him, knowing if he is caught, he will be kille...more
Alicia Marie
3 stars. I debated and debated with myself over how many star to give. I didn't hate this book. I didn't love this book. So, 3 stars.

This book's story is intriguing, mysterious, and action packed. It has a wonderful ending that leaves you really thinking about life. But there were 2 huge problems with this book that I just couldn't get over.

First, what was the war about? The whole book is based around 2 different sides of a war, but there is absolutely no background about how the war got start...more
I didn't pick this book off the shelf. It was wrapped in brown paper and issued to my through my school library's 'blind date with a book day'. However, it was a dystopia, a genre which I quite enjoy.
The Bridge is well-written fresh dystopia. Non-conformative, exciting, and well paced. In the first chapter I thought that it would obviously be about Nik getting in to the obviously baddy ISIS group and then showing them for what they are (well I didn't know what they are, but still.) Then he didn'...more
Pam Saunders
Appeal to teens who enjoyed Tomorrow When the War Began series.

The city is divided and the bridges are guarded. The northside is full of the more wealthy people, while southsiders live in poverty and squalor. They don’t have proper medicine, and they never have enough to eat. Their main desire is to overrun the northside and live in equality. Nik is an orphan northsider who is in high school, and destined for a great career with the Internal Security and Intelligence Services. However, when ISIS comes to recruit, they don’t pick him. Then the hostiles overr...more
Jane Higgins is a New Zealand Author and THE BRIDGE is her first book. The location of the story is an unspecified war-torn divided city that could be located anywhere in the world; little is said about the rest of the world. The two sides of the city are Cityside and Southside and they are separated by a fast flowing river and only linked by a series of heavily defended bridges. Both sides want to be in control. After the explosive start to the book Nik and Fyffe go over the bridge to Southside...more
Nicola Mansfield
Reason for Reading: I love post-apocalyptic novels and this sounded good and also like it would be a stand-alone as I'm tired of trilogies.

I really enjoyed this book. I'll start by saying it's not the greatest ever of this genre but something unique in what is coming out for YA these days. This is not dystopian but pure post apocalyptic. This world is far into the future after it's collapse and we don't really know what happened other than war of some sort. The author is from New Zealand and we...more
Bree T
Nik is a high school student in ‘Cityside’, divided from ‘Southside’ by a bridge. The hostiles live in Southside, making raids every now and then, blowing up Cityside landmarks until the Cityside army forces them back and retakes their territory. Citysiders believe they are on the privileged side and that the Southsiders live in poverty and squalor.

Nik doesn’t remember his parents, he assumes they died in a former uprising when he was small. He was delivered to the boarding school at which he is...more
Does not provide a new social commentary
There is a war going on. When a war is happening, the reader should understand who the factions are and what they stand for. The first problem I had with this story was that the factions were not at all clear to me. There was the use of acronyms for one of the Southern groups, which lost me completely – what does CFM stand for? Then there were the Citysiders and the Remnants. Too many sides not clearly explained. Their purpose and values were not understoo...more
Review Posted here
The Bridge - a post apocalyptic novel with a great cover and a synopsis that would pull any reader in - did not really cut it for me.
I was really looking forward to The Bridge by Jane Higgins, and was thrilled when I got it. I started right away and thought I was in for one hell of a book. But I just could not commit to The Bridge the way I wanted to.
Let's be honest here, the beginning and end was decent, high-energy, action packed and thrilling. But the middle was lacking. The...more
This review can also be found here

I really could not get into this story. Sure the adventure was thrilling and the plot was fast paced but there was something about it that truly kept me from enjoying it. It took everything I had just to continue reading this, just to get to the end and have closure.

This book is aimed at Young Adults but at times it read more like a Middle Grade book than anything else. I found the writing to be choppy and at times many things didn't make sense. I found myself...more
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Jane was born in Christchurch, New Zealand. Over the years, she has traveled away, but she returned in the 1990s; she and her husband, Paul, live there still, even though the ground now shakes at regular and unnerving intervals and has done since the earthquakes of September 2010 and February 2011.

Growing up, she read a lot of classic science fiction, fantasy and myth, and was captivated by the as...more
More about Jane Higgins...
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