Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Bridge of Clay” as Want to Read:
Bridge of Clay
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Bridge of Clay

by
3.80  ·  Rating details ·  19,875 ratings  ·  4,091 reviews
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
...more
Hardcover, 537 pages
Published October 9th 2018 by Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers (first published October 8th 2018)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Bridge of Clay, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Trebor
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Julie
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.80  · 
Rating details
 ·  19,875 ratings  ·  4,091 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of Bridge of Clay
Emily May
DNF - 30%

This is the first time in a while that I've actually not finished a book. I should mention that I was one of the few people who liked but didn't love The Book Thief, but I find it hard to believe that Bridge of Clay will be as well-loved as that book. More power to you if you can actually finish and enjoy it.

At times it felt like Zusak deliberately went out of his way to make the story more confusing and difficult to enjoy. It's a painfully cerebral metaphorical wandering through the lives of five Austra
...more
jessica
Mar 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites
when i die and they open me up, they will see this story engraved on my heart.

the manner in which this story has impacted me - by inhaling in the broken letters scattered among the pages, causing them to slowly seep into my veins, prompting my heart to start quietly beating for a boy who built a bridge - is not something that can be written in a review. it is something that demands to be felt, imprinting itself right across my heart.

so im pretty sure that even an infinite combination of words
...more
Natalie
Aug 26, 2012 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Markus Zusak could write the iTunes User Terms of Agreement and I'd still read it. so yeah, pretty excited for this one!

EDIT omg people stop liking this please i can't believe i keep getting notifications for this review i wrote in HIGH SCHOOL (for context I'm getting my BA next month [also: i've been on this website for more than 6 years?? time is fake]) i mean i guess i'm glad you're all happy this book is finally coming out lol but the original statement in this review no longer s
...more
Kylie D
Well, what can I say about this book? I found it totally mesmerising! It took a while to get going, but suddenly you find you can't put it down!

It follows the lives of the five Dunbar boys, told from the point of view of the eldest Matthew, but it concentrates on the fourth boy Clay. After their mother dies and their father abandons them, the boys are left to raise themselves in the suburbs of Sydney. Markus Zusak tells a remarkable tale here, the bridge of the title being both physical and sym
...more
Hailey (Hailey in Bookland)
DNF @ 80%

I am so so SO sad about this but, I just had no interest in the story or the characters. I tried the audiobook because it's narrated by the author and I gave it a fair go but I just wasn't into it. I kept telling myself I should at least finish it but I found my attention wandering because I just wanted it to be done, and that's just a waste of precious reading (listening) time. I will definitely try and physically read this and see if maybe that experience will be better bu
...more
Phrynne
Oct 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 5000-books
First of all I must say reading this book is hard work. It is a history of a family presented like a patchwork quilt - a bit here and a bit there, jumping around from person to person, place to place and past to present. Concentration is the key.

Hard work does pay off however and this is a really beautiful book. As the story progresses Zusak's characters start to work their way into your heart and the pages just slip past as you begin to discover just what has occurred. Little things like why t
...more
Marissa
Jul 05, 2012 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: excited-for
HEY MARKUS. HEY.
WHERE'S THE BOOK MARKUS?
MARKUS. WHERE IS IT?


Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
UPDATE: $1.99 on Kindle US today 1/4/19

Well heck, I never did show my stained edge copy I got. Oh well, later!

I won an arc copy of this book in a pub giveaway!



I was really confused in this book, more so in the beginning until I got used to how this was being written. The Bridge Of Clay is a book I will have to revisit time and again to get all of the tidbits that we miss at times. Especially in a book like this; family, sorrow, hope, change, love, death. It's life. It's death. It's a family both past an
...more
Raeleen Lemay
May 23, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: young-adult
Read for Popsugar's 2018 Reading Challenge: A book about death or grief

It seems like most of my favorite authors have written one book I didn't enjoy. For Patrick Ness, it's The Rest of Us Just Live Here, for Andrew Smith it's The Marbury Lens, and for Markus Zusak, who has written two of my all-time favorite novels, it's Bridge of Clay.

I'm thoroughly disappointed that I wasn't able to enjoy this book even a little bit, because The Book Thief and I Am the Messenger are books I could read again and agai
...more
Tilly Booth
Jul 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*deep breath* I'm ready to write this review.

Markus Zusak is my all time favourite author and with Bridge of Clay he has just solidified that position further. I fell in love with his writing in The Book Thief and then The Messenger and now with Bridge of Clay. I always tell people that going into his book, don't expect them to be anything alike (except for extraordinary writing) because they are all so individual and different from each other, it's actually kind of amazing.

Bridge of Clay is a
...more
Hamad
Oct 08, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
“A murderer should probably do many things, but he should never, under any circumstances, come home.”

🌟 After 11 or 12 years of waiting, you’d think that the author will write the next big thing. Unfortunately he wrote the next big disappointment and I fell from this Bridge of Clay into a sea of disappointment!

description

🌟 Truth to be told, I wasn’t very interested in the synopsis but October was my Contemporary month and what is better to read than a novel by the highly acclaimed author of The Book Thief aka one of my favori
...more
Katie B
The only thing worse than not liking a book is knowing you are probably in the minority with that opinion. I'm left with a feeling of what did I miss? The plot is good but I just could never get into the writing style. I'll go sit in my corner alone now while everyone else has an amazing reading experience. This just wasn't the right book for me but I do hope others enjoy it.

I won a free copy of this book in a giveaway but was under no obligation to post a review.
Allyce Cameron
Jul 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Je-sus Christ. What a book. For anyone who was worried about this following up on that masterpiece The Book Thief, don’t be. It is amazing and beautiful and heart wrenching and a million other things that I can’t think of right now because I’m so overwhelmed. The first 50 pages or so were a bit confusing and hard to follow but once I got past that I was completely sucked in. Also a word of warning, find a nice private place for the ending, I read this on a plane and it pretty sure the man next to me th ...more
Warda
Put down for now. I’m not connecting with the story and I’m not in the right frame of mind for it either, since it’s such a slow book and requires more concentration and effort which I can’t give right now.

————————————

Buddy-reading with Sophie! ❤
Please be good! I cannot survive if this disappoints me.

--------------------------

About fuckin time!!! SO HAPPY ABOUT THIS NEWS! And it sounds beautifully heart-wrenching.
Brenda
Five Dunbar boys, the eldest was Matthew (who narrated the story), the fourth was Clay, who seemed to be the most sensitive and socially aware. The youngest was Tommy with Henry and Rory somewhere in between. They lived at 18 Archer Street in the suburbs of Sydney, where Matthew took over the job of caring for his brothers after their mother died and six months later their father left without a word. Their struggles were many, their ways of grieving all different.

Bridge of Clay tells of trage
...more
Kai
Mar 13, 2018 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
That only took, like, a lot of fucking time. But we have a release date.
PattyMacDotComma
5★
“Many considered us tearaways.
Barbarians.
Mostly they were right:
Our mother was dead.
Our father had fled.

We swore like bastards, fought like contenders, and punished each other at pool, at table tennis (always on third- or fourth-hand tables, and often set up on the lumpy grass of the backyard), at Monopoly, darts, football, cards, at everything we could get our hands on.”


Zusak basically walks you up the steps of a houseful of boys with little intr
...more
Yusra  ✨
Jan 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yes, I know I just finished reading this last night but I can't get it out of my head! I tried reading another book and just missed Zusak's writing so here I am again. and I have a feeling I'll understand and appreciate the story a LOT more this time. here goes!!
--

So I’m sitting here, it’s 1am, and I don’t even have words.
Markus Zusak did something that I had lost all hope for.
He made me cry, real tears, while reading a book.
And what a book that was. What a book.
I
...more
Shirley Marr
Apr 30, 2011 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: aussie-ya
Okay, this space is just going to become a dumping ground of stuff I learn about Bridge of Clay until the book actually comes out and I read it, die and then come back to fill it with a proper review.

Update 20 Nov: From the Markus Zusak Facebook Fanpage Here (worth regularly stalking btw) Markus posts some excerpts from BOC as per below:


(Markus Zusak's own words)...here's a small piece or two from Bridge of Clay that I revisit regularly and work on:

PENELOPE<
...more
hayden
Mar 13, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
okay, i've read it.

what a disappointment. i loved the book thief, as did most people who have read it (even though i read it later than most), and expected something similarly powerful here. instead, i got an overly-long, self-indulgent, emotionally-void collection of pages.

from the beginning, the prose was very heightened and odd, full of strange, colory metaphors that had less an effect for me of adding anything substantial than of inundating me. i'd go through and pick out a well-seasoned section to quote, but it's
...more
Carolyn
This is a marvelous, rollicking tale of the five Dunbar boys, abandoned by their father after their mother died and now living alone in the family home with an assortment of animals. Told through the eyes of the oldest brother Matthew it mostly focuses on his younger brother, Clay and his exploits. The book is a little difficult to get into at first (and I did have to read the first chapter twice to get the rhythm of the writing) as it jumps around in time and many things don't have a significan ...more
Veronica ⭐️
*https://theburgeoningbookshelf.blogsp...
Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak was ten years in the making so I was expecting big things from this story and I wasn’t disappointed.

The story opens with Matthew, the oldest Dunbar boy, bringing home the old TW, the typewriter of a Grandmother they never knew.

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.


This/>Let/>Bridge
...more
leslie hamod
Jun 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing. I cannot recommend this book enough. Another triumph for Marcus Zusak! An incredible tale of five brothers and the love and hope between them.
A son different from all others, he follows his father's dream. He wants to build an almost impossible bridge across a most dangerous river. He works all day and many nights. He studied engineering from books. He never gives up. I concluded that this is congruent with the building of a moral and ethical framework.
He works most often al
...more
Umut Reviews
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finally we met with Zusak's new book after Book Thief. He's taken his time, but it was totally worth the wait! Bridge of Clay is about 5 brothers who live alone. Their mother died, and father left. They live in suburbs of Sydney alone. The story is told from the eldest brother's perspective, Matthew. But, the star of the book is Clay, the fourth boy, who is trying to build this bridge. The bridge is physical and symbolic. It takes you 50 pages to get into the book. Suddenly we're thrown into it ...more
may ❀
uhhhh what just happened?

you know that one book that makes zero sense 99% of the time and then you read one line and it all hits you and you're like WOW THIS IS AN INCREDIBLY CRAFTED MASTERPIECE?

yeah,,,,,that's not this book

- so this extremely extremely character driven book is about the dunbar family and basically it just follows their entire life from the father and mother to their five sons till the ~end~ and like that's that on that
- there are times when you //think
...more
Bianca
I'm probably one of the very few people on this planet who hasn't read The Book Thief or any other Zusak novel, so I had no particular expectations. Knowing how many people loved The Book Thief I wanted to find out if I'll become a Zusak fan myself, therefore I promptly requested this on NetGalley.

Man, oh man, how I struggled in the beginning. The first 50 - 70 pages were hard work, I considered giving up several times, especially dreading 400 pages of the same. I just couldn't get a grip, I c
...more
★ Jess
May 09, 2010 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dont-own
Edit: oh its been released lol

Edit:
This was originally going to be released while I was in year 10. Im about to start my second year at uni. Cool.

Edit:
Come on Markus. We were told this was going to be published on September 1, 2011. Wtf man.

EDIT:
CTUYHAJKLHDGNSKLHESBDNLGK>NMKSD>
Its September 1 today, and Zusak hasn't even finished writing the book! It still needs to be finished and edited and marketed and shit. I AM SO UNBELIEVABLY DEVASTATED. How can you do thi
...more
Sara
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Bridge of Clay follows five brothers as they face abandonment from their father, and the ultimate quest for forgiveness and what it means to be a family. Oh, and building a bridge.

I found this really difficult to read, and I’m unsure if it’s a case of ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ or the other way round. I bought The Book Thief when it was first released (I have the hardback first edition floating around at my mother’s house somewhere)
...more
Cori Reed
Oct 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is easily one of the best books I have read this year. The writing is phenomenal. It's a quiet story about family and forgiveness that I will not be forgetting any time soon.
Lou
Oct 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bridge of Clay is acclaimed, prize-winning author Markus Zusak's long-awaited follow-up to the spectacular The Book Thief which was first published in 2006, and while it wasn't as enjoyable as that, there is still much to admire about it. I cannot see it as being as successful, but it will appeal to those who delight in Zusak's inimitable writing style. The story follows the lives of the five Dunbar brothers who live at 18 Archer Street, Sydney, in a house without adults. It charts their struggl ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
#ikleesmee: Algemeen topic + Planning (Spoilervrij!) 43 85 Oct 21, 2019 01:03AM  
Support Group for People Who Loved the Book 9 96 Oct 15, 2019 08:01PM  
#ikleesmee: WEEK 1: begin - deel 4 [spoilers] 30 39 Oct 14, 2019 10:29AM  
Goodreads Choice ...: Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak - February 1, 2018 61 149 Mar 30, 2019 05:43AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Boy Swallows Universe
  • The Lost Man
  • Any Ordinary Day: Blindsides, Resilience and What Happens After the Worst Day of Your Life
  • Unsheltered
  • The Erratics
  • The Arsonist: A Mind on Fire
  • Nine Perfect Strangers
  • The Year of the Farmer
  • The Clockmaker's Daughter
  • Scrublands
  • Transcription
  • The Land Before Avocado
  • The Rosie Result (Don Tillman, #3)
  • Once Upon a River
  • The Nowhere Child
  • Normal People
  • Where the Crawdads Sing
  • The Pearl Thief
See similar books…
32,639 followers
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 the most successful authors to come out of Australia.

To date, Zusak has held the number one position at Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, the New York
...more
“There are hundreds of thoughts per every word spoken, and that's if they're spoken at all.” 18 likes
“A murderer should probably do many things, but he should never, under any circumstances, come home.” 15 likes
More quotes…