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The Bridge

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4.14  ·  Rating details ·  759 ratings  ·  194 reviews
Two teenagers, strangers to each other, have decided to jump from the same bridge at the same time.

Aaron and Tillie don't know each other, but they are both feeling suicidal, and arrive at the George Washington Bridge at the same time, intending to jump. Aaron is a gay misfit struggling with depression and loneliness. Tillie isn't sure what her problem is -- only that she
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Hardcover, 395 pages
Published September 1st 2020 by Scholastic Press
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Bill Thank you for this question. The book definitely does not glamorize suicide, so in that way it probably wouldn't trigger a depressed person to jump. A…moreThank you for this question. The book definitely does not glamorize suicide, so in that way it probably wouldn't trigger a depressed person to jump. Also, it has been endorsed by the Mental Health organization To Write Love on Her Arms because of its authentic depiction of depression. Triggers are tricky and one never knows what will trigger a person, but every possible care has been made to make this a book about options beside jumping and reasons to stay another day. Also, there is a resource section at the end of the book.(less)

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Average rating 4.14  · 
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Bill
Aug 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Oh, this book.

THE BRIDGE took me two years to write, and they were hard years! I truly believe I was at the edge of my ability the whole time, doing things that were quite possibly beyond me.

And I loved the process! Except when I hated the process. :-)

My hope was to write a book about suicide and depression that was so real you could feel it in your bones, but that also felt hopeful, that left the reader with a sense that there was hope, because to me that's everything..I wanted to do that by
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Snjez
Sep 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This was such an amazing story, complex, emotional and very thought provoking. The concept of the book was fantastic. I loved how the author handled the subject matter and I loved the overall message of this story, including the author's note at the end of the book.

I'm keeping this review short because there's not much I can say without spoiling anything. I feel the blurb gives just the right amount of information.

I started off listening to this on audio, but I switched to ebook at around 20%.
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AnnaLuce
4 ½ stars

The Bridge by Bill Konigsberg took me by surprise. While I did enjoy reading two of Konigsberg's previous novels, Openly Straight and The Music of What Happens, they certainly didn't affect me as The Bridge. This is the kind of novel I wish had been around when I was sixteen and contemplating suicide.
While there are quite a few novels that expand on 'what if' scenarios, Konigsberg's diverging timelines are far from gimmicky. The first scene in The Bridge, regardless of its different ou
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Larry H
Sep 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars, rounded up.

Bill Konigsberg's new YA novel, The Bridge , is an emotional, eye-opening look at teenagers, depression, and suicide.

Aaron can’t take it any longer. He’s tired of not feeling like he’s good enough or talented enough. He’s tired of wondering if he’ll ever find a guy to love him, tired of putting himself out there and getting little in return.

One day, he goes to the George Washington Bridge and is ready to end it all. And there he sees Tillie.

Tillie is at the end of her ro
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Lisa  (not getting friends updates) Vegan
This book is extraordinarily difficult for me to rate and review. Most of the time I really liked it so it’s 4 stars from me.

There are 4 sections/alternative stories. In the first Tillie commits suicide, in the second Aaron commits suicide, in the third they both do, and in the fourth neither do. My favorite section was the last, though at a few times I got bored because by then there was some repetition. The third part was my least favorite, partly because part of it became speculative fiction
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Skip
Nov 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
Drawing from his own experiences with depression and attempted suicide, Konigsberg writes the story of two NYC teens, who cross paths on the George Washington Bridge where each intends to commit suicide. Aaron is a scholarship student at the Fieldston School and Tilllie is a wealthy student at the Spence School. Each has a number of problems, with parents and a lack of friends, leading to this momentous moment. There are four separate stories: one where Tillie jumps, one where Aaron jumps, one w ...more
Tzipora
Two different teens- a boy and a girl, one gay, one straight, one white, one Korean- end up at the George Washington bridge at the same time to commit suicide. What follows is an exploration of possible outcomes- if she jumps but he doesn’t, if he jumps and she doesn’t, if they both do, and if neither do.

I like stories like this with alternate timelines and getting to explore different options. It works especially well with suicide- exploring and teaching a lesson of sorts without being remotel
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Samantha (WLABB)
I loved Konigsberg's approach to this book. It was very thought provoking seeing the different chain of events kicked off in each scenario. I liked the emphasis on human connection, but what I really connected with was when the characters talked about "the mask". How often does someone ask you, "How are you?" and they really want to know? Someone dealing with depression often has to wear a mask, say they are fine. Konigsberg discussed this and how exhausting it is to keep up appearance, while ac ...more
Wendy Poteet
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I just finished reading a draft of this and...WOW! I cannot wait for this to hit shelves and get into people's hands. Bill's character development and storytelling are top-notch. I fell in love with Aaron and Tillie. They broke my heart over and over but I never stopped pulling for them. ...more
The Nerd Daily
Sep 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Originally published on The Nerd Daily | Review by Ankara C

Published on September 1st, The Bridge is Bill Konigsberg’s latest novel. His new work revolves around how suicide affects every aspect of not only one’s existence, but also that of others. Talking about suicide usually involves people wondering what could have been done different and how would a person’s death affect the people around them. Bill Konigsberg does exactly that, but taking it a step further. He offers the reader all the pos
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Marieke du Pré
This book felt like a punch in the gut because it felt very personal to me. It not only describes the feelings of Tilly and Aaron but also of their parents, their friends. If you’ve been there once, having family or a friend who tried or actually committed suicide then this is a story you should read.

So, The bridge. When I read the foreword, a letter from Bill Konigsberg, I immediately cried. I knew it would be hard to read the story. But I’m so glad I did. Because this is not only a story about
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Sheena
Aaron and Tillie are two strangers who decide to both jump off the George Washington Bridge. There’s four parts to the book, one we’re Tillie jumps and Aaron doesn’t, Aaron jumps and Tillie doesn’t, both of them jump, and then neither of them jump.

The mental health and suicide rep was done very well. It felt pretty accurate. Other themes are tackled such as sexuality, parental neglect and adoption, bullying, and the general feeling of being alone and that no one cares for you. I really do love
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Nik Leasure
Aug 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Konigsberg has given us a story that includes all the elements of an intricate time travel story, including diverging timelines, without a time machine in sight. In a way, depression is a time machine. It holds us down in a single moment and forces us to live within that moment; it expands in one’s mind and fills every aspect of your being until you are forced to expel it from your body in one way or another. For those with suicidal ideation, that moment can be your last, and the act is the way ...more
Kal ★ Reader Voracious
✨ You can read the first 18 pages in the I Read YA exclusive excerpt!
"It feels spiritual, almost. This skin, these organs.Alive, unalive. The fine edge between the two. It could have hap-pened so easily. He knows it."<?i>
Thank you so much for the YALLWest 'This American Experience 2.0' panel for getting this book on my radar! I don't often read contemporary, but hearing Bill talk about this book and how much it means to him resonated with me. I need more stories with depression repr
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Barbara
This important novel is a 4.5 for me, and yes, Bill Konigsberg, it's clear that you poured your heart and soul into this one. I've loved every book that this man has written because of the humor and honesty in each one, and this book is no exception. But oh, how hard this one hits. Aaron Boroff has had one of those days, topped off by a dismissive comment about his singing, and he's come to the George Washington Bridge to end it all. He's through with trying and through with life. But to his sur ...more
Pablito
While I am not generally a fan of alternate narratives, I became less hooked on the four outcomes of Tillie and Aaron's suicidal dances, and more intrigued with the ripples.

Overall, this is not a depressing tome, and yet it exposes how a single decision can alter and impact the lives of others for decades after that decision. It also reveals how sometimes one overture can radiate into a life-long trajectory. So yeah, the process of living out the alternatives is what makes each of the four ways
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Bill Silva
Sep 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
An important and necessary YA novel that addresses teen suicide and mental health in a compelling and different way--the structure of the novel is innovative and it mostly works. Some characters and situations are more believable than others, but the author successfully (for the most part) avoids trite or unrealistic storytelling, and his message--while obvious--is a profoundly meaningful one. It is a pretty narrow slice of life that is depicted here--but I think many young adult readers will be ...more
Charlize A.
Nov 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Whoa. This story was gritty, funny, and so incredibly complex... but most of all? It was REAL. Heartachingly, makes-you-think-about-the-world real. It wasn’t sugarcoated at all (which I loved), and it opens your eyes to another point of view. Not one where the main character gets all their wants and desires— one where life was just too hard to live in.
I also though it was innovative of the author to add multiple endings to this scenario.
Wendopolis
Sep 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
Good, but I was unable to read Aaron’s lyrics because they were light grey and practically invisible on the page. Bad move.
Sacha
Feb 11, 2021 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars

This is a comprehensive and challenging view into a heart rending and ever timely subject: teen suicide/suicidal ideation. There are two central characters, and readers go through scenarios in which each completes suicide and neither does. The characters’ impacts on others are also prominent throughout.

Konigsberg is a master of contemporary YA, and this novel reflects an even more ambitious approach than his previous works. It is an incredibly painful read because of its subject matter
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Molly R
Nov 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book was amazing! I really loved how the author played out each outcome. The Bridge is beautifully written and I strongly recommend it.
Celeste
Jan 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
Loved the approach to this very important topic.
Gregory
Nov 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
If you’re looking for a YA novel which explores suicide and its aftermath, by all means pick this over 13 Reasons Why. Konigsberg has done a terrific job at not glamorizing the struggle of two unrelated teens who find themselves simultaneously on the George Washington Bridge one afternoon, contemplating taking their own lives. I don’t know when I’ve seen a more accurate portrayal of bipolar disorder emerging in adolescence.
Nancy
Nov 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I listened to this book so being able hearing the characters’s voices was a plus for me. This book was recommended by a friend. As a result of that I really had not read any reviews or summaries of this book. I was surprised when when story ended and another one started. My husband and I often talk about what would have happened if...how people start of one way and through circumstances and chance meetings our lives are changed, like a tree and their branches. This book gives the reader the four ...more
Belle Ellrich
Sep 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
*I WAS PROVIDED A PHYSICAL GALLEY BY THE PUBLISHER IN RETURN FOR MY HONEST REVIEW. THIS DOES NOT AFFECT MY OPINION*

I requested this book from Scholastic as a sensitivity reader. Before sending my request through, I really had to think it over if I was ready or not for something like this. Was I willing to put myself through that experience of feelings and emotions again? As I am an empath, I oftentimes take people's emotions as my own and understand just too much what they're feeling. But I work
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Jay DeMoir
Sep 26, 2020 rated it liked it
Wow! Just wow! This book really pulled out all the stops and had me in my feelings. often times when I've been depressed, the thought that no one would care if I were dead or alive floated across my mind...more than a few times.

Reading this book by KING Bill reminded me that "That's a lie!" someone would care...it would affect someone. Depression makes our brains turn on us in ways that shock us once we've come from under the dark cloud. this book reminded me to be patient with myself and breat
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Kamden
Jul 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Important for everyone to read.
Emily Forsyth
Sep 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book could be SUPER triggering for anyone who has ever struggled with suicidal thoughts/depression. But this book was so good holy shit
Roger Hyttinen
Dec 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I'm a massive fan of Bill Konigsberg, so I was very excited to learn he was coming out with a new book. This was certainly an intense and quite a raw read.

It follows two teens, Aaron and Tillie, two strangers but who end up on the George Washington Bridge at the same time with the intention of jumping. Aaron is gay and suffering from depression, and Tillie has just been ghosted by her boyfriend and has been publicly humiliated in an online bullying event. So there are four scenarios that could p
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Paul Manytravels
Every author brings a different strength to his writing. Some excel at plot, others at creating atmospheres, some at structure, other at beautiful and lyrical language. Readers enjoy each of these strengths, sometimes preferring books with one of these over the others.
I prefer authors who are able to “get into the heads” of their characters, developing rather than describing characters. Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky do this superbly, of course, but in this book, so did Konigsberg. Konigsberg thoroughl
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Bill Konigsberg was born in 1970 in New York City. Expectations were high from birth - at least in terms of athletics. His parents figured he'd be a great soccer player, based on his spirited kicking from inside the womb. As it turned out, the highlight of his soccer career was at Camp Greylock in 1978, when he was chosen for the Camp's "D" team. There were only four levels. Bill played alongside ...more

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