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The Resource The Bridge of Sighs, Olen Steinhauer

The Bridge of Sighs, Olen Steinhauer

Label
The Bridge of Sighs
Title
The Bridge of Sighs
Statement of responsibility
Olen Steinhauer
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Member of
Storyline
Pace
Tone
Writing style
Review
  • /*Starred Review*/ In 1948, in an unnamed Eastern European country behind the lowering iron curtain, Emil Brod reports for work as a homicide detective in the People's Militia. Fresh from the academy, his first day is a punch in the balls—literally. His new colleagues hate him, and he has no idea why. Forced to beg his boss for work, the case he is finally given is a political time bomb that seems certain to end his career before it's even started. But tenaciously, and despite frequent bodily injury, he persists, following clues that lead him to a rich widow's arms, to a Communist Party untouchable, and finally back to the events of World War II. It's hard to believe this is a debut: Steinhauer marries deft plotting with creative characterization and sets the union in a vividly re-created milieu. The case—a famous composer has had his head bashed in, possibly over a blackmail plot—is complicated by personalities, politics, geography, and the uncertainty of a torn continent trying to sew itself back together. Particularly inspired are the scenes set in the rubble of West Berlin, during the Berlin Airlift, which evoke an atmosphere worthy of the newsreels minus the scratches on the film. Part mystery, part thriller, part spy story—entirely promising. For fans of Eric Ambler, J. Robert Janes, Martin Cruz Smith, and Alan Furst. -- Graff, Keir (Reviewed 09-01-2007) (Booklist, vol 104, number , p)
  • Set in 1948 in a small, unnamed Eastern European country devastated by WWII and still occupied by Russian troops, Steinhauer's promising debut introduces 22-year-old homicide inspector Emil Brod of the People's Militia. Brod's police academy training has prepared him for neither the rude reception he receives from his homicide comrades nor the difficult and risky assignment handed him as his initiation. The brutal murder of a moderately successful writer of patriotic songs enmeshes the bewildered Brod in an investigation hampered by his inexperience and lack of support from above as well as by other forces unknown but soon felt. Brod's trial by fire takes him through city and village, from small bars and tenements to streetwalkers and party officials. Steinhauer deftly presents minor characters, while he richly renders the country's travails as war is followed by occupation, suspicion, corruption and betrayal. The trail of murder, blackmail and wartime secrets even leads Brod to a divided Berlin, where he observes the non-stop activity at Tempelhof Airport during the Allied airlift. Perhaps the novel's weakest element is the amorphous Brod, though his appeal grows as the story progresses. One looks forward to Brod's developing into a fully realized character in future books in the series. (Feb. 28) Forecast: Fans of J. Robert Janes (who provides a blurb) in particular and of mysteries with totalitarian regime backgrounds in general should appreciate the authenticity the author brings from his experience as a Fulbright Fellow in Romania. --Staff (Reviewed January 20, 2003) (Publishers Weekly, vol 250, issue 3, p59)
  • In 1948, in a small, unnamed Eastern European country, homicide detective Emil Brod has been assigned a case that no one wants him to solve. To make matters worse, he's only 22 years old, this is his first case in the People's Militia, and his colleagues think he's a spy. The victim, a state songwriter, appears to have been blackmailing a politicos, a man formerly known as Smerdyakov the Butcher who has connections to the highest levels of the state and a past that includes wartime atrocities for the Nazis and then the Russians. In his attempt to uncover the truth, Brod soon finds himself battling a host of obstacles (including the murder of his best witness). At the same time, he finds himself attracted to the songwriter's wife, who becomes his lover and a possible victim herself. This is an intelligent, finely polished debut, loaded with atmospheric detail that effortlessly re-creates the rubble-strewn streets of the postwar period in an Eastern state "liberated" from German occupation by the Russians. Highly recommended for mystery collections.—Ronnie H. Terpening, Univ. of Arizona, Tucson --Ronnie H. Terpening (Reviewed December 15, 2002) (Library Journal, vol 127, issue 20, p184)
  • /* Starred Review */ It's 1948, and Emil Brod, newly graduated from the police academy at 22, is posted as a homicide cop to the People's Militia—a department that's as dysfunctional as pretty much everything else in Emil's unnamed little war-torn country. Vanquished and vanished are the despised Germans, leaving behind them, however, "a nation of cripples." Still, young Emil, whose idealism remains surprisingly intact despite deprivation and occasional bouts of despair, is excited as he reports for work on that first day. He looks forward to the job, seeing in it a longed-for opportunity to serve community and country. Unfortunately, the good feeling is transitory. Not only is the department a grim, grungy, seemingly purposeless place, but there's an almost palpable animosity directed at Emil in particular. For reasons he can't grasp, he's an alien presence regarded with icy stares. When he finally gets an assignment, it's a high-profile case no one else wants since it's so clearly a potential career-breaker. A popular, politically connected songwriter has been murdered, face and skull crushed with a wrench, apartment ransacked. Burglars? Emil soon decides against this obvious scenario in favor of something darker and more complex. In the days that follow, he collects the answers to a variety of gnarly questions—the reason he was consigned to solitary; the truth behind a desperate and shameful conspiracy; and some useful things about his own untapped, unexpected capacity for courage, loyalty, and love.Time, place, and cast are all richly evoked in a well-written, often gripping debut. (Kirkus Reviews, November 1, 2002)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
119730
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Steinhauer, Olen
Index
no index present
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Series statement
Eastern European crime series
Series volume
0001
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Police
  • Europe, Eastern
Label
The Bridge of Sighs, Olen Steinhauer
Instantiates
Publication
Contents
May2003
Control code
000023723552
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
1st ed.
Extent
278 p.
Isbn
9780312302450
Lccn
2002068127
Label
The Bridge of Sighs, Olen Steinhauer
Publication
Contents
May2003
Control code
000023723552
Dimensions
22 cm.
Edition
1st ed.
Extent
278 p.
Isbn
9780312302450
Lccn
2002068127

Library Locations

    • Lionel Bowen Library and Community CentreBorrow it
      669-673 Anzac Parade, Marouba, NSW, 2035, AU
      -33.938111 151.237977
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