Thursday, May 30, 2013

The One- Way Bridge by Cathie Pelletier



They say you can't judge a book by it's cover. But when it comes to: The One-Way Bridge by Cathie Pelletier, this eye-catching, inviting cover comes with a thoroughly entertaining story!
  
I'm a newcomer to Cathie Pelletier's work. In case you are too, she is the award-winning author of 10 novels and grew up in Maine. She is also an accomplished songwriter. 
 
The One-Way Bridge is her first and much-anticipated novel in six years and is set (as are many of her other books) in the imaginary small town of Mattagash, Maine.
 
 
 
From the Amazon product page:
 
Welcome to Mattagash, the last town in the middle of the northern Maine wilderness. The road dead-ends here, but Mattagash's citizens are fiercely proud.
Yet this simple town connected by a single one-way bridge is anything but tranquil. While neighbors bicker publicly over trivialities such as offensive mailbox designs and gossip about suspicious newcomers, they privately struggle to navigate deeper issues—scandals, loss, failed ambitions, the scars of war...and a mysterious dead body in the woods.
With her trademark wit and keen eye for detail, Pelletier has assembled an unforgettable cast of endearing and eccentric characters, from scheming mailmen and peeping toms to lovesick waitresses and loggers whose underhandedness belies their ingenuity. The citizens of Mattagash will make you laugh and cheer for them as they stumble into one another's lives and strive to define themselves in a changing world that threatens to leave them behind.
The One-Way Bridge is an extraordinary portrait of family, loneliness, and community—and the kinds of compromises we all make in the name of love.
 
 
***
 
What really stood out in this story for me were the characters. They literally jump off the page. You feel like you know these people. Sharing their joyful moments, sometimes painful memories, their dreams, expectations, losses...
 
There's Orville Craft, the soon to be retired, quirky, postal delivery man. Billy Thunder, a bad-boy, small-time hustler; who is hiding out in Mattagash after he's written one too many bad cheques in the big city. Harry Plunkett, who owns the mailbox featured on the cover and has several long-standing  "bones to pick" with Orville. Beautiful Blanche, owner of the town's café. The place where the townsfolk like to gather to catch up with the latest gossip. Blanche also has a secret admirer. Just a sampling of who you will meet in Mattagash, after you cross the one-way bridge into town.
 
There were many, many LOL moments in this story and memorable, touching and poignant passages too. What is seen on the outside is often not the complete story as we share the secrets, regrets and aspirations of the residents of Mattagash as they await the first snow of winter.
 
This was the first novel I've read by Cathie Pelletier but it certainly won't be my last. I'm looking forward to another visit to Mattagash, Maine and in the near future. I read The One-Way Bridge in a couple of days; it's that kind of book. Hard to put down and satisfying from the first page to the last.
 
 
Overall rating for this book: Excellent. 5 out of 5.   

12 comments:

  1. Oh that sounds like our nearby small town...always fun, unless you are the subject of the gossip.

    Going to see if my library has this book.

    Jen

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    1. Yes, familiarity can be a good thing but not always. There is definitely a lot of gossip going on in Mattagash but a lot of positive things too. Let me know if you give this one a read!

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  2. Excellent review. Sounds like a good book to read. I like books that feature memorable characters and I love the cover too.

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    1. I was attracted by the cover first of all, it really does grab your attention. Then the story keeps your attention. A wonderful book!

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  3. The cover itself made me smile. Thanks for this excellent review, I will look out for this book.

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    1. I agree. And do let me know if you read this book Val. :<)

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  4. Sounds wonderful, entertaining and I won't forget the name, by the cover I thought she wrote children"s book I wrote one once, and sketched the drawings, and along with 6 books and poetry and photos it imploded, the first time it happened to me I broke a plate threw it against the wall...If it hadn't been for my cats 'cause it really scared them, I'm so naturally quiet that it frightened them and that is the ONLY reason why I didn't break all my dishes, I was beyond myself, but since this chemical imbalance of mine strikes all the time, I've stopped feeling empty, this imbalance of mine breaks all laptop so I know eventually this too will go, as well as vcr, tv, I don't wear watches anything electrical including clocks lamps and everything else has very very short life here except for books I can't break a book that's why I love them so much lol you"d think medication would take of that but it doesn't but it helps not to suffocate or drown in my own body, ...oh shut up I say to myself this is about a book, the only thing I can't break, yeah!!! I don't know why I feel the need to justify myself, "cause I really don't care what people think of me, and yet with you I constantly bring it up....you have to wonder about that...

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    1. It is a wonderful book Lorraine, I think you'd enjoy it. I'm not sure what you mean about your book implosion but I'm glad your cats weren't hurt. I know most cats hate loud noises etc...And no, you shouldn't feel you have to justify yourself with me or with anyone else. Definitely not with me. :<)

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  5. ha it does sound like a fun one...the cover made me smile....i like it when the author really develops the characters....makes them all the more real...might see if my wife wants to give this one a try

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    1. Cathie Pelletier has a true gift when it comes to developing characters. I think you'd enjoy this book Brian, and/or Tara. Let me know if you give it a read! :<)

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  6. Replies
    1. Is interesting! The cover caught my attention to begin with and then the story kept me turning the pages! :<)

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