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The Bridge

In the late fall of 1964, soon after the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge was completed connecting the New York City boroughs of Brooklyn and Staten Island, Gay Talese's remarkable book The Bridge was first published. Talese, then in his early days as a reporter for the New York Times, followed the construction closely, on many occasions donning a hard hat and joining the workers on the catwalks of the iron beams. More than just the story of the famous bridge, Talese produced a tribute to those who built it and an absorbing drama of politics and courage, loss and achievement, which reminds us of the ways in which a man-made structure can affect myriad lives.

Almost forty years later, the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge remains, at two and a half miles, the longest suspension bridge in the United States--and The Bridge is finally available in paperback, introducing a new generation of readers to Talese's consummate skills as a reporter and storyteller. He paints a revealing portrait of the daring, hard-living, high-steel workers, and of the average families and tradespeople who were displaced by the bridge and its ardent champion, Robert Moses. Revisiting the places and people he encountered four decades earlier, Talese has added a lengthy and poignant afterword, bringing full circle the many dramas that make The Bridge a resonant story for our times.

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