The Secrets of Love Story Bridge by Phaedra Patrick
Publication date: April 28, 2020
Pages: 336 pages
Genre: Contemporary fiction, British fiction
Rating: 3.5/5 stars ✰✰✰✰
Strengths: Heartwarming plot
Weaknesses: Flat characters
What a sweet story! A 30-something widower is raising his daughter on his own in a small apartment in the city, so he can be close to the menial job he's taken so he has more time to devote to her. Instead of being the architect he was trained to be, he now cuts the padlocks that are tributes off the bridges he used to create. The locks may be sentimental to those who hang them there, but they're unsightly and heavy to the fences and structures they cling to.
His whole perspective starts changing after a woman falls into the river beneath one of the bridges as he's rushing to pick up his daughter. Being the only one to see her fall over the edge, he feels he has no choice but to jump in and rescue her. This one action leads to a new view of the padlocks, then new relationships and changes to how he interacts with those people he's known his whole life.
While the story eventually worked to its happily-ever-after, there seemed to be several different ways it could get there, so finding out the real ending was a joy. Unfortunately, several of the characters just felt like place-holders to me. The story was the real draw of this book. Overall, I'd give this one 3.5 out of 5 stars. It was a great pick-me-up story and a distraction without requiring a lot of my attention to untangle the story, characters, or relationships.
Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for my advance e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.