Thursday, November 10, 2011

Review: String Bridge by Jessica Bell

3 out of 5 Stars

String Bridge is an emotional, women’s fiction novel about a musician, Melody Hill, who gave up her music for her husband and daughter, and is now struggling to find out how to regain her sense of self and a life that includes the music she loves. The novel is chock-full of honesty, and is written with emphasis on the feeling, the musicality, and the genuineness of the written word.

String Bridge, for me, was a 3 star read. It’s an interesting book, with unique characters who make you want to read on. However, there are just too many little flaws that prevent it from jumping all the way to a 5.

String Bridge does an excellent job at capturing the realness, the grittiness, the musicality, and the occasional chaos of a musician/struggling woman’s mind. It lets you really see and feel what Melody is going through, and come to intimately know her many weaknesses. However, I did occassionaly find this emphasis muddled up my reading, when certain strings of jumbled thought seemed unnecessary and confusingly added to everyday life. This, though irritating, can be easily overlooked.

What I could not overlook, unfortunately, was that so much of the novel's events happened too coincidentally. If Melody wanted to talk to a friend, she would never have to wait more than a few minutes before that friend magically appeared online. When she’s looking for a way into the music world, the most perfect opportunity—one most people who’ve worked at it for years couldn’t even dream of—miraculously appears in the form of someone from her past. Even the way things get screwed up happen in perfect time, but there’s always something that happens right on track to get her back to somewhat normal, and the people in her life seem to give her many more chances than anyone would get in the real world. But, if you can manage to suspend reality and look at Melody's emotions as the connection to real life and many of the coincidental events as pure fiction, String Bridge can become the compelling piece it's meant to be.

For a review of the soundtrack, On the Other Side, Click here

Jessica Bell is a literary women's fiction author, poet and singer/songwriter who grew up in Melbourne, Australia, to two gothic rock musicians who had successful independent careers during the '80s and early '90s.

She currently lives in Athens, Greece and works as a freelance writer/editor for English Language Teaching publishers worldwide, such as HarperCollins, Pearson Education and Macmillan Education.

In addition to String Bridge, Jessica has published a book of poetry called Twisted Velvet Chains. A full list of poems and short stories published in various anthologies and literary magazines can be found under Published Works & Awards, on her website.

From September 2012 Jessica will be hosting the Homeric Writers' Retreat & Workshop on the Greek island of Ithaca, home of Odysseus.


  1. Thanks for the honest insights Gina. I'm not a fan of coincidence either; I'm sure I'll still check out the novel. Jessica is an intriguing author person.


  2. Great review, honest and insightful... not my favorite genre, but a nicely written review.