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South of Bixby Bridge
 
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South of Bixby Bridge [Kindle Edition]

Ryan Winfield
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

Print List Price: CDN$ 16.09
Kindle Price: CDN$ 5.99 includes free international wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Product Description

Product Description

From New York Times Bestselling Author Ryan Winfield, a sexy and shocking literary debut.

What would you do if you weren't afraid? That's the question facing young Trevor Roberts as he's being discharged from drug rehab, sure that he's hit rock bottom with nowhere to go but up.

With more twists than California's Highway 1, the intimate narrative follows a young man on a wild month-long ride to the dizzying, drunken heights of Napa Valley excess where he falls fast for his new boss's intoxicating wife and becomes entangled in a strange threesome affair. But things soon begin to unravel as Trevor is drawn into a secret world of sex and scandal, only to have his lust for success drag him down again through a phantasmagoria of hedonistic hell.

"Shocking and unapologetic", South of Bixby Bridge barrels along with the "frenetic pace of a Hollywood blockbuster," delivering "poetic prose loaded with images". With gripping drama, witty dialogue, and sexy, jaw-dropping glimpses into the nouveau-riche underworld of California's wealthy elite, you won't be able to put this riveting new novel down. Buckle up and enjoy the read!

About the Author

Ryan Winfield is a 37-year-old novelist, poet, and screenwriter living in Seattle. From the author: I've been asked why I write. I write because I remember. I remember waking up to snow. Great buckets of it poured from the gray skies and blanketing everything in quiet white. I remember racing to dress, struggling with my boots. "Here, don't forget your mittens." I remember the soft thump of that first footstep in the cold and virgin powder, the tracks looking back, foghorns blowing on the mist-covered bay. I feel the canvas paper bag cutting into my shoulders, the weight of Sunday's headlines heavy on my mind. I see the trees bowed with armloads of white, as if to curtsey my passing. I remember rubber bands and ink stained hands. A car spun sideways in a ditch. Always a car. Then barking dogs, a distant chainsaw. Freckles throwing fastballs that hurt for the cold of them on my neck. I remember snowmen, and igloos, and icy trails through the white and wondrous woods. And I remember sweet Mrs. Johnson waiting at her door. The smell of Avon powder, her thin smile, an envelope pressed into my palm--ten dollars and a peppermint candy cane thank you. Evening now. I remember running downtown--Salvation Army bells, white lights strung in sidewalk trees, bundled shoppers bent against the wind. I remember the heavy door, the warmth, the wood. The bookstore! Smells of paper and leather and ink. Walls of worlds bound and waiting for me to read. Nothing has affected me as much as reading has. Dickens, Tolkien, and Lewis raised me. And while I've walked through my own hell, made my own mistakes, and found my own redemption, always there have been books. Books to help me escape, books to teach me when to stay and fight, books to help me see where I've been wrong and where I've been right. I write because I remember. And I write because I still dream.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 494 KB
  • Print Length: 299 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: B00701T8K0
  • Publisher: Birch Paper Press; 1 edition (Aug. 15 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005HISY0I
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #42,262 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning; this book will leave you breathless... June 19 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
I wasn't sure what to expect when I saw the advertisement for this book, but I'm so glad that I read it. I won't put any spoilers, but I will say that this story will move you to tears as you cheer for the survival of Trevor, the main character. Reading it was like a wild ride on a Ferris wheel. My legs were still wobbly well after I'd finished reading it. Absolutely amazing writer!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars what are you afraid of..? Oct. 10 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
"Everybody is afraid of something".. Whatever it might be it could drive you to self-destruction or make you stronger to conquer it..!.. In this nove, Ryan Winfield portraits an intense story about abuse, addiction,corruption, and betray. Trevor's life is a roller coaster of events and emotions, his personal and professional life is destroyed by alcohol and drug abuse, but he has to hit bottom and loose everything he owned twice to realize he needs help and begin a new journey to sobriety. I really like this book is well written and so vivid, very much recommended..!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  1,436 reviews
465 of 483 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's pure fantasyland but the author makes it believable. Dec 28 2011
By Linda Linguvic - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a Kindle book by a brand new writer that is a bargain at its $3.99 price. When I was making up my mind whether to order it or not, I looked at the reviews. Out of 117 reviews, 107 people gave it the highest possible rating. Naturally I was intrigued. And now that I've finished the book in just two days, I can understand what all the praise was about.

The main character is a young man who has trouble with drugs and alcohol. He's lost his house and his girlfriend, , has no money and has just gotten out of rehab. He copes the best way he can, resisting drugs, sleeping in his car and looking for a job. But soon, his life changes. He is given a job in a upscale investment firm by a very wealthy man and his life then takes on what seems to be in a positive direction. He is wined and dined and soon is earning an outrageous amount of big bucks and starts to live a lifestyle that is pure fantasyland. He is back on drugs and alcohol though and is even romancing the rich man's wife. Soon though, things start to fall apart.

The book is extremely fast paced. Something new happens almost every page. Once I started reading I was absolutely hooked. The young man's world became my own and I wallowed in the details of the over-the-top and decadent lifestyles of the characters. There is plenty of glitz and glamour and lots of titillation and the writing is so good that the reader cannot help but identify with the main character. There are twists and turns and lots of turmoil but in the end, things turn out for the best and the book ends on a positive and satisfactory note.

It's rare that a book captures my attention and holds so well. I literally could just not put it down. I am therefore happy to give it one of my highest recommendations.
121 of 125 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars outstanding debut May 21 2012
By Robin Landry - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I'm going to run out of adjectives to describe this book before I run out of review, but here goes. This is the kind of book that totally captures your imagination. Trevor kept me up all night because I had to see if he could get to his demons before they destroyed him completely. His demons, being alcohol, drugs--anything to help keep the terrifying emotions he keeps buried from surfacing.

This is the story of the pain of addiction--it's a story of what it means to be human. Trevor is the son of an abusive, alcoholic father, and a mother who tries her best to protect her son, and finally dies of cancer early in her son's life. Ryan Winfield gives the reader an up-close-and-person view of what happens when we bury pain so deep that even we can't see it. We can feel something, like the effects of a body in space on a planet that we can't see. We see the planet's wobble so we know something's there, but it's invisible to our eyes because it's too far away.

Trevor's pain so consumes his life until it takes more, and more of any numbing substance to keep it pushed down and out of sight. Fired as a money-manager because of risky behavior with money and his health, Trevor seemingly hits bottom when he nearly dies of an over-dose in a hot tub. After a stint in rehab, paid for by his girl-friend's mother, Trevor leaves still not knowing what his pain is, so of course he finds it all over again. This time he gets a job with a billionaire fund manager who uses Trevor again, only this time in a larger way that finally shows Trevor where bottom is.

Winfield does an excellent job of showing how what we don't bring out of the depths of our subconscious can destroy us, but he does it without any preaching. He does it in a stark and honest way that has to hit home for anyone who's ever used anything to bury a hurt from the past. I love the way Winfield uses his character's car to parallel what's happening to Trevor himself. Just as Trevor was given the gift of his body from his mother, so too was he given the gift of a Porsche. Trevor lives his car at times and even as he has to sell it to live, and then has it taken from him by Paul, the car represents Trevor's body. Life bangs it up, but there are always people to help mend the car, and Trevor himself when he lets them.

This is a brilliant debut from an exciting new author and I'll be waiting anxiously for his next work, though I have no idea how he's going to top South of Bixby Bridge.
98 of 106 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars R-rated for violence and sex March 2 2012
By N. Teeter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a very well written book as indicated by the large number off 5-star reviews. The author made me like the main character, Trevor, and that was the only reason I did not stop reading half way through when the content became very graphic. Instead, I kept reading because I wanted to know what happened to Trevor in the end, and I'm glad I did; however, this is a very disturbing book and several days after completing it, I am still haunted by the horrific images. The message of hope and perseverance is a good one and it's worth reading, but the reader should be cautioned about the graphic content. If this becomes a movie, it will be R-rated. I also agree with another reviewer who found the lack of conventional quotation marks to denote conversation frustrating.
80 of 90 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "South of Bixby Bridge" launches the career of a gifted writer. Oct. 13 2011
By Tierno - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you have not been to Hell and back it is hard to describe the journey. In his debut novel "South of Bixby Bridge" Ryan Winfield creates a vivid, sometimes painful, but always brutally honest portrait of the descent and climb that, like the rolling hills of Northern California lunge forward and then retreat and always provide surprises around the blind corners. Anyone who has hit bottom and tried to rebound will root for Trevor, a stockbroker fresh out of rehab trying to maintain his resolve to reclaim his life in a world determined to tempt and taunt him, and carrying the dark passenger of a past that haunts him and nearly broke him. There are no cliches here. Winfield carves sentences deftly and with laser-like precision. The depth and meaning of these paragraphs spring forward with crisp detail and vivid phrases so powerful you'll want to copy them to carry on a card in your wallet to read again and again. Early into the work I realize that this is not a derivative retread but fresh and new and at times shocking and unapologetic in showing the open wounds. Fans of John Steinbeck and Jack Kerouac have an author for the new century. This is a novel to put beside well-worn copies of Cormac Mccarthy whose prose is matched. I hope Winfield's next novel is in print soon. This is a writer to watch.
39 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A surprise favorite Oct. 3 2011
By mwb - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This assured, accomplished debut novel came to me recommended by friends whose opinions I trust, and I'm so glad I took a chance with it. Winfield delivers a step-sure voice, a keen eye for revealing details and for projecting movie scenes in your head, and a sense of humor that's natural and easy rather than labored and affected.

It's a crackerjack read (one day, two sittings for me), and a Gatsbyesque story for our Recessionary, "having a job is the new bonus" times. The plot takes numerous familiar turns and beats, but what raises "South of Bixby Bridge" above your typical "beach read" or "bus book" is the notable level of craft here -- from the way the narrative unfolds to the quick clip of the pacing to the careful beveling of Winfield's paragraphs and sentences. It's not just well-written, it's not OVERwritten, a common infirmity that would cripple a novel as polished and well-oiled as this one.

The deftly drawn narrator, Trevor, is already hardboiled and world-weary at 30, having been dragged across broken glass from before the first page. Yet (thankfully) Winfield doesn't fall into the trap of making him a conduit for merely lazy cynicism and attitudinous posturing, which would have had me putting the book down within 20 pages. There's a striking humaneness in Trevor and how he's portrayed. Sometimes it's laid on a bit transparently (e.g., his interactions with the old woman on the train), yet Trevor is so inherently understandable and authentic even when he reveals his worst facets that I found it easy to follow him from page to page, chapter to chapter, with an interest usually reserved for friends I know in life. That authenticity pervades the milieus and situations Trevor moves through (oh, just so it's noted: he's a character who takes action rather than is only acted upon), and there's a knowingness here that shows through between the lines. I have no idea how much, if any, of this story is autobiographical, but many times while reading it I got the sense that its author didn't just imagine what Trevor was going through, he bone-deep knew it and understood it well enough to convey it meaningfully.

Along with the writing on display, there's another level of quality here that's no small thing with me: "South of Bixby Bridge" exhibits professional production on all fronts. Far too often in these days of severe changes in publishing and distribution models available to writers, books reek of amateurism by their obvious lack of care in their editing (from basic English mechanics to the diligent sculpting of the prose), in their formatting/design, and their overall production values. I was relieved to find here a novel that respected me as a reader by serving up good, clean prose largely free from the sloppiness that can immediately stamp a writer as an amateur who didn't care enough to get the small stuff right. Unless Winfield is some superwriter prodigy, "South of Bixby Bridge" isn't a first draft slapped together and called "good enough" -- Winfield worked and honed and refined his novel, polishing it through I don't know how many drafts, taking it beyond "good enough" to as good as he could possibly make it. It reads like a pro effort, and it looks and feels like a pro effort. Having read (and judged for Writer's Digest) a large number of self-published and small-press books, that's such a significant factor with me that it delayed my taking a chance on cracking this book open. Now, however, I'd hold up this novel as an example of how to do it right from every vector -- from storytelling and character creation to editing/sculpting and finally production -- and as a positive example of what a good writer can do in this new publishing age that's been taking shape over the last two years.

Lest it not be clear by now, I'll pick up his next one without hesitation.
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We should trust people to be exactly what they have proven themselves to be, no more and no less. &quote;
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