It is very interesting, the bridge courses you can find online. Even though it takes a lot of time to uncover the best ones, it was definitely worth the trouble. They are excellent. The quality of the courses are so good, you may not even need a beginner bridge book.
Bridge World – Introduction to Bridge – A very interesting course. It is from *the* bridge magazine. Although it is an introduction only, since it is from a very reputable sources, it has a level of authority on the matter.
For Bridge Players – Bridge Basics – Another interesting find. It seems this is a series of lessons for bridge, put up for anyone to find and use. Especially good in this one is that there are questions and quizzes at the end of each page.
Contract Bridge Course with Michael Furstner – I have saved the best for last. If you are going to use only one online bridge class, this is the one. This is a very extensive 24 lesson source that covers the entire gamut of bridge, including the different systems and types of bridge.
From this series you can see there is plenty of resources out there for people looking to play bridge.