I received a copy of THE RIVER QUEEN by Gilbert Morris, from B & H Fiction. I had never read a book by this author before, but after reading this, I know why he is one of the most popular Christian writers. His novel contained not only a fascinating setting and breath-taking action, but the characters are unique.
The story involves the Ashby family, although the main character is Julienne Ashby. Her family is prominent. She lives for fashion and suitors, but her wealthy world ends when her father learns they are broke. Shortly afterward, Julienne’s father perishes from heart trouble. The family is forced to surrender their home, plantation, and belongings. Then, Aunt Leah discovers that they still own an old riverboat. The once prominent Southern family decides to fix up the boat and forge a way of life on the Mississippi.
The action is really nonstop, but sometimes I felt a little overwhelmed and would have liked a breather. For example, toward the beginning, Julienne and her servant board a riverboat to take a trip. Then, only pages later, the boilers blow up. Julienne and Dallas, a handsome young man working on the boat, are the only survivors. Her maid is dead, and Dallas must take Julienne home. The whole incident felt rushed through. I could not savor the tension.
Overall, I enjoyed the book, and found the ending very satisfying. This story will appeal to fans of romance, historical fiction, and Christian fiction…or anyone who seeks a good, fast read.