Review Detail

4.7 1
Young Adult Fiction 1501
Overall rating
Writing Style
LIKE A RIVER GLORIOUS was everything I hoped it would be. It had me on the edge of my seat and I stayed up till 4 in the morning to finish. I didn’t even realize what time it was until I put the book down and looked at my clock. This book absolutely, 100% sucked me in until the last page. And boy was it an amazing and scary journey, but it was worth every bit of lost sleep. LIKE A RIVER GLORIOUS is a historical fiction set in the Gold Rush era. The story follows Leah Westfall who for reasons unknown can sense gold. This is the second book in the trilogy, and picks up with Leah and friends settling down in California, trying to find a good mining spot. Because of her ability, Leah’s Uncle Harim has been after her and he won’t stop until he gets her.

What I loved:
Now I’m not usually one for Historical fiction, it’s just usually not my style. But every once in awhile I come across one that I absolutely love. When I read Walk on Earth a Stranger when it first came out, I was blown away by how much I liked it. So I was a little apprehensive going into this one because I didn’t think she could do better than the first one. Boy was I wrong. Because not only did this book blow me away but I would say that it is way better than the first, and that’s saying something because I loved the first one. The entire set of characters. Leah and Becky, Jefferson and Major, Jasper and Henry. Every single one of them I absolutely loved. Not to mention how much they want to help Leah. How much they wanted to protect her. It was evident that even though she lost her mama and daddy she still had family around her. Now the way Rae can write characters I just fall in love with, she can also write characters I absolutely loath. Like Frank Dilley, and Harim Westfall. Those two men made me so angry. The way they treated Leah and the way they treated those they deemed “less” than them. Uhhh so much anger. The way Rae made the simplest thing set you on edge with certain characters. Just an amazing job at make these characters come to life. Making them jump off the page and really feel something for each and every one of them.
Seeing Leah grow as a character, learn to trust those around her, and watching her power grow was one of my favorite parts. She is an amazing character who didn’t give up no matter how bad things got. I love women who are fighters and Leah very much was one. One thing I loved about Leah, was she wanted to ride horses, shoot, hunt, pan for gold, and work but she also wanted to wear dresses and be a girl. I loved that. I loved that everyone in her group excepted that. They let her be who she wanted to be. Especially Jefferson. I absolutely adore Jefferson. The slow burn romance between him and Leah was amazing. I loved seeing them interact. The way they just trusted each other and you could see the love they had. My especially I loved that Jefferson never cared that Leah wanted to do “man” things. He just told her to be careful and had her back. It’s definitely the kind of romance I look for in a book, but it also wasn’t the sole focus and I liked that it wasn’t. I liked learning more about Leah. About what she wanted in the world for herself.

One thing that was hard to read was the treatment of Native Americans, the Chinese, and African Americans, seeing how they were treated always made me tear up. I felt horrible for the way they were treated, you don’t read a lot of it in the book, but it’s there and every time it’s a punch to the gut. But Rae did an amazing job writing about it. Making it apparent in the words and the content the way these men, women, and children were treated.

What left me wanting more:

There wasn’t really anything that bothered me about this book. There’s bits where it lags and then picks up and then lags and then picks up. It actually takes a bit before the real action starts. Despite that I never once found myself becoming bored with the story. The more I learned about the characters the more I wanted to keep reading. Not to mention the fact that I wanted to know what Harim was up to. It may have been a bit of a build but it was worth every page.

Overall, Rae did such an amazing job with this book. It was beautiful and hard to put down. LIKE A RIVER GLORIOUS is probably one of the best historical fictions out there and one of the best I’ve ever read. I can’t wait to see where the next book takes us and just how this amazing series will end. Beautiful and moving LIKE A RIVER GLORIOUS is a book that every one should read.
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