Book Review: The River

the river cover

I recently read The River, which is a new book by the well-known author, Beverly Lewis. I have read several of her books previously, and this one is another good novel. Set in the heart of Amish county in Pennsylvania, two sisters who left the Amish return to their family to visit their ailing father.

Played out in only about a week’s time, this novel follows the sisters as they return to Amish county for the first time since their departure years before. They face judgment and many unanswered questions, and have to deal with family and friends they had been completely cut off from since their departure.

The book was well-written, as can be expected with Beverly Lewis. However, usually when I am reading her novels, I can’t set the book down. It took quite awhile to get to this point with The River, but I was eventually hooked. It does start out a bit slower than some of her other novels, but it is a great read.

If you have read Amish literature before, this would be a great book to read. I found there were less explanations of Amish culture in this novel than in previous ones. But ultimately this novel is more about facing unanswered questions from the past and dealing with reconciliation with grace, more than Amish culture.

Overall, I would say The River is a good book, but not an outstanding one in its genre. It is well worth reading, and the story is engaging and has a strong plot line. However, it doesn’t stand head and shoulders above other novels in its genre. And it just doesn’t quite compare to some of her other novels.

I would recommend this novel to people who already read Amish fiction and love it. Even though it isn’t one of my favorites, it is still a good book and includes many great elements of Amish life. Furthermore, it highlights some of the struggles former Amish go through after leaving the faith, with an emphasis on their relationships with Amish friends and family.


I received a free copy of this novel from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated for my opinions.



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