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River's Edge

4.05  ·  Rating Details ·  233 Ratings  ·  37 Reviews
One extraordinary woman will come of age-and come into her own- in this haunting, elegiac portrait of an ever-changing America during the tumult and uncertainty of World War II. After the death of her mother, Elise Braun is sent to live with a new family in the United States and to start a new life. Her father only wants to save his daughter from the impending war in her ...more
Published September 1st 2006 by Kensington (first published January 1st 2006)
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Curtiss Matlock
River's Edge by Marie Bostwick is one of the best books I have read in a long time. The setting is pre-WWII through the war years in a small New England community, where they grow tobacco, of all things. It is a coming of age story, a building a new life story. Bostwick gives us characters we really care about, can relate to, and root for. She captures the place and times and people so thoroughly that the story lingered in my mind during the intervals between reading. Maybe it is because my ...more
Sherry Grussing
Mar 18, 2010 Sherry Grussing rated it really liked it
I really wasn't very interested in the book just by reading the back cover, but once I got into it, I really liked it. I've never thought of how displaced Germans were treated by Americans. This was an eye opener.
Amber G.
Jun 13, 2013 Amber G. rated it liked it
Spoiler alert...

---I really enjoyed a glimpse into life in the '40s and what things must have been like for everyone on both sides of the war.

Instead of describing trees and wind and water, it would have been nice to give more detail on what the houses were like, clothes, furniture, appliances, the town, etc. If we are being transported into the World War 2 era, it would be nice to read more substance in normal life. It felt unbalanced to have such detail of plants and trees, and not as much of
May 18, 2015 Fay rated it it was amazing
As has been true with all of the Marie Bostwick books I've read, I truly enjoyed this one. It is a romance, for sure, although it takes a while for that fact to show itself. The setting is along the banks of the Connecticut River, where coincidentally I grew up! That drew my interest, of course. The time period is from about 1939-1947. The central character, Elise Braun, is a German girl who's sent to live with the pastor of the small town of Brightfield (fictional). Her mom has died of ...more
Jun 02, 2015 Michele rated it it was amazing
I had read the Cobbled Court quilt series and really enjoyed it, so I decided to go back and read Bostwick's earlier books. Fields of Gold, her first book, was okay. It was well written, had a good plot but it didn't grab me and suck me in. It sort of lagged and dragged here and there. The book would have been great with about 15 pages less of details and such, I thought. I wasn't sure about this know the saying about the sophomore slump....nope, not at all. I got right into this ...more
Mar 14, 2009 Shawn rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-book
This is another story that takes place during World War 2, but it is a fictional account about a girl that is sent to America, to protect her from the war in Germany. It is an interesting story and I enjoyed reading about her life in Germany and her adjusting to American life in a small town in New England. She was wealthy in Germany, with servants, etc. and in America, she lives with a minister and his wife on a farm. That was the best part of the book. Near the end, it feels like the author ...more
Jul 02, 2013 Kate rated it really liked it
If I could rate this 4 1/2 stars, I would. I am a huge fan of historical fiction (if you need proof, just check out my 'read' list! LOL), and the WWII era is one of my favourite eras to read about. Most of the books I've read set in this period are about women 'holding down the fort' in the US while the men are off fighting. While this book definitely had some of that in it, it was more of a coming of age story. I really liked watching Elise grow from a girl who is unsure of her place in the ...more
Mirah W
Jul 29, 2011 Mirah W rated it really liked it
A great read. The only reason I'm giving it 4 stars instead of 5 is because I felt the ending was rushed...I wanted more details. But, even with that said, the story was still a complete one.
I enjoy books set during World War II and this one was very interesting and had a unique point of view. The characters were excellent and thoroughly developed...Elise was a terrific character to be the center of the story...she grew as a person throughout the book and I was cheering for her.
River's Edge is a
Sep 18, 2011 Judee rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a very moving novel. The story centers around Elise Braun who is sent by her military father to distant relatives in America in 1939. Elise has lost her mother to illness and now her father has sent her away to live with people she has never heard of in another country where the culture and the language are as alien to her as she is to them. The descriptions of her experiences and emotions are beautifully done. This book is a joy to read.
May 08, 2015 Suzanne rated it really liked it
I always enjoy reading historical novels. This is an account of an affluent German girl sent to live in a small New England town to remove her from the dangers of the war in her country. Having just lost her mother, she is dealing with many emotions.
I would have like more details about her father's mission in the war, and more description of her earlier life, but all in all, I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
Jul 02, 2013 Heather rated it liked it
Recommended to Heather by: LDS Ladies Bookclub
I enjoyed the writing style and the characters in this book. I think this author has a wonderfully descriptive style that feels almost poetic at times. The story was compelling and flowed nicely too. I thought it was a nice summer read because it is not too intense despite being set in war time. The sadness and more difficult themes were handled deftly and allowed the reader to dip into the emotion without getting overwhelmed. The heartwarming ending was nice too.
Mar 13, 2012 Connie rated it it was amazing
This book should be classified as historical, Christian Fiction. It is the story of a young German girl who is sent from her home in Berlin to live with distant relatives in America in the years prior to WW II. Her father, who is her only living parent, believes that she would be much safer living in America.

This account of the girl, the American family, and her German father, (who is in the German military) during World War II is both heartbreaking and heartwarming.
May 27, 2013 Nancy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Iza Ward
This is the LDS groups disscusion book for June 2013. I look forward to the disscusion. I really enjoyed this book. It took me back to my childhood days in the 1940s. I thought it was well written,and the characters were well developed. I liked the way Marie discribed the natural setting of the story.
Mar 14, 2008 Erin rated it it was ok
I don't know if I just wasn't in the mood for this book or what but I really struggled to get through the book and only made it about half way. It got good reviews from other readers so I was a little confused. I just couldn't really get into the book. Maybe I'll try reading it again someday. Until then my impression of it isn't that great.
Patty Skaggs
Aug 07, 2014 Patty Skaggs rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Rivers Edge was delightful.

Rivers Edge was delightful.

After reading Marie Bostwick's Cobbled Court Quilt Series, I discovered her earlier written books. This author is so very talented.
Nov 04, 2016 JayeL rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, 2013
I thought this book was entertaining. I also liked the characters and the way they developed within the story. This would be a good book to use in a a history class that covers World War II because it shows the home front during the war and what women and children had to do to survive.
Oct 23, 2009 Lisa rated it liked it
An enjoyable easy read set during WWWII. Elise is a German child sent to away to American to live safely with extended family while her father fights for Germany.

Appropriate for young adult readers.
Dec 20, 2011 Katrina rated it really liked it
I just love Bostwick. It was so nice to read another book by her. And this one was so different from her quilting series. I'm always a sucker for historical fiction and this one was very well done. Wonderful writing, seamless plot, and strong characters.
Dec 16, 2009 Julie rated it really liked it
This is a surprisingly good book about a young girl who is sent to America from Germany right before the start of WWII to live with distant relatives in Connecticut. A feel good book that I had trouble putting down.
Beth A.
I kind of had to push to get myself through this one. Even though it was a light and easy read. It had the backbones of a really good story, but it just lacked the depth to get me emotionally involved or attached to the characters.

My favorite character was Mrs. Ludwig.
Dec 04, 2012 Malia rated it it was amazing
I really felt for Elise. Coming to America at a time when Germans were ostricised, living with a new family with different manners, dealing with prejudices because of her home land. It was all so believable.

I enjoyed the ending.
Vicky Dierker
Jan 08, 2013 Vicky Dierker rated it really liked it
Starts slow, but a very powerful book about being a stranger in a new land, the power of love, and the gentle way God guides us even in our darjkest hours. This book takes place for the most part in a small town in New England during WW2.
Nancy Wilkinson
May 17, 2015 Nancy Wilkinson rated it it was amazing
Another great historical fiction book by Ms. Bostwick. I think she really shines writing historical fiction. She people's the past with her wonderfully deep characters and the reader gets a very dimensional view of the flat facts of the past. Always a good read.
Oct 31, 2007 Britta rated it it was ok
This book was a little tough for me to get through...a little too formulaic and predictable without being entertaining. Skip it and look for another.
Kathy Duncan
Aug 31, 2014 Kathy Duncan rated it it was ok
Loved the characters and story line. However, this early Bostwick's theme is clumsy, heavy-handed, and redundant. The message is delivered much more skillfully in her recent novels.
Sue (booknbeachbag)
I wish the book had dealt more with the reality of being German in the US during WWII than about... oh, whatever else it was about.
Gloria Bernal
Oct 25, 2009 Gloria Bernal rated it it was amazing
One of my favorites and an exciting discovery of a writer. Highly recommended, as is her "Fields of Gold" two wonderfully written novels.
Apr 01, 2016 Priscilla rated it liked it
This is Marie Bostwick's First book. Review coming up later :).... It was a good book. I read it fairly fast
Jan 06, 2016 Gaylee rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bostwick-marie
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I love this book because it takes me back in time. Elise was about my age at that time.
Marie writes some very good books and keeps you from putting the book down.
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Marie Bostwick is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of uplifting historical and contemporary fiction. She lives in the state of Connecticut and travels fequently to sign books, speak to reading groups, and meet her readers.
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