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Time Is a River
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Time Is a River

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  4,605 ratings  ·  577 reviews
With a strong, warm voice that brings the South to life, "New York Times" bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe writes richly textured stories that intimately portray the complex and emotional relationships we share with families, friends, and the natural world. "Every book that Mary Alice Monroe has written has felt like a homecoming to me," writes Pat Conroy, bestselling ...more
Hardcover, 369 pages
Published July 8th 2008 by Pocket (first published May 1st 2008)
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Average rating 4.05  · 
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 ·  4,605 ratings  ·  577 reviews

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From the blurb:
With a strong, warm voice that brings the South to life, "New York Times" bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe writes richly textured stories that intimately portray the complex and emotional relationships we share with families, friends, and the natural world.
The tale contains all the elements to be a true southern charm. A wealth of interesting characters, cultural treasures and historical tidbits, but sadly combined with a overwhelmingly dollop of chick lit, brings forwar
Dec 22, 2014 rated it liked it
"My feelings have run the gamut from fury to hurt to finally just wanting to move on. That's the good thing about being at a place like this . . . I've had a lot of time to think about me. Not just about the divorce, but all that existential stuff, - my emotions, ambitions, beliefs. I've had the the rug pulled out from me in so many ways."

This book left me feeling a bit conflicted, with my emotions running the gauntlet: empathy, sorrow, joy, confusion, fury, and disappointment.

Mia's raw emotion
May 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This book is a July 2008 Indy Pick (aka BookSense)

This is a soothing and rare treasure of a book. Monroe has really outdone herself this time with the story of breast cancer survivor Mia Landan. After a year of surgeries, radical chemo and radiation, Mia is a ghost of who she once was--a socially polished public relations guru married to an equally driven and sophisticated lawyer. Mia's sister sends her on a 3 day weekend with Casting For Recovery (a real and very amazing group, by the way), a g
Dec 25, 2016 rated it liked it
I wasn't sure if I had it in me to finish this. Most of the first 100 or so pages were boring. There are two storylines and the one set in the early 1900s was the most interesting. At the halfway point, I decided to start skimming the pages, especially the descriptions of fly fishing. It was just okay overall.
Oct 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.  - Henry David Thoreau

Just as she recovered from a breast cancer rehabilitation, Mia receives another unpleasant surprise; the husband she expected to be supported by in that difficult moment cheated on her with his secretary. Devastated and ashamed, Mia escapes to the one place she feels s
Dale Harcombe
In some ways this was an enjoyable read. It was a book my husband picked up at the library and thought I might like. I was interested in the way Mia seeks to recover not only from the trauma of breast cancer but the infidelity of her husband. It was easy to feel empathy for her as she seeks to rebuild her self-esteem and her life. What was not so easy was the way she disregarded her friend Belle’s directive not to go digging into her family’s past. However, if she had not ignored Belle then you ...more
Jul 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
I thought that I had read all of Mary Alice Monroe's books but somehow I missed this one. I listened to it on a long drive and my involvement in this book made the miles fly by.

Mia is a breast cancer survivor on the physical side of recovery but still dealing with it from a mental and emotional standpoint. Her sister sends her to a survivor retreat in the NC mountains called Casting for Recovery, where breast cancer survivors learn to fly fish and connect with nature and each other as a means of
Feb 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013-reads
It has been some time since I've read a book as beautifully written as this one. The story is engaging, the words tumble effortlessly just as the river Mia fishes in tumbles down the mountain. The setting is lovely, the cabin is dreamy. The author makes mountain life even more enticing than I already feel it is. The friendships Mia builds are wonderful, her healing and growth are refreshing and Stuart is the quintessential romantic Scotsman. I didn't want this story to end, and it's been even lo ...more
Feb 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This was a great book. It spoke to me in ways no other book has. It is the story of a breast cancer survivor who makes a life for herself after her recovery, which is complicated by a divorce when her husband decides he no longer wants a relationship with her after the loss of her breast.

Mia landan is much more strong than she thinks she is. I really identified with her character because I had breast cancer 4 years ago. Mia and I both found out who our real friends were. True friends stick arou
Jul 18, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: women-s-fiction
Recovering from breast cancer and stil reeling from her husband's infidelity, Mia Landan seeks refuge in a friend's long-empty cabin near Ashville, North Carolina. As Mia cleans, she finds the journal of 1920s renown fly-fisherwoman Kate Watkins, her friend's grandmother. Mia learns of Kate's affair with a married man, and that according to local lore Kate has long been the prime suspect in his murder.
As Mia reads more of the journal, she becomes convinced that Kate is innocent. As she works to
Aug 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Angie by: Jesse Braswell
Shelves: southern-fiction
I could not stop reading until I finished this wonderful novel. The language, flow, mood, and themes speak to me. As I was reading I suddenly remembered and embraced another book by another author that equally drew me in. In the 1970's I read Norman Maclean's A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT, long before it was made into a movie. At the time I read Maclean's story I was deeply touched as it reminded me of how closely tied my life has always been to flowing bodies of water. To anyone who enjoys reading so ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kathryn by: Mamey
Shelves: 2016
Thank you Mamey for recommending this great book. It's a book of survival, growth, love, fly fishing and so much more. I thoroughly enjoyed the story.
Tammy Gillmore
Apr 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing

This is a novel I purchased one Friday evening during one of my stops at the local Wal-Mart to purchase what I am sure was a buggy-full-of-can't-live-without-items and when I was also in need of an escape from the land of education...then I proceeded to not read it for several weeks due to not being able to escape Educity.

Now back to the novel...Time Is a River.

This journey, written by Mary Alice Monroe, appealed to me because the main character is a breast cancer sur
Nov 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, 2008
wow. I love the satisfied, sated feeling I get after finishing a great book. This book gave me that feeling. It’s such a perfect blend of romance, intrigue and woman finding her self. That’s the kind of story I really like.

Mia flees to a remote cabin in the North Carolina mountains when her marriage fails. She’s recovering from breast cancer, learning how to fly-fish and discovering herself. And investigating the life of Kate Watkins, the woman who lived in the cabin, and according to town legen
Jan 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone,southern fiction lovers, fans of D.Benton Frank or Sue Monk Kidd
Shelves: read-in-2009
I loved this book. It is a beatifully written novel that is so much more than a romance novel. It is a story of a woman who has been at her lowest in life and finds her way back again and rediscovers herself and her true beauty through the metaphor of fly fishing.
It is set in the beautiful moutains of North Carolina which is one of the prettiest places on earth to me and Mrs. Monroe describes it with honesty and love.
It combines a love of all things good about the south the hospitality, the abil
May 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book, fiction
Interesting, sweet, timeless read. Two different time periods are interspersed which does stimulate interest in the story. I particularly found the book worthwhile because one of the main characters stays in a river cabin that is filled with antiques, books, and a bit of a mystery. There is also a little romance thrown in but not too much so it gets all syrupy gushie.

The subject of fly fishing is the common theme. I have never even tried this sport nor do I want to; however, the subject was int
Mar 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I must admit as much as I love this author and how she writes, I wasn't looking forward to the sad topic such as breast cancer. Amazingly, I was enraptured with this book. Ms. Monroe has a wonderful ability to weave wonderful stories with the greatest details that literally draw you into the story so you don't want to put it down. Yes, breast cancer was a major item, but it takes a back seat to how Mia grows from it's low depth into a self assured woman. I absolutely love the fascinating art of ...more
Mar 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a heartwarming novel about a woman named Mia who is recovering from breast cancer and her husband’s infidelity. She spends time in a cabin in the mountains of North Carolina to recuperate and rebuild her sense of self.
All of the characters are well-developed and endearing. The author has a wonderful writing style. There’s also a story within a story about a trail-blazing female fly-fisher in the 1920s. There is mystery and romance as well. I highly recommend it.
Sep 11, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: everyone
This is not just the story of a breast cancer survivors battle with overcoming the fear of cancer. It is a lesson in living life to the fullest. The novel compares the river and fly-fishing the river, to the ups and downs in life. She learns to be thankful for the miracles!
Mindy Tysinger
Jul 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'm such a big Mary Alice Monroe fan and this book was really a keeper! Set away from her beloved Charleston area, this book is set up in the mountains of North Carolina. After Mia Landon discovers her husband cheating on her, she flees to a small cabin near Asheville owned by a woman running a fly fishing program for women recovering from breast cancer. As she begins to try and heal her spirit and body she stumbles upon a diary of Kate Watkins, a legendary fly fisher who owned the cabin previou ...more
Jan 29, 2020 rated it liked it
I enjoyed learning about fly fishing something I knew nothing about. A nice story.
Feb 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who likes contemporary fiction
Recommended to Mary by: Bookmooch
Recovering from breast cancer and still reeling from the revelation of her husband's infidelity, Mia Landan flees her Charleston home for the healing serenity of the mountains near Asheville, North Carolina. She seeks refuge in a neglected cabin belonging to her fly-fishing instructor, Belle Carson.

Belle has recently inherited the cabin, which once belonged to a grandmother she never knew - a legendary fly fisher and journalist from the 1920s. Kate Watkins may have once been spoken of with great
Mar 30, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is soothing novel about healing and moving past survival to abundant living. It makes me want to head to the nearest river and learn to fly fish. The main character is a woman who is forced to find herself again after a bout with breast cancer. the story springboards from an organization called "casting for recovery" which teaches breast cancer patients and survivors how to fly fish as a therapeutic tool.

It is a sweet story, a satisfying read. Here is one excerpt spoke to me:

"Standing in
Jun 29, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really loved this book. Is sparked that reading fire in me again. It has been some time since I have felt that pull to spend hours curled up with a story. I'm greatful that it is back.
Mia is a survivor. A breast-cancer survivor and a woman surviving the betrayals of a cheating husband. To cope with the sudden changes in her life, Mia runs for refuge to a cabin hidden in the North Carolina mountains. Armed with nothing but determination and a fly-fishing rod, Mia will learn what hope really me
Jul 29, 2009 rated it really liked it
Key quotes:

"I write these words down because I do not want them to come back into my heart. By writing these words down I must face the feelings. It is strange how I feel a shiver of the feeling when I say the word aloud. I shall read the words over and over until that feeling is gone. These are the feelings of the lost. I am not lost." p. 83

"Rivers and streams can have dangerously swift currents. Remain alert and cautious when stepping foot into any moving water. Once in the water, stand with y
Sep 18, 2009 rated it really liked it
Here's an easy read with a clear meaning. There's romance, mystery, betrayal, renewal. The lure of fly fishing has eluded me even though my husband is an avid fly fisherman. This book explores the human connection to the river and nature.

It's easy to admire Kate Watkins, a fictional fishing guide, who gained fame in the 1920's when fly fishing was a male dominated sport. I got drawn into the mystery surrounding her lover's disappearance - was the gossip that Kate had murdered him accurate? That
Aug 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
When my book club picked this, I was NOT excited at first. After reading it however, I loved it! This isn't just about a woman who survived breast cancer and finds hope in fly-fishing. It's a real like at what it's like to get hope and purpose back. Perhaps even finding yourself when it was buried in the life you lead. Let's face it, many of us don't reflect on who we are very often...and perhaps we should.
I also loved the "mystery" aspect of this book. Being a history buff myself, it was fun t
Jun 01, 2009 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 24, 2008 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed the first 100 pages of this book but seemed to drag on... and there are many references to fly fishing...and you know fly fishing just didn't peek an interest in me! :) It is a mixture of a present day story intertwined with a past story that I just struggled keeping interest in.
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Mary Alice Monroe is the New York Times bestselling author of 23 novels, including On Ocean Boulevard, which is the sixth installment of the Beach House series.

More than 7.5 million copies of her books have been published worldwide, and she’s earned numerous accolades and awards, including: Induction into the South Carolina Academy of Authors’ Hall of Fame; the Southwest Florida Author of Distinct

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“A woman does not need to live among many people to be content. She needs but one true companion, one soul mate with whom to share this long journey we call life.” 3 likes
“she’d neglected to make choices for her inner self as well. She’d given away too much.” 0 likes
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