Píaras Cíonnaoíth's Reviews > American River: Tributaries: Book One of the American River Trilogy

American River by Mallory M. O'Connor
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it was amazing

A well-crafted historical novel.

Whatever flaws we might identify or frustrations we might feel are trivial in comparison to a reader’s pure joy in losing himself/herself in a narrative. When all the elements come together: an intriguing plot, thoughtful, profound themes, complex, troubling, characters, and language that will unsettle for its clarity, directness and confidence; we gratefully set all analysis aside and give ourselves up to the sheer magic of a great book. And for me, American River: Tributaries, is such a book.

Author Mallory M. O'Connor weaves a compelling and gripping historical drama, with intriguing twists and turns that will easily captivate the reader’s attention from the beginning. The author paints a dynamic and spellbinding tale in a very vivid and convincing way. In addition, the characters are drawn with great credibility and conviction. It was a slow-paced novel at times, but it still kept me engaged from the first page to the last.

The story had every element a good story should have. An exciting plot, attention to detail, but best of all fleshed out, well-written and well-rounded character development. There’s an abundance of well-illustrated scenes that make you feel like you are right there in the story, and that’s something I really look for in a good book.

The book description gives a preview of this first instalment; ‘In the mid-1800s, three immigrant families—Irish, Japanese, and Mexican—settle along the American River in Northern California. A century later, only one family remains.

Owen McPhalan’s Mockingbird Valley Ranch is still a thriving family business in 1959. But when his wife, Marian, leaves Mockingbird to follow her dream of becoming a successful artist, she ignites a firestorm that impacts the descendants of all three families. As artists, musicians, writers, and politicians inherit their immigrant parents’ hopes, they are torn apart by ambition, prejudice, and deception while struggling through the turbulent 1960s. From the concert halls of Europe to Kyoto’s ancient avenues, and Manhattan’s artist’s lofts to San Francisco’s North Beach, they each learn the price they must pay in order to realize their dreams. But just as the river is drawn to the sea, they eventually find themselves pulled back to the place that forged the original link between their destinies—a place called Mockingbird.

American River: Tributaries follows three California families as the descendants of Irish, Japanese, and Mexican immigrants embark on unique journeys to pursue their dreams amid an unsettled 1960s world.’

Now, if that’s not enough to get your whet your appetite, I don’t know what will. But if you want to find out what happens, you’ll just have to turn the pages for yourself! However, I will say it was well worth the read. It’s my first time reading this author and I must say I was very impressed.

Captivating and commendable, this work had me immersed from the beginning. The story flowed from scene to scene with ease, and the author shows exceptional ability when it comes to storytelling. There are plenty of attention-grabbing moments in this page turner that will take the reader on a truly fascinating and intriguing journey of discovery!

It’s one of those books that comes along occasionally that makes you want to read it non-stop until you get to the end. I’m giving nothing further away here. And this, I hope, will only add to the mystery and enjoyment for the reader.

If this book is anything to go by, I’ll certainly be looking forward to reading more from Mallory M. O'Connor in the future. I would recommend this book and could easily see this being adapted as a television series or even receiving a Hollywood treatment. A well-deserved five stars from me.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
February 20, 2018 – Shelved
February 20, 2018 – Finished Reading

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