Customer Reviews for

The River

Average Rating 4
( 58 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(28)

4 Star

(14)

3 Star

(10)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(2)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

An incredible story that inspired me deeply. I would encourage

An incredible story that inspired me deeply. I would encourage all to read...

posted by Anonymous on November 12, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

7 out of 18 people found this review helpful.

N

Well here is another book ruined by these excessive plot revealing posters. Why cant they understand that ppl want to read a book and be surprised by what happens, not have it told to them like we are blithering idiots too stupid to read? Another sale lost bn.

posted by 8888649 on November 20, 2012

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  • Posted February 8, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This book wasn't really to my taste. It wasn't a bad book. The w

    This book wasn't really to my taste. It wasn't a bad book. The writing style was OK. I just couldn't get into the story.

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  • Posted December 14, 2012

    Worth the Read...

    wish we could do halves...I'd give this one 3.5 stars. I had a hard time getting started with it. The chapters dealing with Gabriel's life growing up seemed choppy and sometimes didn't mean a lot, but once I got to the second half of the book I was much more interested. Near the end I couldn't put it down and I loved the ending! There are some powerful lessons about loss and what it can do to our psyche, about having the courage to overcome your fears and about forgiveness. It's a quick read and well worth it.

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  • Posted December 14, 2012

    Good read - it was longer.

    Enjoyed the implications of spirituality the author expressed without pressing it onto the reader. Story was well developed, main character was complex and real. I wanted to hear more and more, wish it wasn't so short.

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  • Posted December 13, 2012

    The River, by Michael Neale, is not only the story of a young ma

    The River, by Michael Neale, is not only the story of a young man dealing with the ghosts of his past, it's also a story about him finding his life's calling and embracing his destiny.

    As a boy living in the mountains of Colorado, Gabriel Clarke watched his father sacrifice himself to The River to save another man's life. Heroic though the action may have been, from his 5-year-old perspective, Gabriel's father abandoned him. After that, Gabriel moved to Kansas to live with his mother.

    The following years spent on the farm were simple and horrible. Gabriel, not able to escape the pain and the loss, struggled to make it through each day. By the time he turned twelve, he still had an incredible fear of water, and it was only through the gift of a fishing rod that he was able to re-encounter The River in a healing way.

    As a young adult, he gets pulled away from Kansas by some friends to go camping in Colorado. There he has a supernatural experience with The River which replaces much of his fear with awe. He goes white-water rafting and feels himself come alive. That camping trip was too short so he later returns to Colorado to spend the summer working at the white-water rafting camp. There he learns much about his past and has an encounter that, depending on how he handles it, will change the course of his life forever.

    While I found this book to be entertaining, there were many instances which pointed to the author's inexperience as a writer. For instance, the story is told to us by someone who meets Gabriel Clarke in an airport. Gabriel tells the narrator his story, who then shares Gabriel's story to us "as he told it to me." I would expect it to then be written from Gabriel's perspective (as it would have been originally told to the narrator). Instead, it was written in third person narration. Either Gabriel is one strange duck who narrates his own life, or the author made a big oopsie.

    In addition, the dialogue and story line were very simply written and stated many of the characteristics of the various characters instead of showing them. For instance, we are told that Gabriel has 'hard days' and 'easy days' as a child, but we never really know what that means. We are told that on a 'hard day' he retreats to a secret place in his mind, but we are never allowed to join him there. (Another indicator that the story is not really being told "as he told it to me")

    All in all, I'd give the book 3/5 stars, which reflects more of my appreciation of the way Colorado, mountains, and rivers are portrayed than it does for the story itself. I will say this though - I was on the brink of tears the last couple chapters of the book. It's an emotional tale that I did connect to...especially toward the end.

    I received a copy of this book from the publishing company and was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed here are my own.

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  • Posted November 29, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    ┬┐The River┬┐ began with a sweet father-son scene, then pulled me

    “The River” began with a sweet father-son scene, then pulled me into with the story of Gabriel and the tragic loss of his father. The thread of the story flowed like a river, moving the characters along, churning with rapids, then streaming from shallow, light moods to deep emotions. The frequent point-of-view shifts pulled me out of the story from time to time, but I kept going back to see how little Gabriel was managing. Author Michael Neale made me care about the characters and their struggles. I guessed the plot twist before the end, but it didn’t dampen my interest in the story.
    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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    Posted November 1, 2012

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