The River Queen is the story of Julienne Ashby and Dallas Bronte in the pre-civil war era. When her father suddenly dies, Julienne and her family must move out of their upscale mansion and onto a broken down steamer boat.
The fact that this book had a lot of faith based conversations and that Jesus and cross are stated plainly, I love because these are the things that set a christian books apart.
Unfortunately this book only gets 3 stars because of the annoying main character of Julienne, a spoiled and self centered socialite whines and pouts when she doesn't get her way or is confronted with her short comings and she doesn't begin to show the least amount of growth or maturity until the very end of the book. I honestly felt sorry for Dallas who eventually marries her.
Darcy, her brother, I liked better because although he starts out as a lazy drunk, he does grow up and become a hard working adult.
Dallas was the best written because although he wasn't a "christian" throughout most of the book, he did his best to do the right thing for people. I felt he had the most "character." He would take one step foreword and two steps back which I liked because he wasn't perfect, but it did show commitment.
"I want to look pretty, I want to have fun, I want to dance. I might even meet some exciting new people!"
Thus are the words of the fiery Julienne Ashby whose flaming red-gold locks match her haywire temper and headstrong rebellious air. Spoiled by the life of frills and social calls and glamorous living that sprouts from her family's aristocratic status in the community, Julienne hasn't a care in the world other than the angst of wondering what over-priced outfit she will wear for her next party.
Along with her tomboy sister who'd rather collect worms than learn geography and her partying brother who spends his days recovering from last night's hangover, this twenty-three-year-old fashion guru of 1855 refuses to cut back on her extravagant lifestyle, despite their father's persistent warnings that the family's financial position is headed downstream fast.
When tragedy strikes and the Ashbys are forced to sell nearly all their possessions, Julienne is thrust into a position of family leadership, discovering untapped potential as businesswoman and using her stubborn will to keep her family off the street.
Enter the River Queen. Now the owner of the dilapidated little steamboat, Julienne decides that the Queen is their only chance to make a living and regain their dignity.
The River Queen seems to mirror its primary owner's soul - strong and steadfast with a potential for great beauty. If only the multiple years' worth of muck and grime can be scrubbed away. Dallas Bronte, the steamer's new captain and pilot sees the hidden inner beauty of both. But will Julienne's pride cause her to turn to a less honorable man for help with the Queen? A man who, unlike Dallas Bronte, is not motivated by a love for the Queen and its feisty owner _ but simply by a desire to own them.
And will Julienne's regard for her steamboat and its pilot move from one of frigid necessity to, perhaps, even love?
Through it all, Julienne and Dallas must learn to trust in a God whose power and love they've never fully acknowledged, and realize that no matter how bleak a situation, you're never too filthy for Him to clean up.
Note: In my personal opinion, the book didn't possess the type of edge-of-your-seat, page-turning pull that I'm used to. However, it did bring back some reminiscent memories of the Mandie series, a childhood favorite of mine, as the historical setting and writing style is similar to that of Lois Gladys Leppard (minus the mystery and frequent kidnappings). But for those who enjoy a good, historical romance with a slight Pride and Prejudice feel and solid Biblical values, this book is a perfect read and should be accompanied by a cozy fireplace and hot cup of chamomile tea.
This book seemed interesting to me, so I picked it up and began reading it. The entire first chapter describes the leading lady's bedroom! I mean it tells you what kind of bedding she has and everything! Overall, I couldn't stand the lead character's personality- she didn't have one! This book was so boring, I didn't even finish it.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. You can just imagine the setting because of the vivid descriptions. This is one of those books where you are transported back to that time in history. I read this book in a short amount of time because you don't won't to put it down. I loved all the characters, even the "bad guys."