Summary and book reviews of What the River Washed Away by Muriel Mharie Macleod

What the River Washed Away

by Muriel Mharie Macleod

What the River Washed Away
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Aug 2013, 288 pages
    Paperback:
    Jul 2013, 288 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Rory L. Aronsky

Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

A missing child, a buried tin of coins, and a terrible secret - these lie at the heart of Muriel Macleod's powerful first novel set deep in the back country of early-20th-century Louisiana.

A missing child, a buried tin of coins, and a terrible secret - these lie at the heart of Muriel Macleod's powerful first novel set deep in the back country of early-20th-century Louisiana, where lawlessness still reigns and the voodoo curses and charms of the old ways hold sway. Here eight-year-old Arletta lives with her family in an isolated shack in the woods. Sometimes she sees the white men walking down the track toward her home and knows to hide. But sometimes she sees them too late, until one day she finds the strength to fight back with ferocity. The men don't return. But when years later she hears that another girl has been attacked, and past meets present, Arletta is compelled to act, plotting a revenge that will leave its mark on history.

One

He's a bad man.

I scrub myself clean after he's gone. The water is shivering cold. He says my feet feel soft like a baby's, but blood flows from where I scraped them raw on the slab beneath the pipe.

'Arletta!'

That's Mambo. She can scream. I'm gonna get thwacked for sure. As if I ain't sore enough.

'Arletta, feed them chickens, and feed them good. Arletta, what the hell ya doing? Don't go washing ya hair in the evening time girl, that's how ya get chilled all the time and what do I get? A poorly child!'

Thwack.

'How many times I tell ya girl?'

'All times, Mambo.'

Thwack.

'Well, one of them times it gonna be real fine if you just do as ya told. Go on now. Feed them chickens and then get y'self right on o! to bed. Ya hearing me, Arletta?'

'Okay, Mambo.'

'And come on in here, so I can dry that hair. Come on now.' Mambo's fresh home ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

The ultimate message that Macleod imparts is that no matter how hard your life gets, no matter who might stand in your way, no matter what you have to face day after day, there’s still a chance to rise above it all and be who you want to be. Arletta rises. It’s a powerful message, and could be a tonic for those who need it.   (Reviewed by Rory L. Aronsky).

Full Review Members Only (766 words).

Media Reviews

New Internationalist

An inspring story which will haunt you long after you have read the final pages

Booklist

British film producer Macleod offers an engaging story of a young girl’s struggle for self-determination.

Kirkus Reviews

Starred Review. Macleod brilliantly hooks the reader from beginning to end with a narrative that opens a floodgate of emotions and overflows with unforgettable characters. Be prepared to shed a tear or two.

Author Blurb Marlon James, author of The Book of Night Women
A spellbinding novel

Author Blurb Maureen Lindley, author of The Private Papers of Eastern Jewel
Stunning - a heart-wrenching tale that speaks to you long after the last page is turned

Reader Reviews

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book

Marksville, Louisiana

Wagon Wheel MonumentIn Venice, Italy, where it is believed he was from, he was Marco Litche, a trader. In America, he became Marc Eliche. In 1794, a broken wagon wheel stranded him 62 miles north of Lafayette. But the environment was nice, and so were the Avoyels, a small Native American tribe that lived there; also he was a trader, so there was business to be done. He established a trading post, married Julie Carmouche of Point Coupee Parish in 1796, and secured Spanish land grants. (Spain owned Louisiana from 1762-1802 but was mostly a benign and absent "landlord". Although it only owned Louisiana for a short time many defining characteristics of Louisiana's architecture, such as buildings in the French Quarter of New Orleans, are Spanish constructions.) ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

Readalikes Full readalike results are for members only

If you liked What the River Washed Away, try these:

  • I Shall Be Near To You jacket

    I Shall Be Near To You

    by Erin Lindsay McCabe

    Published 2014

    More about this book

    Read Reviews

    I Shall Be Near To You is the intimate story of the drama of marriage, one woman's amazing exploits, and the tender love story that can unfold when two partners face life's challenges side by side.

  • Out of The Easy jacket

    Out of The Easy

    by Ruta Sepetys

    Published 2014

    More about this book

    Read Reviews

    With characters as captivating as those in her internationally bestselling novel Between Shades of Gray, Ruta Sepetys skillfully creates a rich story of secrets, lies, and the haunting reminder that decisions can shape our destiny.

Non-members are limited to two results. Become a member


Search Readalikes again
How we choose readalikes
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

One Month Free Membership

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Hot Milk
    Hot Milk
    by Deborah Levy
    When people reach their early 20s, they often choose to go abroad – they want to get away from...
  • Book Jacket: Ninety-Nine Stories of God
    Ninety-Nine Stories of God
    by Joy Williams
    I have to preface this review by saying that I am not a fan of religious fiction - not even books ...
  • Book Jacket: The Book That Matters Most
    The Book That Matters Most
    by Ann Hood
    BookBrowse First Impression reviewers appreciated the innovative structure of The Book That Matters ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Ashes of Fiery Weather
    by Kathleen Donohoe

    "Admirers of Pete Hamill and Kate Atkinson will appreciate this gripping novel." - Library Journal

    Read Member Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Book That Matters Most
    by Ann Hood

    An enthralling novel about love, loss, secrets and friendship.

    Read Member Reviews

Book Discussions
Book Jacket
Circling the Sun
by Paula McLain

An intoxicatingly vivid portrait of colonial Kenya and its privileged inhabitants.

About the book
Join the discussion!
Win this book!
Win Lady Cop Makes Trouble

The Kopp Sisters Return!

One of the nation's first female deputy sheriffs returns in another gripping adventure based on fact.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

Manners M (T) M

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.

 
X

Free Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with what's happening in the world of books:
Reviews, previews, interviews and more!



Spam Free: Your email is never shared with anyone; opt out any time.