Book Review: Peace Like a River

Peace Like a River by Leif Engle is one of the best reads I encountered so far in 2016.  It was recommended by a friend who had borrowed it from the library, and she wanted me to read it so badly, she sent an Amazon copy to my front door (good friend!).  One of the blurbs on the book said, it “serves as a reminder of why we read fiction to begin with.”

The Land family,consists of  father-Jeremiah, Davy-older brother, Ruben-narrator and wonderful but asthmatic middle child, and Swede- the blonde haired blue eyed baby of the family, whom one reviewer compares to Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird.  The story is set in Minnesota and travels to the Dakota badlands as the story progresses.  The characters are unforgettable and the plot is suspenseful to the point where you discover you are holding your breath as you read.

There is a peace, as mentioned in the title, constantly searched for and finally attained by both the characters and the reader. One reviewer called the novel, “the perfect book for an anxious time,” referring to both the decade of the novel and today’s times which often require the total immersion in a good book to “make it through.”

I wholeheartedly recommend this book as a good investment of your reading time.


Author: Rae Longest

This year marks my fiftieth year in AAUW (American Association of University Women). The Alvin chapter was begun in 1947, and as a new, green teacher to Alvin Independent School District, I joined in 1968. In the 80's we began a book group to share our love of reading, books,and fellowship with other women and girls who loved the same. We resurrected the group on-line in September of 2015. Eventually Powerful Women Readers folded as an on-line book club, but I kept the title and turned it into a blog. (See "Introduction,"first blog). This is my first experience at blogging or publishing anything and is becomes more fun with each blog posted. I am currently teaching as an adjunct at The University of Houston Clear Lake. This makes my 28th year there after three years at Alvin Community College and an almost-twenty year career as a classroom teacher with Alvin Independent School District. Reading and writing are "in my blood" just like teaching is. I hope you enjoy the blog.

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