The River Queen: A Memoir

Mary Morris

Published by Picador, 2008
ISBN 10: 0312427891 / ISBN 13: 9780312427894
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In the fall of 2005 acclaimed writer Mary Morris set off down the Mississippi River in a battered old houseboat called The River Queen, with two river rats named Tom and Jerry and an ailing, irascible rat terrier named Samantha Jean. Her father had just died. Her daughter had gone off to college. Lost and uncertain, Morris returned to the river of her youth, to the waterside towns where her father had once lived. In this poignant and often humorous memoir, Morris reclaims the world of her childhood as she gets a bearing on her future. She describes traveling down stream through the Midwest, living like a pirate as she survives a tornado and infestation of mayflies, bivouacs on beaches, and ties up to paddleboats in the dark of night. As she learns to pilot the River Queen through these fabled waters, Morris delivers a memoir that "deserves to be both a best-seller and a classic" (The Courier-Journal).

From the Back Cover: "The emotion in this book is wonderfully sly--it creeps up on you. Like the Mississippi itself, it winds in a seeming meander, just following the buoys, day following day, but in fact there is tremendous build in the inquiry of the heart, powerful attachment to an America not only lost but perhaps always imaginary. It's a wonderful adventure, going with you on this trip downriver, to the depths of your own history and heart."--Patricia Hampl, author of Blue Arabesque

"In The River Queen, Mary Morris once again demonstrates her wit, eloquence, generosity, curiosity and compassion as she takes us on a journey into the past and the present, into a very particular American landscape and her own complicated history. She is the ideal traveling companion."--Margot Livesey, author of Eva Moves the Furniture

"On the surface, Mary Morris's midlife journey of memory and mourning may meander down the Mississippi River, but underneath the water courses a poignant story of acceptance and resolution. Not one to sugar-coat her observations, her travelogue compellingly weaves her inner and outer journeys, resulting in a quietly moving memoir filled with humor, compassion, and honesty."--Liz Perle, author of Money: A Memoir

"If you don't know Mary Morris's name, you should: she writes from the heart with grace and wit and poetry, finding words for the loves and the losses we all have and can't ever seem to describe. Morris's latest memoir is a valentine to the bonds and the breaks between fathers and daughters, the steady flow of family, the tributaries that divert us from the journeys we must take to find our way home. The River Queen is my new favorite book; I wish I'd been the one to write something so flawless, so honest, and so resonant."--Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling author of My Sister's Keeper and Nineteen Minutes

"Mary Morris has woven together the strands of her own life--mother, daughter, wife, writer, traveler, woman of the world--and created a rich and colorful tapestry in The River Queen. She is both tour guide and sorceress, conjuring one indelible scene after the next, making this book impossible to put down. I laughed out loud and I cried in public while reading this remarkable, moving memoir."--Dani Shapiro, author of Family History and Black & White

"I have read The River Queen with great pleasure, because it is such an American adventure, which Mary Morris handles with verve--the Mississippi, the unexpected storms and odd encounters, but most of all how the adventure and the lark become `a passage into memory, childhood, and the past.'"--Paul Theroux

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The River Queen: A Memoir
Publisher: Picador
Publication Date: 2008
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: New
Edition: 1st.

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Morris, Mary
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