⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆ “River Braids by Marcy Luikart is an intricately woven tale which spans a one-hundred-year time frame and several generations. Initially, the setting is 2004 when Sonny has returned to his home town to tend to his dying father. When meeting his friends at the local bar, he discovers that a picture of his grandfather, a man he always admired, has been altered. This then takes the reader back one hundred years to the time when Grandfather Barton was to row in the Olympics, only to be denied because of his Native American heritage. We are introduced to Grandfather Joe and his wife Annie via Annie’s diary. We then learn of the unrest of Joe’s son Nathan who also had yearnings for the Native American culture. Throughout the journey into the past, young Sonny begins to appreciate his heritage, as well as his upbringing along the unpredictable Mississippi River culture.

Luikart had a formidable challenge in writing across generations and cultures and families but she rose admirably to the task. At times, her words appear as prose to the reader who follows the characters on the Mississippi waters, through to a Native American Fair and back in time to a lost culture. The solutions to the mysteries are seemingly only an arm’s length away and the reader dare not put down the book for fear of losing out on the journey. This is a book of unforgettable characters who will make you want to learn about your own history as you cheer on Sonny to make the best of his own journey through time.” – Karen Pirnot for Readers’ Favorite

⋆⋆⋆⋆ “A wonderful story of interlocking generations….Nathan, Joe and Sonny…life at the turn of the 20th century in respect to how American Indians were treated…the river is also a main character that bridges Grandpa Joe with Sonny…this book would make a great addition to any school reading list…the author has a wonderful way of bringing each page to life….” – Mina Carrieri

⋆⋆⋆⋆ ”CAPTIVATING! ….. don’t say that too often but this book more than deserves it. The short chapters are concise and stream together better than one could imagine. You get drawn in from page one and follow the family lineage and the saga of their connection, to and the draw of the Mississippi river. Love, history, racial bias, and intriguing characters!!” – Linda Eells

⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆ “This book has been such a pleasure to read, bringing me back to a time when life was simple yet untamed by technology. The author captures the audience with her witty characters as well as historical perspective; while keeping the reader in suspense of what will happen next. It is an easy read with each chapter being a character’s perspective to the whole story. Being raised near open water, I appreciate this recollection of memories in the simmering summers near the waters edge. This is a must read for all ages. “ – Andrea

⋆⋆⋆⋆River Braids is captivating and an easy read. It is a beautiful story about a grandfather who claimed to be on the 1904 Olympic rowing team. It switches back and forth from 1904 to 2004. The setting is along the Mississippi River in Missouri. This story has it all: love, history, hope, and suspense.” – Sue Smith

⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆ “A story of generations for generations. It was such a beautiful story, told so well, that I absolutely loved it.  I love to read and usually finish 3-5 books a week. River Braids was a stand out for its ability to tell generational love stories that I can let my 10 year grand daughter read and enjoy without shame. What a blessing in today’s world. This book is a gift to all in a world of violence and blatant sex. We get history of the river, of rowing, discrimination, all woven into a wonderful story that kept me interested from page one to the ending. A true gem. Hope the author keep writing!” – Jan

⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆ “The author seamlessly slides between events that occurred and characters that lived near the Mississippi river one hundred years apart. The pace is easy and steady and I found myself rooting for the characters in both time frames. The effects of the past, especially of a Barton family and town secret, on the present day main character Sonny Barton’s search for his place in his world are artfully revealed over the course of the story. Besides the characters and the story I enjoyed learning about the 1904 Olympics and rowing on the Mississippi.” – Jean Limongello

⋆⋆⋆⋆ “River Braids is wonderfully descriptive. The reader is transported to a time and place so vividly, leaving one with the feeling of being there on the banks of the Mississippi drawn in by the power of the flow. The transitions between the events during the 1904 Olympic year story and the characters living in the same place 100 years later is handled with skill. Difficult issues dealing with belonging, whether to a community, team or location are explored, revealing the long term impact of actions and attitudes that are still creating ripples after ten decades. This was a fascinating journey to a time and era that makes me curious to find out more about both the characters and the place. I would certainly want to read a continuation if one ever came out.” – Caro A

⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆“This novel is a breath of fresh air. As an avid reader of magazines and current fiction River Braids is truly an inspiration. The characters become your friends and the language is fluid and visual. You are taken on a journey without feeling dragged along through repetitive imagery and condescension as I so often find. Perfect for an afternoon read in the park, a plane journey or anytime you want a good story. The characters are relate able to everyone, we all know a Sonny, Grace, a Charlie and hopefully a Joe.” – Kathryn Woolf

⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆ “I read Ms. Luikart’s wonderful book, River Braids expecting something interesting, but found something magical in her writing. Marcy is a master of weaving many timelines and characters into a very simple but powerfully emotional portrait of a family that crosses racial lines. I found this work almost Hemingwayish, concise and direct. I am so grateful for the experience of this writing style as it moves from one heartfelt incident to another. I look forward to reading more from Ms. Luikart.” – Tina

⋆⋆⋆⋆⋆“I am an avid reader and picky about what I read because I have so little time to spend on my favorite hobby. River Braids was more than worth my time and I would eagerly read a second novel following the story of Sonny and Grace if Marcy Luikart were to write one, and I hope she does! I became completely wrapped up in the lives of her characters, craving to know more about them and the paths they chose. I was concerned at first that the style of telling several parallel stories at once might be fragmented and disruptive to the flow of the story, however, it wasn’t. Ms. Luikart did a fabulous job of connecting the recollections and story telling into a flowing story. I enjoyed it very much and will recommend it to others.” – Melanie