RIVER OF SKY by Karen Harper


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 From bestselling author Harper (The Wings of Morning, 1993, etc.) comes this period romance set on the American frontier in the early 19th century. After her husband dies of a heart attack, Kate Craig is left with only her little boy to console her. Grief is joined by a sense of betrayal and rage when she learns that her husband, a trader, had another wife, a young Indian woman who lived ``upriver'' with the Mandan tribe. Moreover, since he had neglected to tell her that he was up to his eyeballs in debt, Kate now finds herself stripped of her fine St. Louis house and all its possessions. Forced to support herself and her child, she decides to take Red Dawn, the one shabby little boat she does own, up the river to trade with the hospitable Mandan tribe. One of her passengers is Blue Wing, her husband's other wife, whom Kate has befriended and is now taking back to her people. The other is Rand MacLeod, a half-Indian appointed to act as subagent for the Mandan tribe. Kate thinks Rand is moody and volatile, but the attraction between them grows, even though it seems they are from two different worlds. But when Kate meets the Mandans and lives with them, their cause--and Rand's- -becomes dear to her heart, and she undergoes considerable risk and expense to obtain the precious smallpox serum that will save the tribe from being decimated by the deadly disease. Other dangers and obstacles abound, including an attack by bloodthirsty Sioux and a corrupt trader intent on cheating the tribes. But Kate's grit and pluck prevail; she is able to leave her past behind and find happiness with her son, Rand, now her husband, and their baby daughter. Good writing, solid research, and a strong plot make this a hearty, stick-to-your-ribs romance that is guaranteed to satisfy. (First serial to Good Housekeeping)

Pub Date: Aug. 15th, 1994
ISBN: 0-525-93822-2
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: Dutton
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15th, 1994


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