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“Shelley Read has written a splendid American Gothic tale of a young woman broken by circumstances who must find a way to forgive before she can love. Victoria Nash is a character for the ages as she navigates loss and despair on the road to redemption. The vast plains and desert canyons of her Colorado home are filled with ghosts until a mysterious drifter arrives and changes the course of her life forever. Go as a River is a stunning debut set in the soul of the American dream.” 

—Adriana Trigiani, author of The Good Left Undone 


“Completely spellbinding, vivid, and luminous.” 

—Jane Green, author of Sister Stardust 


“Shelley Read's lyrical voice is a force of nature, and when she lends it to a woman leading a hardscrabble life in rural Colorado, the result is tragic, uplifting – and completely unforgettable.” 

—Bonnie Garmus, author of Lessons in Chemistry 


“Shelley Read’s devastatingly beautiful debut, Go as a River, delivers so very much: the tenderness and curiosity of young love, the eternal pangs of loss, the brutality of racism, the sustaining power of nature even in the face of man’s destruction, and the precarious miracle of a mother’s love. Suffused with wisdom and compassion, this shattering testimony to life is one to be savored, treasured, shared.”  

—Meg Waite Clayton, internationally bestselling author of The Postmistress of Paris 


“In Go as a River, Shelley Read delivers a heartbreaking and uplifting tale of a girl becoming a woman in a man’s world. Young Victoria Nash is as tough and resilient as the Colorado mountains where she takes refuge, and as tender as the peaches that are her family legacy. Book clubs will love this redemptive story.”  

—Tiffany Quay Tyson, author of The Past Is Never 



“This soaring, compassionate tale of female resilience is set against a breath-taking picture of our natural world – its trees and mountains and light.”  

—The Independent (UK).     


“An auspicious debut."  

Kirkus Reviews (starred review) 



–Publishers Weekly