Once Upon a River



by Diane Settenfield, is set along the bank of the Thames river in
England in the early 1800s. A young girl has been found apparently drowned. But when she
suddenly awakens, she is considered not only a miracle but a mystery. Who is she? Her trauma
having rendered her dumb, there is speculation among three families that she belongs to them.
One is a couple whose daughter disappeared four years ago, one is a man whose son fathered a
daughter who he never met, and the third is a young woman who lost her sister under odd
circumstances several years in the past. Settenfield (author of the much loved THIRTEENTH
TALE), is really good at adding a gothic touch to her books. Misty river banks, tales of
drowned river men, even the descriptions of the flowing, ever-changing river add to this tale.