Crowning Glory River's Journey

A Novel

Fiction - Cultural
319 Pages
Reviewed on 05/09/2019
Buy on Amazon

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Review Exchange Program, which is open to all authors and is completely free. Simply put, you agree to provide an honest review an author's book in exchange for the author doing the same for you. What sites your reviews are posted on (B&N, Amazon, etc.) and whether you send digital (eBook, PDF, Word, etc.) or hard copies of your books to each other for review is up to you. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email, and be sure to describe your book or include a link to your Readers' Favorite review page or Amazon page.

This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Donation Program, which was created to help nonprofit and charitable organizations (schools, libraries, convalescent homes, soldier donation programs, etc.) by providing them with free books and to help authors garner more exposure for their work. This author is willing to donate free copies of their book in exchange for reviews (if circumstances allow) and the knowledge that their book is being read and enjoyed. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email. Be sure to tell the author who you are, what organization you are with, how many books you need, how they will be used, and the number of reviews, if any, you would be able to provide.

Author Biography

Taylor Thompson grew up in the Houston suburbs, and was transferred to Chicago with a job assignment where she lived for sixteen years. Her experiences growing up in the 1950's south, as well as those as the only black person amongst her peers served as the catalyst for her first novel.

    Book Review

Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite

Crowning Glory: River’s Journey is a work of fiction on personal and cultural themes, penned by author Taylor Thompson. Beginning historically during the 1950s racial tensions of Hopewell, Texas, we meet our central character River as a young child and journey with her through much of her life. Ultimately a tale of survival through pain, abuse, and trials by fire, River learns what it means to be a black woman by the influences of those around her, exploring self-hatred, lust, and racism, but also passion, love, and success as time goes by. What results is a tale of uprising that encapsulates the shifting ideologies of the modern world, connecting past experience to present day political progress.

At its heart, River’s is a deeply personal story which is sure to touch the hearts of readers who enjoy compelling drama and complex, emotive tales, but the talent of author Taylor Thompson spreads far beyond the story into real-world issues and important messages for the modern day. The prose and dialogue bring us close to our central character, and the explicit content is well chosen to be impactful without gratuitousness, conveying important moments of pleasure and pain that define River’s next stage of life. Raw and unfiltered, we see a real woman and a real story that reflects the lives of so many in its fictional world, making it all the more heartfelt, heart-breaking and heart-warming at different times. Overall, Crowning Glory: River’s Journey is an accomplished piece of fiction with much to experience, enjoy and remember.

Ruffina Oserio

Crowning Glory River's Journey: A Novel by Taylor Thompson follows the life of River Thomas who experiences child abuse from the early age of eight when her mother straightens her hair with a comb heated on the kitchen stove. She cries out, “Mama, it hurts,” but the mother pays no attention to what the little girl feels. Follow a black woman emerging and sculpting her personality in a society riddled by racism, navigating complex household issues, and tied to a man far older than her. River suffers abuse, bigotry, hatred and more. But can she handle Adam who awakens her sexually and the policeman determined to steal her business, one she has developed through hard work?

Taylor Thompson shows readers what it felt like to grow up as a black woman in the racially divided social environment of 1950s Hopewell, Texas. The narrative starts with a very curious incident, a mother causing pain to her eight-year-old daughter just to make her hair straight. From an early age, she is already aware that she is different, and not in a positive kind of way. The story explores themes of identity, romance, love, family, and abuse in its many forms. River is a character that readers will quickly learn to love, a character that depicts the typical black experience in a time of heightened racism. She is a fighter and I loved how she fights to claim her place in the world. Crowning Glory River's Journey: A Novel features social and cultural commentaries that take the reader back to an interesting historical era. An engaging read, indeed.