Through Rushing Waters
By Catherine Richmond

Reviewed by Martha Artyomenko

Sophia Makinoff is smart, beautiful and able to hold her own as a teacher in a women’s college in 1876. Her life is planned out, but when the man she expects to marry, proposes to her sloppy roommate, she tastefully finds another opportunity to move on with life. When she finds herself, in a remote Indian agency post as a missionary, instead of the romantic Chinese one she imagined, she is surprised, but like every other change in her life, she makes the best of it.
The people there that she comes to know and love, become a part of her heart and soul, while teaching school to the young indian native children, getting to know the others on the post, especially Will Dunn, the builder.
Love is far from her mind though, as they deal with intense problems with the leaders of the country whom are neglecting and abusing the native people. Starvation, lack of clothing and materials to build with, are just a few of the problems they faced.

I found the theme of “Through Rushing waters” throughout the book to be particularly inspiring. Sophia faces many hardships, and when she sees them as just rushing waters, it helps her to get through them and face them. Ms. Richmond weaves a tale of Native American history, along with background on how the Native people were acknowledged by the American government as people with rights, something I had not read much about before. The cruelty from others towards uneducated people whom thought nothing of treating a man or woman less than human because of their skin color appalled me and this book really brings that to life.

Sophia’s religion was interesting to me as well, seeing that she was Russian Orthodox, and a missionary. I found it interesting that in this story the board of Foreign missions sent her even when she was of a different faith. When there is Russian history ever included in a book, it fascinates me, seeing as I am part of a Russian family for the past 15 years. The Russian Orthodox people that I have come in contact with, did not have a relationship with the Lord, so that fascinated me as well, seeing the changes.

This book was one that I savored and was disappointed when it ended. I wished for more, especially at the end, wanting more details without skipping years of time, but that is the key to a good book!! Right? You never want it to end!

This book was provided for me for review by BookSneeze. The thoughts and review are my own.

I review for BookSneeze®

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  1. Cathy Richmond

    Martha, Thank you so much for your insightful review of Through Rushing Water!
    The Poncas story is amazing – what strength, courage, and perseverance to survive!
    How interesting you have Russian Orthodox connections! When people of this faith trickled into the US, they were welcomed by the Episcopalian Church. Sophia’s relationship with Jesus was shaky at first, but she learned to depend on Him.
    Martha, you might enjoy Dani Pettrey’s Submerged. She brings in some Russian history in early Alaska into a romantic suspense.
    Blessings on your mission!

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