Push Not the River

Push Not the River A panoramic and epic novel in the grand romantic style PUSH NOT THE RIVER is the rich story of Poland in the late s a time of heartache and turmoil as the country s once peaceful people are being

  • Title: Push Not the River
  • Author: James Conroyd Martin
  • ISBN: 9781495948411
  • Page: 186
  • Format: Paperback
  • A panoramic and epic novel in the grand romantic style, PUSH NOT THE RIVER is the rich story of Poland in the late 1700s a time of heartache and turmoil as the country s once peaceful people are being torn apart by neighboring countries and divided loyalties It is then, at the young and vulnerable age of seventeen, when Lady Anna Maria Berezowska loses both of her parentA panoramic and epic novel in the grand romantic style, PUSH NOT THE RIVER is the rich story of Poland in the late 1700s a time of heartache and turmoil as the country s once peaceful people are being torn apart by neighboring countries and divided loyalties It is then, at the young and vulnerable age of seventeen, when Lady Anna Maria Berezowska loses both of her parents and must leave the only home she has ever known With Empress Catherine s Russian armies streaming in to take their spoils, Anna is quickly thrust into a world of love and hate, loyalty and deceit, patriotism and treason, life and death Even kind Aunt Stella, Anna s new guardian who soon comes to personify Poland s courage and spirit, can t protect Anna from the uncertain future of the country Anna, a child no longer, turns to love and comfort in the form of Jan, a brave patriot and architect of democracy, unaware that her beautiful and enigmatic cousin Zofia has already set her sights on the handsome young fighter Thus Anna walks unwittingly into Zofia s jealous wrath and darkly sinister intentions Forced to survive several tragic events, many of them orchestrated by the crafty Zofia, a strengthened Anna begins to learn to place herself in the way of destiny for love and for country Heeding the proud spirit of her late father, Anna becomes a major player in the fight against the countries who come to partition her beloved Poland PUSH NOT THE RIVER is based on the true eighteenth century diary of Anna Maria Berezowska, a Polish countess who lived through the rise and fall of the historic Third of May Constitution Vivid, romantic, and thrillingly paced, it paints the emotional and unforgettable story of the metamorphosis of a nation and of a proud and resilient young woman.

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      Published :2020-06-26T13:09:45+00:00

    About "James Conroyd Martin"

    1. James Conroyd Martin

      James Conroyd Martin is the author of Push Not the River, a novel based on the diary of Anna Berezowska, a Polish countess who lived through the rise and fall of the Third of May Constitution After working on the project for some years without raising interest within the publishing community, Martin self published in 2001 Just one year later, St Martin s Press purchased the book and released a hard cover edition in September 2003 Polish and German rights sold almost immediately The Polish edition, Nie ponaglaj rzeki, was released in May of 2005, became a bestseller and sold out in a matter of months Anna s story had come full circle Polish to English to Polish Pod purpurowym niebem, the translation of Against a Crimson Sky,also became a bestseller when published in December of 2007.Martin, who holds degrees from St Ambrose and DePaul Universities, is a longtime English and creative writing teacher at Marian Catholic High School in Chicago Heights, Illinois He is working on his third novel, The Warsaw Conspiracy, a political thriller that will complete the trilogy.


    1. This is one of those books that I should probably think is terrible, but I.Just.Could.Not.Stop.Reading. Supposedly, this novel is based upon an 18th century Polish noblewoman's diary which was suppressed by her descendants for its scandalous content. The heroine, Anna Maria, certainly goes through all manner of trials and tribulations - everything from rape to being caught in her selfish cousin's scheming. Even though the characterizations are a bit thin and the events more than a bit melodramat [...]

    2. After reading some enthusiastic reviews, I decided to read this one -- and I hated it. Set in the late 18th century, it tells the story of a young Polish countess, Anna Maria, who goes through every sort of mayhem and abuse during the partition of Poland by Russia, Prussia and Austria. Improbable situations, one-note characters and 'tell, not show' writing sunk this one for me. I understand there's a sequel, but I'm not going there.For the longer review, please go here:epinions/review/_20008

    3. This book was very educational as well as being one of the best books that I have ever read. I have the sequel "A Crimson Sky" waiting for me at the library. Can't wait!

    4. One of the things I enjoy most about historical fictions is the opportunity it gives me to learn about a certain time period or event(s) that I didn’t know about. It is even better when it is packaged within a story on such a sweeping and grand level such as Gone With the Wind (which I loved). So it’s not surprising that I loved Push Not the River by James Conroyd Martin and gave it the high rating.From the very beginning until the very end, I was thoroughly absorbed in Lady Anna Maria Berez [...]

    5. BOOOOOORING.I was really hoping this one would be interesting, since it's historical fiction about a totally different place and time period than I'm used to -- Poland at the end of the 18th century. But no. Boring boring. The goodies are all good, the baddies are all bad, no one has any motivation for anything they do, and by the last 150 pages I was skimming, had no idea what was going on, and didn't care.And the heroine! TSTL. Her cousin Zofia wonders several times throughout the book what va [...]

    6. PUSH NOT THE RIVER Book 1 of The Poland Trilogy is based on the true eighteenth century diary of Anna Maria Berezowska, a Polish countess who lived through the rise and fall of the Historic Third of May Constitution. James Conroyd Martin, the author, has mastered the art of describing the characters and setting so thoroughly that I visualized the story as if I were actually at Sochaczew with Anna Maria and her parents and then at Halicz and Warsaw with her Aunt Stella, Zofia and Jan Stelnicki. C [...]

    7. I loved this historical novel. It reminded me a lot of "Katherine" by Anya Seton. The characters were so well-developed. I loved our heroine Anna who seemed timid and naive but grew so strong despite her trials. And it has been a long time since a character, who shall remain nameless, has made me so upset! While reading this book I actually went to and read the history of Poland from 1500-present. I found out there is a sequel which I will be interested to read.

    8. Simultaneously Fascinating, Frightening and FantasticJames Conroyd Martin has taken the diary of Countess Anna Maria Berezowska and created a dramatic and moving historical novel. A friend of Martin's, a direct descendant of the Countess's shared her diary with him, he thought her life was fascinating and spent years researching the historical setting for this novelization. He was unable to get his work published and so initially published the book himself.Many times while reading this story I f [...]

    9. “Push Not the River” is a gripping tale of love and loss, not just on a personal scale, but on a national scale, as the Polish nation is finally taken over by the Russians in 1794. “Push Not the River,” is a story based on the Countess Anna Maria Berezowska’s diary which she kept from 1791-1794. Her story is fascinating, compelling, and will have the reader anxiously turning the page to find out what happens next.The story begins with seventeen-year-old Anna reeling from the loss of he [...]

    10. This book disappointed me. I learned very little about the partition of Poland in the eighteenth century that I did not already know, and felt that there could have been more historical detail woven throughout. The author tried, but failed. Good historical fiction should use the fiction and history organically, but there was more of a flavor of a romance novel, than good historical fiction to this book. Despite the fact that this was based on a real live person’s diary, I found the characters [...]

    11. This book was amazing. I am not really good with history, so I was not familiar with a lot of the background in this story. However, in addition to reading a great book, I also had a good history lesson. This is the story of Anna Maria Berezowska, a Polish girl from the town of Sochaczew. When she is 17, she suffers a great loss in her life that leads her down a twisted path. The whole book takes you on peaks and valleys as she suffers then finds happiness over and over again. While she is portr [...]

    12. Overall? I was bored. I did not enjoy Martin's writing, his voice did not feel authentic for a female perspective. I absolutely could not stand Zofia, such a miserable character. Anna was either extremely and foolishly trusting or clueless. It took her nearly the entire book to even understand her cousin's (Zofia's) intentions. Since this is based on an actual journal I fear Anna was foolish and slow. However, I do not know how much creative license Martin used. I definitely hope that the "thoug [...]

    13. This amazing novel is based on the diary of real life Polish Countess Anna Maria Bereskowska. It tells the story through her eyes of Poland's struggle to exist in the late 1700's as more powerful nations seek to divide this country up to suit their own needs. It is a story of Anna's struggle to find her way when she is left an orphan at 17, and goes to make a new home with her aunt, uncle, and cousins. It is a story of the patriotic Polish people, willing to fight to maintain their culture and t [...]

    14. What an absolutely stunning novel this is. I was taken in by the first chapter and became deeply involved as the story went on. Lady Anna Bereszowa, a Polish countess is sent to live with relatives after the tragic death of both her parents within days of each other. There she meets dashing Count Jan Strelniki. By now you may wonder if this is just another silly romance story. absolutely not. Anna has a devious cousin whose machinations cause Anna to endure untold tragedy and misery beginning wi [...]

    15. I picked this up to read after reading Seton's Katherine as the time periods are similar and I thought it would be interesting to learn what was happening in Poland during the French Peasant Revolt in the late 1700's. While the historical backdrop of this book is interesting and informative, the author focused too much on the bed business of the people of that time period. However, the good people are good in the book and the bad people are a chaos of good and bad intentions. It reads a bit like [...]

    16. I had the audio version of this book and didn't like it. The first part of the book was hard to get through but the second half got more into Polish history in the 1790's and I enjoyed it. I might have given it 4 stars if I would have read it instead of the awful voice on the audio version.

    17. Sometimes you must put yourself in the way of destiny.Poland, without a doubt, may be the most inauspicious country in Europe. Its long and turbulent history is filled with a multitude of invasions, occupations, and divisions. From all directions, foes lay in wait to cross her borders and enslave her peoples and partitioned her lands. With no real topographical barriers to protect her from the invading hoards, Poland lay at the mercy of fate and fate seldom smiled on her. With the terror of the [...]

    18. There is very little that could be considered "historical" in this work of fiction. It's always a shame when a less-known historical period/geographical area is appropriated and the exploited without thorough research. It insults the reader who may know something about it and who is eager to read a well-written fictional account of people who may have lived during that time.The premise of this book has such potential, set in 18th-century Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. It makes references to Pol [...]

    19. Let me begin by saying I'm not big into Romance stories and I had a good scare as this one certainly starts out that way. But I had won this in a Goodread Giveaway and I am faithful to reading the books I have obtained in the Giveaways, so I stuck with itd am I glad I did! The history of Poland and it's preservation of language and culture was not something I would ever had pursued had I not won this book. James Martin certainly did his homework before venturing into the writing of this novel. H [...]

    20. This book seemed long at first but I got into it right away. This historical novel takes place during the 1770's in Poland while the French Revolution was developing. Many Polish aristocrats wanted to make reforms not only to save themselves from the guillotine but because they believed in a more democratic way of life for all. Catherine of Russia had her sight on Poland and it was not too long before she helped to divide the opinion of the aristocracy to take over the country aided by Prussia a [...]

    21. According to the author's notes, James Conroyd Martin based "Push not the River" on the unpublished diary of 18th century Polish Countess Anna Maria Berezowsky. I love a good historical novel; "Push" is not one of them. The characters are totally flat (as an aside, a funeral director in this book would be the richest of the rich), and the episodes spin at a fevered pitch, one after another, each with its own far-fetched solution. The book reads very quickly; there are no subtleties to miss. The [...]

    22. Loved this book, as a historical novel it brought some of Poland's history to life for me. It had just enough of everything to keep me turning pages and although I could do without profanity completely, it was sparsely used. I appreciated that the author did not bring what I considered a modern element into the relationships and views of the characters, as I have seen happen in so many other 'historical' fiction books I've read. I loved the Polish proverbs at the head of each chapter, too. Defin [...]

    23. A Polish Gone with the Wind the cover said. Lush. Romantic. So far so good. What they should have added - for truth in advertising's sake - was: Melodramatic. Overwritten. Improbable. There was hardly a main character I found believable, nor did the author miss any opportunity to include set pieces - rape, murder. If there had been rail service at that time, I am certain he would have had Anna Maria tied to the tracks. If you want a saga about the tragic history of Poland, you'd be better off wi [...]

    24. If you loved Gone with the Wind, then pick this one up! I actually would give it 4.5 stars. Historical Fiction based on the unpublished diary of Countess Anna Maria Berezowska. Rich with romance,intrigue, drama,suspense,jealousy and greed,all the while detailing an account of the turbulent times in 18th century Poland.

    25. This is bar none my favorite book. I feel drawn to the Countess in this story because she is a pillar of hope, faith and patriotism in ones country She works to overcome all obstacles in order to continue to live even when adversity is thrown into her path. I highly recommend this book.

    26. A stunning historical work that was rich in depth. I could not put it down. There was not enough of a reprieve in the midst of the story, from the endless miseries of her life, that could allow me to truly love it; despite Anna's miraculously ending up with Jan in the end

    27. Such an amazing book! It was an interesting/addicting way to look at the first partition of Poland. I've read it several times, used it as the basis for a college history paper, and was lucky enough to get a copy signed by the author at Milwaukee, WI's Polish Fest.

    28. Though this book seems intended more for women, I learned a lot about Polish history during the late 18th century. The story itself is exciting and interesting enough for everyone to enjoy.

    29. A very satisfying read on all accounts. Historical fiction at its finest! This book is the first of a trilogy, can’t wait to start the next one!

    30. This was an incredibly moving story. I'm not sure how factual it was, but I am fairly certain the dates and events were correct. I wsn't very familiar with 18th century Poland, and feel I learned a lot as I was entertained. I prefer to get my historical facts that way, so this was the perfect read for me.Right until the end I had a 4 star rating in mind. I really cared about Anna from page one, and I'll be the first to admit she had it rough, poor thing. From the death of her father, brother and [...]

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