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Book Review-River of Love by Rosanne Bittner

by | May 7, 2022 | Book Reviews | 2 comments

This review may contain spoilers, so fair warning, upon reading the review.

About The Book

The third installment of Rosanne Bittner’s memorable Savage Destiny series finds Zeke and Abbie Monroe settled into a cabin along the Arkansas River in southern Colorado, where they build a horse ranch amid challenges to their love and their contrasting worlds. As Abbie bears more children carrying their mixed blood, finding a peaceful family life is something that does not come easily. Zeke’s Cheyenne relatives face broken treaties, and the building of the Union Pacific cuts a swath of violence and change through the lives of white and Cheyenne alike, forcing the Monroe children to face deeply torn loyalties. New and powerful enemies enter this spellbinding story, and Zeke’s love for his Abbie is tested in a totally unexpected way that would devastate the love of most couples with even the strongest relationship. No two people demonstrate the power of love more vividly and with more poignancy than Zeke and Abbie Monroe in River of Love.


“Power, passion, tragedy,…

You helped me understand life itself, the meaning of existence, the simple things that make life joyful.

My Review

First Impressions

River of Love is the third book in the Savage Destiny series and this is the continuation of Zeke and Abbie’s story. I have been eager to get back to their story (but I definitely want to pace myself with this one–anyone that has read Bittner probably can figure out why)., River of Love was just as wonderful as the first two books, and even though there was a aspect to the story that I really struggled with, the overall view of this one is a solid story. I am absolutely delighted in the story that this author delivered and seeing the growth of Abbie and Zeke and their beautiful family We see our family have to face what is happening with the Cheyenne and the historical events that are causing more strain and trial for them. We also get to see some side characters come back into the sphere with Zeke and Abbie and some new friendships and bonds that are built along the way. It definitely was a delightful story that I just wanted to indulge in.


Zeke and Abbie have settled and built their cabin in southern Colorado, they are close to the campground of the Cheyenne people, they have three beautiful children who are growing and thriving. Abbie has just found out she is pregnant with their third child, peace is a fragile thing between the Cheyenne and the white people. There are broken treaties and the building of the Union Pacific which is causing much tension to rise. There is a loss of a family member and the hunt for someone taken from them. There will be separation and heartache for Abbie and Zeke as they will be faced with challenges that will test the bounds of their love. Zeke and Abbie will have to face some heavy trials and will have to learn the power of their love, forgiveness and healing along their journey.

What I Loved

At the top of my head, I can definitely say I am loving Zeke and Abbie more and more. I adore seeing them grow in their relationship and seeing their bond become more poignant and deep with each book. We see them grow in their twenties and the growth of their family from three children to seven children. I absolutely love seeing them together, seeing their marriage be tested and see what their love is capable of. I really adored their strength to forge ahead for their family and for each other. They make mistakes along the way, but they never lose faith in each other. There is such facets that are delivered with this book. Zeke is having to learn to deal with the uncertainty of life, trying to raise his son to be a proud strong good man, while also being the husband that his wife deserves. Abbie on her end is trying to raise her children that will have the best qualities of both worlds. I really was intrigued by some new characters that were introduced. The trials that Zeke’s brothers face. We also see quite a bit of historical events take place in this book as well. It was tough to read certain parts to see the suffering and the pain that were dealt with things like the building of the Union Pacific for example. Rosanne Bittner writes such a compelling story that balances out historical events, with our pair here who face it head on no matter the challenges that they have to face. The growth of their relationship was so vibrant and such a central focus and I just wanted more from them and more.

What I Struggled With

There was one big factor that kept this one from a five-star, and that would the cheating aspect. Even though you understand the situation and it’s a complex one, it was still something I struggle with seeing in a romance, especially with a relationship here. I did admire the maturity of our characters and how they face this test in their relationship.

Overall View

I found River of Love to be a captivating adventure that delivers in a poignant depth to Zeke and Abbie’s relationship. Its a story of trial and tribulation, of healing and growth and the true power of love, can bring to one’s soul!

Title: River of Love

Author: Rosanne Bittner

Genre: American West Historical Romance

Format: eBook

Source: Library

Length: 384 Pages

Amazon| Barnes and Noble| Kobo| Goodreads| LibraryThing| StoryGraph| Literal Club

Book Evaluation

Storytelling Quality: 4.5

Story Itself: 4.25

Character Development: 4

Writing Style: 4.5

World Building 5

Feels + The Romantic Heart 5

Pacing 4.25

Plot 4

Cover Art 4

Ending 4

Book Ratings

Overall Rating of the Book

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Steam Level

Simmering—soft warm touches and light intimacy

Warm- a medium level of sexual tension, a balance of sexual and emotional intimacy, lighter on the details in the sexual moments.

Steamin’ up the room -the sexual content is more explicit in the language and tone, heavier amount of sexual scenes.

Blazing fire to the building-The prime focus is the sex scenes, scorching hot, and could burn one. Less focus on the emotional intimacy to the relationship.

Trigger Warnings

Violence, Death, Rape, Racism, Cheating

Series Order

Savage Destiny

Sweet Prairie Passion-Pub 1983 #1 in the Series

Ride the Free Wind-Pub 1984 #2 in the Series

River of Love-Pub 1984 #3 in the Series

Embrace the Wild Land-Pub 1984 #4 in the Series

Climb the Highest Mountain-Pub 1985 #5 in the Series

Meet the New Dawn-Pub 1986 #6 in the Series

Eagles Song-Pub 1996 #7 in the Series

About Rosanne

I am a USA-TODAY best-selling author with 40 years, 75 books, and numerous writing awards behind me. I have always written for standard publishers but am now writing strictly for Amazon so I have more freedom to write real history. My most recent publication is JOURNEY TO HIGH LONESOME. It’s the third book in my “Men of the Outlaw Trail” series (each book is an independent story). RIDE THE HIGH LONESOME and LAWMAN IN THE HIGH LONESOME are the first two, and more books are planned. My best sellers are my SAVAGE DESTINY series (7 books) and my OUTLAW HEARTS series (now working on #6 – BLAZE OF GLORY – coming November 2021). See my website (www.rosannebittner.com) for details on all my books – most available for Kindle and in print. I am known for great love stories filled with real history and high emotion. I have also written many Native American stories, all based on real history.

I love American history. For those of you who have not yet read my books, my stories are generally set in the American West of the 1800s and feature vividly described, historically accurate settings that span the US from Missouri to California, from Canada to Mexico. Many of my books portray the poignant history of our Native Americans, and though the characters are my own, I use real historical locations and events in all my novels. I have also written about the Civil War, the American Revolution, the war with Mexico (the Alamo), and the war of 1812.

National magazine ROMANTIC TIMES has called me the “Queen of Western Romance” and an “emotional powerhouse.” My husband and I have traveled the west for nearly 40 years and I have visited just about every location mentioned in my books.


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  1. Sophia Rose

    Ugh! I really need to get busy on her older series and backlist. I do know what you mean about the way her books tend to wear a reader out with the emotions- at least they do me. I love the way she sticks with a couple and creates such sagas of her stories.


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