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Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell
In Once Upon a River, 16-year-old Margo Crane lives with her father along the banks of the Stark River in rural Michigan. Her mother's whereabouts are unknown. Margo is raped by an uncle and her attempt at revenge leads to her father's death, so she decides to set out on her own. She forges a life for herself along the river, while searching for her mother. It's a dangerous trek, but Margo is home on the river. She must find the resources and courage if she's to succeed in her task, and find herself along the way. Bonnie Jo Campbell's novel has received positive reviews with the Minneapolis Star Tribune saying, "In Once Upon a River, Bonnie Jo Campbell has given us a haunting moral story, rich with evocative descriptions of the delicacies of nature in the presence of indelicate characters."