Inspired by Marlantes’s own family ancestry, Deep River is a massive American saga, a historical epic of documentary detail spread across the early 20th century – and 700 pages. We witness the traumas of Aino as a sort of proto-Rosa Luxemburg, who with her brothers escaped tsarist persecution and deadly poverty in Finland for America... We learn and grow from the novel, and many will embrace its long-term company and businesslike storytelling. Through girth and plenitude, hefty books often attempt to grab status. Marlantes is far too sincere a writer to be accused of that; yet I believe a shorter book might have given this story so much more power.
"One Booker shortlist later, Galley Beggar were proved correct. Ellmann’s novel isn’t perfect, and it may not take the prize, but in a world where Ian McEwan is still at large, something introspective and richly painted is a tonic for us all...."
— The Daily Telegraph
4.25 out of 5