Along the River is a novel that was written by a famous Chinese American writer called Adeline Yen Mah. It was published in early 2009 by Penguin Publishing in hardcover format, and on April 10, 2012 in paperback. The book is part of her Chinese Cinderella series of novels. It is widely regarded as her most successful literary work. The novel reiterates the fact that time generally changes but love and art stay forever.
The novel was inspired by the most prominent painting in China known as "Along the River at the Qing Ming Festival". It tells the story of the relationship between a poor boy and a daughter of a rich man. Their relationship was hindered by the unwavering laws of the Chinese Society. They faced several obstacles but the power of true love and art kept them together.
Unlike many of her other books, Along the River, like all of the other Chinese Cinderella novels, is aimed at a young adult audience. It provides an account of life in China as a teenager. The story entails a young girl's journey back through her memories of a past life. After she has a bad fall, she drifts in and out of consciousness, having dreams that seem strangely familiar. Thus her journey begins. The journey of the girl in the book resembles, at some parts, her own journey as a child and young adult as it is chronicled in her 1997 autobiography Falling Leaves.
Though the novel did not receive awards or critical praise in the traditional sense, Yen Mah was congratulated for being able to translate a story of relatively complex substance into a format which young adults can read, understand, and enjoy with ease. It is because of her many novel like this one that Yen Mah is considered an exceptionally gifted author, and one that will be remembered for many years after she has passed.