Eternal on the Water
Joseph Monninger

Book cover image

Narrated By: Neil Shah

Duration: 11 hours and 26 minutes

What to expect

From the day Cobb and Mary meet kayaking on Maine's Allagash River and fall deeply in love, the two approach life with the same sense of adventure they use to conquer the river's treacherous rapids. But rivers do not let go so easily—and neither does their love. When Mary's life takes the cruelest turn, she vows to face those rough waters on her own terms and asks Cobb to promise, when the time comes, to help her return to their beloved river for one final journey.

Set against the rugged wilderness of Maine, the exotic islands of Indonesia, the sweeping panoramas of Yellowstone National Park, and the tranquil villages of rural New England, Eternal on the Water is at once heartbreaking and uplifting—a timeless, beautifully rendered story of true love's power.


Fiction: general and literary, Fiction: general and literary, Fiction: general and literary

Listen to a sample

“A touching love story immersed in the beautiful simplicity of nature and life lived in the present moment.”

Lisa Genova, New York Times bestselling author

“Joseph Monninger’s Eternal on the Water is a compelling and poignant love story. His two characters, both strong and independent, meet by chance in the Maine wilderness and find in each other the depth of connection they have been searching for and the confrontation with mortality they have been dreading all their lives. Their celebration of life and their emotional parting will touch you deeply and move you to tears.”

Selden Edwards, New York Times bestselling author of The Little Book

Eternal on the Water is more than a heartfelt love story. It is a beautiful and searching exploration of the meaning of commitment and the majesty of nature, told in the strong, clear voice of a true believer. In these pages, there is much to learn of life, death, love, and healing. It’s a book to savor and then to share.”

Susan Wiggs, New York Times bestselling author

Eternal on the Water is a book that reminds you that joy and sorrow are inextricably entwined, that one means less without the other. What would you do if you were Mary, or Cobb? This luminescent story will never leave you. I adored it.”

Dorothea Benton Frank, New York Times bestselling author

“Joe Monninger is a brilliant writer. No one understands nature the way he does, under his skin and straight to his bones. He writes about new love with such tension, emotion, and the deep passion and understanding that develops between two people. The novel will keep you up all night. Eternal on the Water will be a classic.”

Luanne Rice, New York Times bestselling author

“Henry David Thoreau meets Nicholas Sparks in this poignant love story rooted in the forests of Maine…[Monninger’s] keen eye for nature, subtle incorporation of indigenous myths, and use of symbolism make for a memorable story of love and courage.”

Publishers Weekly

“[Neil Shah’s] narration conveys the mystery and beauty of the Maine wilderness and emphasizes the relationship between two soul mates.”


“Poignant…Monninger is a gifted writer…Eloquently rendered.”


“Genuinely enchanting! If you ever went to summer camp, this book is especially for you!”