You are only allowed one question per eNotes post, so I kept your first one. In Peace Like a River, Roxanna is the only real, normal adult female. Swede and Reuben, and even Davy, are relatively well adjusted children despite not having a mother figure in their lives. In fact, they are rather exceptional children, undoubtedly due to their exceptional father. When Roxanna enters their lives (or they enter hers), there is a new balance in the family. She offers stability and "normalcy" to this otherwise rather quirky family; yet she is also quirky and out of the ordinary. It takes a strong woman to be relaxed and flexible enough to adapt to the Land family dynamic, and Roxanna is just that. The courtship between Jeremiah and Roxanna is sweet and pure, and their relationship (then marriage) provides a calmness and stability which this family is craving after so much instability and outrageousness.