Goodreads Synopsis: Neva Shilling has a heavy load of responsibility while her husband travels to neighboring communities and sells items from his wagon. In his absence, she faithfully runs the Shilling Mercantile, working to keep their business strong as the Depression takes its toll, and caring for their twins.
When a wagon pulls up after supper, Neva and her children rush out—and into the presence of the deputy driving a wagon carrying three young children. The deputy shocks her with the news that Warren and his wife have died, insisting it was their last request that the three children go live with “Aunt Neva.”
Neva’s heart is shattered as she realizes that Warren’s month-long travels were excuses for visits with his secret family. She wants nothing more than to forget Warren, but can she abandon these innocent children to an orphanage? Yet if she takes them in, will she ever be able to see them as more than evidence of her husband’s betrayal and love them the way God does?
My Thoughts: This book really pulled on my heartstrings. The story revolves around Neva, who is betrayed in one of the worst possible ways…she’s betrayed by her husband who is now deceased. My heart broke for Neva as she worked through her emotions that came from the knowledge of her husband’s infidelity as well as his children from his other family. Along with the issues associated with her husband’s death, Neva is also dealing with many other problems that arise.
The story was told in a realistic way. Neva wasn’t quick to accept the new children with open arms, she really struggled with this. The supporting characters were also very well developed. I went from despising a character to really liking them and how they changed throughout the book.
This book takes place during the Great Depression in 1936 and was very interesting to read as I had never read a book from that time period. It was interesting to see how this time seemed to be suspended between the past and the future (some people had indoor plumbing, some had outhouses, some people had cars, some still drove wagons).
I also realized when reading this book that some things never change…people were vicious, gossipy, and nasty back then, just as they are today. Often it seems that historical fiction can glamorize the time periods but this book was straightforward on the flaws of the characters.
I am not one for romance in books but I really liked the one featured in this book. It was told in a very realistic way and was paced properly (no insta-love here!) It was also very sweet. I also appreciated that it wasn’t the main focus of the story.
Overall this was a great story with a great lesson in forgiveness and redemption. I am happy that I gave it a chance!
I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.