cover image By Way of the Moonlight

By Way of the Moonlight

Elizabeth Musser. Bethany House, $16.99 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-7642-3880-2

In this winning family saga from Musser (The Promised Land), a young woman fights to open an equine therapy center on her family’s Georgia estate. In the present day, Nana Dale supports her granddaughter Allie Massey’s dream of launching an equine therapy center on Dale’s Georgia estate, but after Dale dies, her lawyer informs the family that Dale sold the estate to a developer. Allie suspects foul play, and after the lawyer gives Allie a note Dale had written years earlier that alludes to how Allie might be able to save the property, she sets out on a hunt to find a family heirloom. Episodes from Nana Dale’s youth are woven into Allie’s story: Dale grows up in the shadow of the Great Depression and comes of age during WWII, when she falls in love with show jumper Tommy and endures the war’s bleakest hours by leaning on her passion for horses and her Christian faith. Lush and romantic prose (“Dale lay down beside him, gently pulling her body close to his, the fire in his skin warming her along with the balmy breeze of the night, their slow breaths matching”) uplifts this affecting tale that celebrates the hard-won wisdom of elders. This is perfect for book clubs. Agent: Chip MacGregor, MacGregor Literary. (Aug.)