cover image Hope at Dawn

Hope at Dawn

Stacy Henrie. Grand Central/Forever, $8 mass market (384p) ISBN 978-1-4555-9880-9

Henrie’s first Of Love and War smalltown inspirational, set in 1918, pairs newly-minted schoolteacher Livy Campbell with morally upright immigrant Friedrick Wagner in a sweet romance imperiled by ethnic bigotry. After Livy is abandoned at a dance by her drunken fiancé, a handsome stranger dances with her and tips her off about a job in Hilden, Iowa, where many German immigrants live. Though at first Livy fears the Germans are disloyal to the U.S., she soon becomes outraged by the way other townspeople treat them. Her attraction to Friedrick makes her concerns very personal. Anti-German sentiment on the home front, a disgruntled suitor, and the influenza epidemic slightly enliven a relationship whose scant internal conflict is too easily resolved. Though the romance is low-key, readers seeking enlightening historical detail or a comforting story in which faith and rectitude overcome bigotry will be entertained. Agent: Jessica Alvarez, Book Ends. (July)