An orphaned Victorian heiress becomes friends with an Irish mason who helps her stand on her own and fight for the downtrodden Yorkshire town she comes to love.
When well-to-do Evangeline and Lucy lose their parents and brothers, their rich grandfather sends Lucy to boarding school and forces Evangeline to take over as schoolteacher in Smeatley, a Yorkshire village where he owns a textile mill. Rising to the occasion, she not only figures out how to teach the children to read, but also learns to take care of her meager finances as well as cook, clean, and mend with help from Irish brick mason and single father Dermot McCormick, the first person she meets in Smeatley. It’s not the easy life she expected, but she’s determined to work hard and do anything possible to gain her grandfather’s trust, access her inheritance, and care for Lucy. However, getting to know her students means understanding the Victorian trials their families endure. Choosing to stand up for her Yorkshire neighbors, she fights for them to keep their language and develops texts using their dialect. Evangeline’s conviction and authentic concern for her friends give everyone a new sense of hope, and her strengthening moral compass, aided by her growing feelings for Dermot, opens her grandfather’s eyes to better opportunities for everyone. Determined to be a woman of both dignity and courage, she becomes an agent of change and encouragement. Once again, Eden (For Love Or Honor, 2017, etc.) proves herself a gifted writer dedicated to unique, out-of-the-box storytelling with inspiring and thought-provoking elements.
Exploring one woman’s struggle to find her place in a world where every step forward is a challenge offers an uplifting—and very clean—romance.