Please welcome author Pat Jeanne Davis to Whispers in Purple. Pat has a new release out and is here to share about her story. There's a Giveaway, too. See below for details.
When Valleys Bloom Again
As war approaches in 1939 Abby Stapleton’s safety is under threat. Her father, a British diplomat, insists she go back to America until the danger passes. Abby vows to return to her home in London—but where is home? With her family facing mortal danger so far away and feeling herself isolated, she finds it hard to pray or read the Bible. Did she leave God behind in war-torn London too? Abby becomes friendly with Jim, a gardener on her uncle’s estate.
Jim can’t get Abby out of his mind. Did she have a sweetheart in England? Was it foolish to think she’d consider him? He curses his poverty and the disgrace of his father’s desertion and drunkenness haunts him. Can he learn to believe in love for a lifetime and to hope for a happy marriage?
Abby couldn’t know the war would last a long time, nor that she would fall in love with Jim—soon to be drafted by the U.S. Army—or that she’d have to confront Henri, a rejected suitor, determined by his lies to ruin her reputation and destroy her faith in God’s providence. Will she discover the true meaning of home and find happiness with Jim?
Partial excerpt from Chapter Fifteen:
Main Line Philadelphia
Abby sat in the middle of a group of children, reading aloud a favorite story. She looked up to see Carol at her side. “Jim’s on the telephone. I’ll fill in here,” she said, taking the storybook out of Abby’s hands. “He says it’s important.”
She rose from a stool, her heart beating faster. Jim wrote whenever possible and only called occasionally—but never in the middle of the day. It must be urgent.
When out of sight, she sprinted down the hall, dropping breathless into a wooden chair beside the telephone. “Hello, Jim,” she said, pressing the receiver tight to her ear, as if to draw him closer.
“Hello, Darling. I had to call. But I haven’t got long to talk.”
“Jim ... Jim?” Leaning forward, she rapped the cradle switch. “Are you there?”
“I’m here. Sorry to call like this,” he said, his voice cracking. “They’re shipping me out.”
She slumped back in the seat. “When?”
“I board a train for New York next week. Then a troopship.” Abby attempted to speak, but a lump rose in her throat.
“Sweetheart, I’m sorry I won’t see you before I leave,” he said in a subdued voice. She swallowed hard. “Can’t I meet your train s-s-somewhere?”
“I looked into that. There’s nowhere.” The hopeless tone in his voice was unmistakable. “Then I’ll come to New York.”
“No time for that.”
Her eyes filled. “No time for us?”
“Besides, there’s no more furloughs or passes. Look. It’s not all bad. I’ll probably get to London. Maybe even see your parents when I get a pass.”
Abby sensed he was struggling for words.
“So, that’s at least a cheerful bit of news, isn’t it?”
“S-S-Some,” she said, trying to conceal disappointment in her voice. “Darling, there’s a line of men waiting to use this phone. I’ll have to go.”
She was losing the battle to stay calm and accepting. “Must you hang up so soon?”
He cleared his throat before speaking again. “I’m not so good at always saying what I feel. Still, you know how much I love you.” His voice carried a wealth of emotion. “I’ll be back.”
“I’ll be waiting for you,” she said, then mumbled a muted, “goodbye.” With a click, their connection was severed.
She replaced the receiver and closed her eyes, her lower lip trembling. She hadn’t reacted the right way to his disappointing news. After all, Jim was being sent off. He was the one at risk, not her.
When she got back to the room Carol and the children were gone. She cleaned the blackboard and tidied up before leaving. Then she strolled to the tower and sat there until the light faded. How much longer would this war go on? Scenes from the latest Pathé newsreel—devoted to the progress of the war— flashed before her eyes. Please, Lord, keep Jim safe.
© Pat Jeanne Davis 2019 – When Valleys Bloom Again – Elk Lake Publishing
When Valleys Bloom Again can be purchased here;
Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/when-valleys-bloom-again-pat-jeanne-davis/1130351044?ean=978194888892
PAT JEANNE DAVIS lives in Philadelphia, Pa with her British-born husband, John, and four cats. They have two grown sons. She enjoys flower gardening, genealogy research and traveling with her husband. She is a volunteer in the nursery at the church she attends and at the local chapter of MOP’s.
Pat published essays, short stories and articles online and in print. She has a keen interest in mid-twentieth-century American and British history, particularly the period of World War II. Pat’s father-in-law served in the British Eighth Army during the war. When Valleys Bloom Again is her debut historical romance set in that era. She is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers and the Historical Novel Society. Pat loves to hear from her readers. Subscribe to her newsletter here www.patjeannedavis.com
ABOUT THE GIVEAWAY:
Pat is offering to give away a Print Copy of When Valleys Bloom Again to one of my blog readers. To enter, just leave a comment below including your name and contact information so we can notify you if you're the winner. This giveaway runs for one week from today, ending Wednesday, February 27 at MIDNIGHT, CST. Winner will be randomly drawn and notified via email on Thursday, Feb. 28. Be sure to check your INBOX.
Thanks, Pat, for being my guest today. God bless you and your writing.