Baker Publishing Group|May 1, 2013|Trade Paperback|ISBN: 978-0-8007-2181-7
Hannah Gregory is good at many things, but that list doesn’t include following rules. So when she is forced to apply for a job as a telephone switchboard operator to support her two sisters, she knows it won’t be easy. “Hello Girls” must conduct themselves according to strict – and often bewildering rules. No talking to the other girls. No chatting with callers. No blowing your nose without first raising your hand. And absolutely no consorting with gentlemen while in training.
Meanwhile, young lawyer Lincoln Cole finds himself in the unfortunate position of having to enforce the bank’s eviction of the three Gregory girls from their parent’s home. He tries to soften the blow by supporting them in small ways as they settle into another home. But fiery Hannah refuses his overtures and insists on paying back every cent of his charity.
When one of Hannah’s friends finds himself on the wrong side of a jail cell, Hannah is forced to look to Lincoln for help. Will it be her chance to return to her dreams of studying law? And could she be falling in love?
With historic details that bring to life the exciting first decade of the twentieth century, Lorna Seilstad weaves a charming tale of camaraderie and companionship that blossoms into love. Readers will get lost in this sweet romance and will eagerly look forward to championing each sister’s dreams.
Twenty-year-old Hannah Gregory lost both of her parents from influenza and was left to care for her two sisters: Charlotte and Tessa. Money was tight and if she didn’t find a job soon the three of them would starve. Three months ago, Hannah was attending Drake University studying law, but with the death of her parents and the little money her parents left wouldn’t allow her to continue paying her education and supporting her sisters and herself.
While sitting and eating dinner a knock came at the door. Hannah got up to answer it and it was man named Lincoln Cole who was there representing Iowa Bank and Trust. Unfortunately, he had come with some very bad news. Apparently her father had taken out a second mortgage on their farm and he owed the bank a large sum of money. And, in the three months since their parent’s deaths, Hannah had been unable to make any payments at all. Mr. Cole informed Hannah that the bank was foreclosing on the property but said they could take dishes, their beds, dressers and other personal items but the rest would go to auction. Hannah was very worried. How was she going to move, find a new home and start over all on her own?
Hannah had seen an ad in the grocery store for a telephone operator. They called them “Hello Girls”. Hannah went for a job interview and was hired and would begin training on Monday. The nice thing was that it was a “paid” training and the three girls sure could use the money. She would earn five dollars a week during training and eight when she became a full-fledged operator.
While at the interview, Hannah met another girl, Rosie Murphy who was also hired on as a Hello Girl. At the end of their day, Rosie invited Hannah to her house for tea and snacks and to meet her mother. During their walk, Hannah told Rosie about her parents passing and that the bank now owned their home so she and her sisters needed to find someplace to live. Rosie told Hannah that she could probably help. After being seated at the Murphy’s table with a plate of egg salad sandwiches and ginger cookies, Mrs. Murphy told Hannah that she had a cottage she and her sisters could rent. This was wonderful news for Hannah. And, Mrs. Murphy said she wouldn’t accept: “…a cent until you’re a bona fide operator.” Hannah was excited beyond belief for she had found a job and a small house to rent.
Someone in their small town began setting fires and no one could figure out who was responsible. Within a couple of days, Walt, Hannah’s best and long-time friend had been arrested and thrown in jail. Hannah knew deep in her heart that Walt was innocent and she needed to help him. Lincoln Cole was a lawyer and had helped Hannah and her sisters move to their new home. He had felt so bad about being the one to tell her the bank was foreclosing on their home that he felt it was the least he could do. Plus, Lincoln was quite smitten with Hannah. Hannah thought over her options about how to help Walt and approached Lincoln to ask him if he’d defend Walt. Lincoln not only said yes, but he said he’d do it pro bono – for free! It didn’t take long before Hannah realized that Lincoln had much more than just a passing interest in her. And, Walt also felt the same way about Hannah. Who is the real arsonist? And, who will win Hannah’s heart?
When Love Calls was a smart, sassy, funny, and addictive read. I couldn’t put this book down. Each page turned made me want to read more and more. A huge thumbs up for When Love Calls!
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group."