In the summer of 1938, Layla Beck is forced out of the lap of luxury and sent by her Senator father to work on the Federal Writers’ Project, a New Deal jobs program. Assigned to cover the history of the little mill town of Macedonia, West Virginia, Layla envisions a summer of tedium.
However, once she secures a room in the home of the unconventional Romeyn family, she is completely drawn into their complex world.
At the Romeyn house, twelve-year-old Willa is desperate to acquire her favourite virtues – ferocity and devotion – a search that leads her into a thicket of mysteries, including the questionable business with which her charismatic father is always occupied and the reason her adored aunt Jottie never married.
Layla’s arrival strikes a match to the family’s veneer, bringing to light buried secrets that will tell a different tale about the Romeyns and their deep entanglement in Macedonia’s history. As Willa peels back the layers of her family’s story, and Layla delves deeper into town legend, everyone involved is transformed – and their personal histories completely rewritten.
Quirky, loveable, and above all human, this novel of small-town life in the 1930s is an immersive experience that will leave readers reeling and wanting more.