Shirley Hollister pushed back the hair from her hot forehead, pressed her hands wearily over tired eyes, then dropped her fingers again to the typewriter keys, and flew on with the letter she was writing. There was no one else in the inner office where she sat. Mr. Barnard, the senior member of the firm, whose stenographer she was, had stepped ...Read MoreShirley Hollister pushed back the hair from her hot forehead, pressed her hands wearily over tired eyes, then dropped her fingers again to the typewriter keys, and flew on with the letter she was writing. There was no one else in the inner office where she sat. Mr. Barnard, the senior member of the firm, whose stenographer she was, had stepped into the outer office for a moment with a telegram which he had just received. His absence gave Shirley a moment's respite from that feeling that she must keep strained up to meet his gaze and not let trouble show in her eyes, though a great lump was choking in her throat and the tears stung her hot eyelids and insisted on blurring her vision now and then. But it was only for an instant that she gave way. Her fingers flew on with their work, for this was an important letter, and Mr. Barnard wanted it to go in the next mail. As she wrote, a vision of her mother's white face appeared to her between the lines, the mother weak and white, with tears on her cheeks and that despairing look in her eyes. Mother hadn't been able to get up for a week. It seemed as if the cares of life were getting almost too much for her, and the warm spring days made the little brick house in the narrow street a stifling place to stay. There was only one small window in mother's room, opening against a brick wall, for they had had to rent the front room with its two windows. But, poor as it was, the little brick house had been home; and now they were not to have that long. Notice had been served that they must vacate in four weeks; for the house, in fact, the whole row of houses in which it was situated, had been sold, and was to be pulled down to make way for a big apartment-house that was to be put up. Where they were going and what they were going to do now was the great problem that throbbed on Shirley's weary brain night and day, that kept her from sleeping and eating, that choked in her throat when she tried to speak to Mr. Barnard, that stared from her feverish eyes as she looked at the sunshine on the street or tried to work in the busy monotony of the office.Read Less
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This might be my all-time favorite Grace Livingston Hill story. Reading about the close, loving family life of the characters and the hope founded in their faith that God would work things out for them is so very up-lifting. There is some romance involved, but it is of a pure, down-played nature. Using what you have to it's best advantage and seeing 'possibilities' in all things are common themes here. This is a great story for these times of economic uncertainty when so many are turning to 'frugality' for the first time. Mostly, though, it is just an enchanted story that ends way too soon. I have read this book many, many times and plan to read it many more!
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