Ada Weiss sings with her family to entertain the miners at the Juneau Opera House. She has one young man who comes to visit even if she isn’t singing. The bartender or her brother chaperone them. Tom Hickok can play the piano, too, and he even plays some songs for her. They play tunes together on the piano and make music themselves while doing so. But is he serious about her? And would she consider a man of less status than she has?
The author writes a nice western town tale here of an innocent romance that grows into something stronger with time. The main characters are sweet, but they also have their own sense of right and wrong and are willing to defend it. When Tom visits a bit too much to please his boss, he’s asked work ten days straight. He agrees, already regretting the time that will be lost. His boss makes him feel better by telling him he can write to his lady.
Ms. Lovegreen writes of the prejudice shown the Chinamen working at the mines. Unfortunately, this is a historical fact that still exists in today’s society. The color of the faces may have changed but it’s still here. Being different is often seen as being bad. She demonstrates this by having the Chinese mineworkers run out of camp and being sent to another location. She adds it to the story of Ada and Tom by having them defend China Joe, who owns a shop near the opera house.
This is a sweet, easy tale to read. It reminds of you times in the past when chaperones were necessary and no one married without their parent’s permission. I found myself rooting for Tom before the story was done. I bet you do, too.
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