This is a continuation of a story about a family of French-Canadians living in Northampton, Massachusetts. If you have not already met these characters in "Forgive me, Father," meet them here. The time now is 1941. Newsreels shown before every movie pictured Hitler making speeches, storm troopers marching through villages and bombs raining down on England. Newspapers were full of front page stories of Japanese soldiers wreaking havoc as they swept through the Asian continent. Men discussed the probability of going to war and women wept at the thought.
Pete Billieux and Ray Carpenter declare it is their duty to enlist as the family clusters around the radio listening to the news of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Despite the pleas of the women the men go to war. This is the story of the women left behind to learn how to drive a car, handle money, grow a "victory" garden and work in a bomb-making factory. It is also about the lives of two men, following different paths, who endure boredom, frustration, venality, fear and pain. In letters back and forth between stations in England, France, North Africa, Sicily and Northampton, each of them remember the importance of family and the endurance of love.
This book covers the time period between 1941 and 1945. The country was swept with patriotic fervor. Every man in the service felt that the cause was just, that the evil of Hitler and his Nazi Party and the warmongering of the Japanese Military leaders must be stopped. Factories ran night and day to produce the necessary equipment to win the war. There was no doubt in anyone's mind that the war would be won, even knowing that the cost in lives of brave young men would be high.
This is a tale of ordinary heroes, gallant men and women. They are complex individuals, full of contradictions, passionate in their commitments, courageous, infuriating and exasperating, all at the same time. You will recognize them from your own family histories and remember them long after you turn the last page.