Andrew Bjorklund and Ellie Wold have known they would wed since gradeschool. Two years before Ellie graduated, her family moved to adifferent community. Her father made the decision to further hisfurniture manufacturing business. It was only an hour away by train, butit may as well have been a thousand miles. Andrew and Ellie had tocontent themselves with staying in touch by letter. Finally, Ellie wouldgraduate in May, and they planned to marry in June.
Andrew’s father asks them to wait for three or four months. He doesn’thave a reason other than he feels God is directing him to ask them towait. Ellie is disappointed but has no real problem with it. She knowsAndrew’s father is a wise man, and trusts his judgment. Andrew, though,is angry about it and doesn’t understand why Ellie is so willing towait. He spends the summer being grumpy and angry about everything andwith everyone.
Ellie moves back to her hometown to work for a friend in her generalstore during the summer. They do not see each other often because Andrewis working day and night with the farm and building their new house andbarn.
We get the idea that Andrew and Ellie think they are the only ones toever experience difficulties and conflicts. The author does an excellentjob of weaving lessons learned into the conversation and privatethoughts of the extended families–the parents and grandparents andolder siblings. They do their best to guide the two youngpeople–amazingly without pushing or lecturing. They have learned totrust God–and each other–and they realize the young people have tolearn those lessons for themselves.
The story takes place in South Dakota at the turn of the century–1900.The author does a good job of showing what life was like there for thesecond generation Norwegian families.
The only negative is that I kept waiting for the plot of the story to beevident. About 10 pages from the end of the book I finally decided theauthor intended merely to open a window into the lives of two youngpeople as they walk through the last few months before their wedding. Iwish I had realized that sooner. I would have enjoyed the book more.