This is the best fiction I've read in the past five years or more. Set during the years following the Civil War, this is the story of a white widow with a small son who dares to reach out to the colored people in town with love, medical care, and friendship. It's also the story of a young black man whose heart is filled with bitterness from the cruel treatment his people have suffered and his struggle to overcome it to find healing. It's the story of a former soldier who has seen more than his share of pain and loss. Most of all, this is a story of hope, courage, and the restoration that only God can do when hearts are open to His love. This book made me want to stand up and cheer as I read it.