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Practice House (Paperback) (Laura McNeal)
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Nineteen-year-old Aldine McKenna lives with her sister and aunt in small-town Scotland in 1929. The girls are mostly stuck at home completing their aunt’s chores, utterly bored. When Aldine’s sister meets an American Mormon missionary and moves to New York with him, Aldine makes the trip as well, with the promise of a job.
Feeling restless and out of place living with her sister and brother-in-law, Aldine answers an advertisement soliciting a teacher for a one-room schoolhouse in rural Kansas. What she doesn’t realize is that in the Midwest, farms have already begun to fail. Schools don’t have enough money either to pay or house teachers, so Aldine must live with the family of the married man who advertised for a new teacher: Ansel Price. But just as Aldine begins to settle into her new life in the Great Plains, she and Ansel fall in love despite their best intentions, and Aldine’s future is suddenly put in jeopardy.
Laura McNeal’s novel is a monumental love story that is, like Aldine McKenna herself, deeply human and truly unforgettable.