April 10, 1919. The war in Europe, the Great War, the War to End All Wars, is over-America and her allies have defeated the German forces. The USS Mongolia
arrives in Boston carrying nearly 5,000 soldiers and sailors returning from France. Thousands are gathered on Commonwealth Pier to welcome the returning doughboys, dancing, waving flags, singing, and celebrating the safe return of their loved ones.
But war changes things. It changes nations, and it changes people, both those who fought and those who waited anxiously back home. One soldier among the thousands arriving in Boston on this day is not joining in the celebrations. He is a young man from Holyoke, Massachusetts. He enlisted out of a sense of duty to his nation, little knowing the pain, the hurt he would suffer. His wounds are not those of gunshots or mustard gas or influenza, they are wounds of the heart and the soul, and they are deep.
In Darkest Before Dawn
, Book 4 of the Trolley Days Series, Massachusetts author Robert T. McMaster traces the lives of four young people growing up in a time of turmoil and wrenching change for their country, their hometown, and themselves.
"Darkest Before Dawn
looks at the class barriers and tensions in early 20th-century America and the often rigid social mores of the era...Readers of the previous books in the series will likely want to follow along with Jack, Tom and the other characters in this new novel." Steve Pfarrer, Daily Hampshire Gazette
"[McMaster] appears to have found an enticing way to blend history with the excitement and suspense of a good mystery." Mike Lydick, Greater Springfield Reminder "I couldn't put it down,"
writes one reader of Darkest Before Dawn
. Intrigued by the story's twists and turns, another reader says of the stunning conclusion, "I did not see that coming."