The “story behind the story” of this historical romance separates it from the pack of World War II–era fiction. Taking letters as well as mementos and personal narratives from her own parents, the author shapes their history into a novel with depth and heart. Readers will laugh and cry and frantically turn pages with lumps of dread or joy in their throats, all the while wanting to learn how it ends while simultaneously wishing to remain with these characters forever.
Newly graduated nurse Helen Eberhart enlists in the Army, but before she can go overseas, she finds herself tending wounded soldiers a little closer to home. Frank Daley’s graduation from medical school sees him headed straight to boot camp by way of Helen’s hospital. A chance encounter leads to a whirlwind romance and eventually a wedding, even as Helen and Frank prepare for separate deployments. Amid the dangers of the front lines, they fight another battle—keeping a new marriage alive with only letters to stay connected.
In 1941, Helen Eberhart, RN, and Frank Daley, MD, meet in Battle Creek, Michigan, while preparing to be shipped overseas for wartime duty. Frank admires Helen’s determination and work ethic. Helen loves Frank’s compassion for others. After a brief courtship, they marry—and are promptly sent in separate directions for assignments in European hospitals and mobile medical units. Throughout the war, they rely on letters, heavily censored and often delayed, to nurture their fledgling relationship. Key friendships lead to each developing a stronger faith in God.
Award-winning Mackall mined her parents’ voluminous wartime correspondence to give a fictionalized, detailed, and fascinating look not only at the struggles to maintain a wartime romance, but at the daily rigors, heartbreak, and hazards involved in wartime service. Captivating and realistic, With Love, Wherever You Are will appeal to readers who enjoy 1940s-era romance, adventure, and women’s fiction. Photos of Mackall’s parents add to the novel’s charm.
Starred review. Mackall’s tale of love in the European theater during WWII makes readers feel as though they’re there with Helen and Frank. . . No detail is too small, and no emotion is untapped. . . The no-holds-barred depictions of war, in-depth characterizations, and suspense make Mackall’s historical novel an excellent choice.
Starred review. Mackall has crafted memorable, complex characters who courageously face the tragedy of war . . . the heartbreaking narrative and precise prose will stay with readers long after the final page.
Fact meets fiction in Dandi Daley Mackall's incredible love story, "With Love Wherever You Are," a fictionalized true story of a WWII whirlwind romance and wedding based on over "600 letters tied together with boot laces since 1945." Letters Dandi's father gave to her when he was dying and asked her "not to read" until he and Dandi's mother had passed on.
While her father believed her mother wouldn't want anyone reading about their "mushy melodramas," Dandi believed he was wrong. However, she honored her father's request and waited until her parent's death to write this captivating love story from the perspective of a "real-life couple" from "the greatest generation."
The story begins on December 7, 1941 when student nurse Helen Eberhart, Dandi's future mother, heard over the hospital's PA system: "President Roosevelt says the Japanese have attacked Pearl Harbor in Hawaii from the air..." Stunned, everyone stood around hospital beds and corridors, worried about family, more attacks and if they could complete their nursing degrees and internships. The war until now had seemed distant and far away and Helen didn't know she would soon ask, "Where do I sign up?"
Meanwhile in St. Louis, Missouri, Intern Frank Daley heard the hospital's chief of staff announce "...there has been an enemy attack on our forces...a surprise air attack with multiple explosions...and fatalities..." Until the announcement Frank's overriding concern had been to finish his internship and add MD to his name like all the other interns. For that to happen now, Frank and the other residents would have to enlist with a deferment, hoping the war would be over in a matter of weeks and they wouldn't be needed.
Thus begins a powerful and realistic love story that captures the love, faith and sacrifices of a young doctor and spirited nurse drawn together after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Although it was common knowledge war romances never lasted, Army nurse, Helen Eberhart and Lieutenant Frank Daley, M.D. defied the odds. Their powerful love story reflects the patriotism, the danger, struggles and loneliness of war and their touching concern and care for the "desperately wounded patients" from the "front lines of Europe."
Dandi breathes life into a couple molded by the depression years, a couple who served with honor during WWII and returned home to help rebuild a nation. She knew them as parents. The reader gets to know and love them through their letters and photos. Dandi's strong and warm characterizations combine with realistic dialogue to reflect the historical times and wartime experiences. This is an exceptional, well-done historical romance that will live long in your memory!
Uplifting and endearing, With Love, Wherever You Are tells the real-life story of the romance between an Army doctor and nurse in World War II. With spunk and humor, Frank and Helen navigate the hardships, loss, and dangers of war. Dandi Daley Mackall paints a sweet but accurate picture, and I was hooked. Thoroughly engaging!
Dandi Daley Mackall’s With Love, Wherever You Are is a stirring and emotional WWII novel. I became invested in the characters, seeing the war through their eyes and circumstances. I smiled often, and more than once, I cried. Already I miss spending time with Frank and Helen and the doctors, nurses, and patients who surrounded them, all of them ordinary people thrown into extraordinary and often painful circumstances. Put this novel on your Must Read list for 2017.
With Love, Wherever You Are, is a beautifully written novel. Based on a true story, Dandi Daley Mackall has created a gripping tale using as a framework the lives of a doctor and a nurse serving in Europe during World War II. The novel weaves historical accuracy with the heart-pounding suspense of a long-distance relationship during the worst of times. Not to be missed!
Dandi Daley Mackall has written a masterpiece of true love forged in the harsh furnace of separation, terror, and deep longing as two amazing World War II heroes serve their country. The very real letters, written in the heat of battle, add richness and depth to this story, putting clarity to a living romance.
Dandi Mackall’s With Love, Wherever You Are is a wonderful, sometimes heartbreaking look at what it was like for young lovers, newlyweds, separated by a world at war with only their letters to keep them connected. Touching, romantic and oh, so real.