Set during WWI in Oklahoma, Playing by Heart follows main characters Lula and Chet as they struggle with family obligations. Lula is a pioneer in women’s education as she is on track to become the state’s first PhD in mathematics. Chet has promised his brother Clay that he, Chet, will remain on the homefront with their widowed mother. Chet finds purpose in his school teaching job and his basketball coaching role with the local high school. He lacks his mother’s support, though, for his decisions. As an unmarried woman, Lula is asked to step into a support role for her recently widowed sister and her four children. These two must lean heavily on God to support them through these difficult decisions and circumstances. Author Mateer constructs great characters with depth and the reader feels a kinship with the characters.
Thanks to Bethany House for providing me an advance copy to review.