Lulu earned the prestigious Donnally Mathematics Award, the first time the award was won by a woman. This award granted her a teaching job and tuition while she did graduate studies. Pulled back to Dunn after the untimely death of her brother-in-law, her oldest siblings decide she will give up Donnally Award and teaching at the college to support her widowed sister Jewel with her five children.
Set during World War I, our story settles on Lulu and Chet Vaughn, a handsome young teacher at the high school in Dunn Oklahoma. Both Lulu and Chet are living their lives to please others. Neither Chet nor Lulu have intentions to marry. Strict conduct rules were enforced, mostly against the women teachers of the day and Lulu was determined to abide by them. An unlikely friendship begins when Lulu gets a job as the Music Teacher under condition of coaching the girls basketball team!
Chet has remained in Dunn to live with his mother while his brother is off fighting the war in Europe. Chet has a difficult time living with his mother but finds refuge in his faith and in coaching the boys basketball team. He is a champion for his students and works hard both in the classroom and on the basketball court to encourage his students to graduate from high school.
The story is filled with rich characters who lived in a very different time than young teachers today. I thoroughly enjoyed the book, the people and the glimpse the early days of basketball. I didn't realize the game was played by girls back then. I can only imagine the girls on our local high school teams going back in time and wearing such cumbersome uniforms! If I were in a book club, this would be a selection; there are questions on Anne Mateer's website to start a good discussion!