For Lillian Avery, life couldn't be more exciting. Her Pharmacy School days are over and she has a job waiting for her in Boston. As a woman pharmacist, she is embarking on a career traditionally filled by men. She is undaunted by the challenges of competing with men for jobs because she has met other obstacles head on, including getting through life with one leg after a childhood accident. The accident changed her life but it didn't hold her back despite being a beautiful young woman who wore a prosthesis. She was driven to become the best in her field and make a difference to her patients.
World War II is just about to begin in Sarah Sundin's latest, Anchor In The Storm, Book 2 in her Waves of Freedom Series. Lillian is joined in the story by her brother Jim, his Naval Academy friend Arch Vandenberg and Jim's girl, Mary Stirling. Lillian is put off by Arch, only son in a wealthy family. In her eyes, the handsome young man must be insincere and full of himself. In his eyes, she is a beautiful woman who, unlike other women he met, was independent and indifferent to his wealth. All three travel back to Boston together where the men are assigned to a new destroyer, the U.S.S. Ettinger and Mary has a job as a secretary at the Naval Yard. Lillian planned to room with Mary, so much to her chagrin, she would be thrown into Arch's company when Jim came to see Mary.
On Lillian's first day at Dixon's Drugs when Mr. Dixon discovered her artificial leg. He let her know he hadn't wanted a woman in the first place but a cripple was the last straw. She convinced him to try her for a few weeks and he agreed only if she kept behind the counter so nobody would see her leg. With that hurdle behind her she was determined to keep her job. Right away Lillian noticed an unusual amounts prescriptions for Phenobarbital. She was determined find out why such high amounts of the drug were prescribed. Mr. Dixon, however, didn't want discrediting the drug store with her nosing around on things that she had no business questioning.
In the meantime, Arch was having his own difficulties on board the Ettinger. He suffered from Battle Fatigue, what we now call Post Traumatic Stress. When the Atwood was attacked just before the war began, he was injured in the engine room and still had nightmares and trembling hands. He sought help, was prescribed Phenobarbital and after one groggy dose decided he would fight this on his own. It didn't take long, however, before he began to notice the symptoms among his men. He also recognized signs that some of the men were taking the drugs he had been prescribed. These men were impaired on duty and Arch was going to make it his business to get to the bottom of who and how the men got these drugs.
It was only a matter of time before Arch and Lillian discovered they shared a concern: he for the men who were taking the drugs and she because she knew the high volume of drugs prescribed was above safe limits for anyone. They began an investigation on their own to uncover what had to have been a drug ring.
By joining forces, they also fell in love, something they were both avoiding. She didn't want to trust any man again after a bitter breakup and he was on guard for any woman who preferred money more than the man he was. Both rely on their faith to grapple with the many odds they face in such a turbulent time.
Intrigue, romance and some dangerous waters are what you will find in this book. I was hooked from the beginning. If you read Through Waters Deep, you will enjoy reading more about Mary Stirling and Jim Avery while getting to know Arch better as he and Lillian tread toward their own Anchor In The Storm. A good mystery mixed with romance make for a good book to enjoy with your favorite cup of tea. Many thanks to Revell for the opportunity to review this book, which ended too soon! I am waiting already for Book 3 in this series, When Tides Turn coming March 2017.