Eight-year-old Elsie Dinsmore is enjoying a blissful Christmas holiday season with her family and friends when a crisis arises that threatens life as she knows it. She believes that obeying a request her father has made would violate her conscience, and she must refuse him. He, in turn, believes Elsie is being willful and disobedient, and he fails to see her refusal as a matter of her deep, abiding faith in God.
Elsie clings to the promise that her heavenly father will never leave her nor forsake her as, one by one, all the things she holds dear are taken from her, including even her fathers presence. The turmoil brought on by this conflict contributes to a life-threatening illness for Elsie and a life-changing crisis for her father. Meanwhile, her faith is tested to the limits.
Martha Finley (1828-1909) was born in Chillicothe, Ohio. She lived a quiet life and began writing, it is believed, during the Civil War when she was bedridden with a back ailment. She wrote twenty-eight books in the Elsie Dinsmore series over a period of thirty-eight years. In addition, she wrote more than fifty other short works and pamphlets, primarily for children, but it was the Elsie Dinsmore series whose popularity persevered over the years.
Marguerite Gavin grew up on the Chesapeake Bay. She holds an M.F.A. in acting and a B.F.A. in theater. An actress working in theater and audiobook narration, she is also artistic director of a youth theater program. She lives in the Washington, D.C., area with her husband and son.
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