Submitted by: Jane Bartow

Category: Books

In “To Elinor: a romance in two voices,” Jane Beaton Bartow portrays the conflicts experienced by women on the home front during World War II.

The war provides Darrow with officer training, but it also offers Elinor new opportunities. While the men were off fighting around the world, women took on new roles, supporting the troops by finding work in factories, in shipbuilding, and in various places women hadn’t been employed previously. As Darrow woos his dream girl with letters from the warfront, Elinor seeks her own independence and a way to escape her small town life—a chance to become Something Big.

Elinor and Darrow struggle to pursue their dreams, but WWII has frustrated their efforts and put their lives on hold.

An excerpt from “To Elinor”:

“Letters, bundled together with thick rubber bands, filled the container. Elinor unwrapped the first pack and stretched the rubber band over her wrist. Letters spilled over the desktop. She took out the earliest notes Darrow had penned to her. She remembered those days, back in the winter of 1941.”

“The story of Elinor tells the tale of a real woman living in a proper family during wartime,” says Bartow. “Elinor is torn by conflicts between the traditional world of her youth and the changing mores of society. I wove the story around the thousand single-spaced, typewritten letters my father sent home during those years.”

The book is available at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

About the author:

Jane Beaton Bartow is a retired elementary teacher and college grad school adjunct from Minneapolis. She wrote To Elinor to tell the story of WWII from a woman's perspective, but the book also includes pages of excerpts from the letters she discovered after her parents' deaths. The book is told in two voices: Darrow's voice from the war and Elinor's from the home front. The author currently resides in Tucson and has taken up the harp.

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