Whispers Along the Rails
In this, Miller’s second novel set in the 1890’s “company town” of Pullman, Illinois, Olivia Mott is not only working as an assistant chef at the Hotel Florence but riding the rails incognito, checking to see how Pullman’s services can be improved—or does her enigmatic boss, Mr. Howard, have another goal in mind? Meanwhile, Olivia’s former suitor, Fred, finds himself becoming involved in the labor movement, while lack of money causes Charlotte, daughter of an earl and mother to an out-of-wedlock child, to move into a settlement house in Chicago and take a job at the Marshall Field department store.
Whispers Along the Rails is well researched, well plotted, and peopled with sympathetic, three-dimensional characters who must make increasingly complicated—and risky—decisions as their situations become firmly intertwined. As was the case with its predecessor, In the Company of Secrets, Miller leaves the reader hanging and eagerly awaiting the next installment. (Fortunately, the recipes that Miller includes in the back matter can be enjoyed straightaway—allowing, of course, time for cooking.)