The Summer Before the War

The Summer Before the War by Helen Simonson is charming. It takes place in Rye, UK beginning in 1914 and is delightfully atmospheric. The town is about to welcome its first female Latin teacher. Her arrival sparks romance and change, with the whole town on the edge of a time that will end their innocence. The war arrives and effects everyone in different ways, obviously not all of them happily. The characters are well developed and realistic. This is a sweet book without being saccharine.