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Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 392

Be Ever Hopeful, Hannalee, the sequel to Turn Homeward, Hannalee , follows the Reed family as they move from Roswell, Georgia to Atlanta after their home was burned down by Union soldiers. Hannalee's older brother Davey, who served in the Roswell Guards of the Confederate Army, has returned home...

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Be Ever Hopeful, Hannalee, the sequel to Turn Homeward, Hannalee, follows the Reed family as they move from Roswell, Georgia to Atlanta after their home was burned down by Union soldiers. Hannalee's older brother Davey, who served in the Roswell Guards of the Confederate Army, has returned home after the end of the Civil War. Near the end of the war he had been wounded in the left arm and was captured by Union troops. He speaks well of the Union doctors who treated him, saying they strove as hard to save Confederate soldiers as Union ones, but his arm was infected and they had to amputate it just above the elbow. He was a carpenter at the Roswell cotton mill before the war, so he hopes to find work in the rebuilding of Atlanta, much of which had been burned down during the war. He takes his family— his mother, sister Hannalee, little brother Jem, and infant sister Paulina— along with their old family friend Marilla Sanders, to Atlanta. Once there, he soon finds that there is plenty of work for carpenters but little for a one-armed carpenter who must work slowiy.

It is up to Hannalee, Jem, and their mother to find work to support themselves while Davey learns a new trade—telegraph operating, which requires only one hand. Hannalee finds work in a fabric store, Jem works drumming up merchant advertising for a city newspaper, and their mother works as a domestic. Their hardships are many. They take up residence in a shanty in a foul-smelling encampment outside the city; it costs them twelve dollars a month for a miserable place: "I saw a plain dirt floor, two little rooms, six windows with no glass in them, and that was all. There wasn't even a cook stove." It is at its worst in cold, rainy weather.

Be Ever Hopeful, Hannalee is Hannalee's first-person account of how she and her family struggle to establish themselves in Atlanta and to find a better place to live before winter sets in. They have several adventures, including solving a mystery in which Davey is accused of murdering a Union officer. In 1865, Atlanta was under marshall law, so a military court would decide the fate of Davey, a former corporal in the Confederate Army. The penalty for the crime would be death by hanging.

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