book cover of We Hope for Better Things
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We Hope for Better Things

(2019)
A novel by

 
 
"We Hope for Better Things has it all: fabulous storytelling, an emotional impact that lingers long after you turn the last page, and a setting that immerses you. I haven't read such a powerful, moving story since I read To Kill a Mockingbird in high school. This book will change how you look at the world we live in. Highly recommended!"--Colleen Coble, USAToday bestselling author of the Rock Harbor series and The View from Rainshadow Bay

*****

When Detroit Free Press reporter Elizabeth Balsam meets James Rich, his strange request--that she look up a relative she didn't know she had in order to deliver an old camera and a box of photos--seems like it isn't worth her time. But when she loses her job after a botched investigation, she suddenly finds herself with nothing but time.

At her great-aunt's 150-year-old farmhouse, Elizabeth uncovers a series of mysterious items, locked doors, and hidden graves. As she searches for answers to the riddles around her, the remarkable stories of two women who lived in this very house emerge as testaments to love, resilience, and courage in the face of war, racism, and misunderstanding. And as Elizabeth soon discovers, the past is never as past as we might like to think.

Debut novelist Erin Bartels takes readers on an emotional journey through time--from the volatile streets of 1960s Detroit to the Underground Railroad during the Civil War--to uncover the past, confront the seeds of hatred, and discover where love goes to hide.

*****

"A timely exploration of race in America, We Hope for Better Things is an exercise of empathy that will shape many a soul."--Julie Cantrell, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Perennials

"I applaud [Erin's] courage, her authenticity, her beautiful turn of phrase, the freshness of her imagery, and the depth of her story that speaks to a contemporary world where understanding is often absent. We Hope for Better Things is a remarkable debut novel."--Jane Kirkpatrick, award-winning author of Everything She Didn't Say

"Erin Bartels's We Hope for Better Things shares the joys and sorrows of three women from different generations. A roller coaster of emotions awaits as you share the lives of these women and hope along with them for better things."--Ann H. Gabhart, bestselling author of River to Redemption

"Storytelling at its finest. Erin Bartels delivers a riveting story of forbidden love, family bonds, racial injustice, and the power of forgiveness. We Hope for Better Things is a timely, sobering, moving account of how far we've come . . . and how much distance remains to be covered. A compulsively readable, incredibly powerful novel."--Lori Nelson Spielman, New York Times bestselling author of The Life List

"There is the Detroit we think we know, and there is the Detroit full of stories that are never brought to the forefront. With We Hope for Better Things, Erin Bartels brings full circle an understanding of contemporary Detroit firmly rooted in the past, with enthralling characters and acute attention to detail. It's a must not just for Detroit lovers but also for those who need to understand that Detroit history is also American history."--Aaron Foley, city of Detroit's chief storyteller and editor of The Detroit Neighborhood Guidebook

"In this powerful first novel . . . Bartels successfully weaves American history into a deeply moving story of heartbreak, long-held secrets, and the bonds of family."--Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

Genre: Inspirational

Praise for this book

"A timely exploration of race in America, We Hope for Better Things is an exercise of empathy that will shape many a soul. Erin Bartels navigates this sensitive topic with compassion as she shifts her readers back and forth between past and present, nudging us to examine the secrets we keep, the grudges we hold, and the prejudices we may help create even without intention." - Julie Cantrell

"We Hope for Better Things has it all: fabulous storytelling, an emotional impact that lingers long after you turn the last page, and a setting that immerses you. I haven't read such a powerful, moving story since I read To Kill a Mockingbird in high school. This book will change how you look at the world we live in. Highly recommended!" - Colleen Coble

"We Hope for Better Things is a remarkable debut novel." - Jane Kirkpatrick

"Storytelling at its finest. A timely, sobering, moving account of how far we've come . . . and how much distance remains to be covered." - Lori Nelson Spielman


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Used availability for Erin Bartels's We Hope for Better Things

Hardback Editions

March 2019 : USA Library Binding
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
ISBN: 1-64358-123-6 / 978-1-64358-123-1 (USA edition)
Publisher: Center Point Pub
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


January 2019 : USA Hardback
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
ISBN: 0-8007-3566-8 / 978-0-8007-3566-1 (USA edition)
Publisher: Revell
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Paperback Editions

January 2019 : USA Paperback
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
ISBN: 0-8007-3491-2 / 978-0-8007-3491-6 (USA edition)
Publisher: Revell
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Audio Editions

February 2019 : USA Audio CD
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
ISBN: 1-66447-556-7 / 978-1-66447-556-4 (USA edition)
Publisher: Recorded Books, Inc. and Blackstone Publishing
Availability: Amazon   


January 2019 : USA Audio edition
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
Publisher: Recorded Books
Availability: Amazon   


January 2019 : Australia Audio edition
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
Publisher: Recorded Books
Availability: Amazon AU   


January 2019 : Canada Audio edition
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
Publisher: Recorded Books
Availability: Amazon CA   


January 2019 : UK Audio edition
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
Publisher: Recorded Books
Availability: Amazon UK   


Kindle Editions

January 2019 : USA, Australia, Canada, UK Kindle edition
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Title: We Hope for Better Things
Author(s): Erin Bartels
Publisher: Revell
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU