I'm a firstborn, like my mama and my gramma before me. Yet that's where Mercy Kaplan hopes the resemblance will end. Mercy, a Texas sharecropper's daughter, doesn't want to be like her mother, saddled with crying kids and failing crops for the rest of her life. Mercy longs to be on her own-until her wish comes true in a way she never imagined. It is 1918, and a deadly flu epidemic is burning through the world, leaving her utterly alone and penniless. Fortunately, Mercy finds a job with Cora Wilder, caring for the widow's two small children. But there's something unsettling about the woman. How did her brother really die all those years ago? And then there's Daniel, Mrs. Wilder's nearly grown stepson. He's just the sort who could sweep a foolish girl off her feet if she isn't careful. Marian Hale weaves an unforgettable story of love, loss-and murder.