The Whiskey Creek Water Company (2013) by Jan Walker takes place in the small town of Burke Bay on Puget Sound in Washington State. The story begins just before the Thanksgiving holiday in 1932, when stranger Farley Price arrives in town with his family, looking for work and trouble. His daughter Hannah loves books and endears herself to the school teacher. His abused wife Eleanor settles into the community and wants to stay.
Schoolteacher Maeva Swanson ignores gossip about Farley, even the warnings from her fiance, boat captain Axel Jenson. The newcomer has been hired to deliver liquor for Orval Blevins, who owns the headwaters of Whiskey Creek.
Hauk and Lang Nordlund, quiet bachelor brothers, admire unavailable Maeva and Eleanor and patiently wait for their opportunity to step into an already volatile situation.
This story gives the reader a look into small town life during the Great Depression, when prolonged unemployment and economic uncertainty blended with the struggles of family and community life.