Two Damaged Souls, Two Hearts Entwined, An Unforgettable Story

Des Stewart sees himself as a loser in life and love. Haunted by tragedy, trapped in a dead-end job and responsible for the care of his aging mother who is slipping into senility, he can not envision a brighter future for himself. A new challenge arises when his troubled and volatile niece Phena is left in his care. Set in the years 1917 through 1937, "The Finest Hat in the Whole World" is an unforgettable story of one man's opportunity for redemption and one child's coming of age into womanhood.

"The absolute BEST READ I've had in quite sometime."

 "Beautiful Writing"

 "Depth of Character"

"A Story I Could Not Put Down"

 "A Delightful Read"

"Never Stale or Predictable"

"A Sly Sense of Humor"

"It made me laugh, cry and made me feel I was there."

"My favorite book this year."

"Every character is so well drawn they are painted in a technicolor of words."

2017 Readers' Favorite International Award Winner

    Spanning the years 1917 through 1937, “The Finest Hat in the Whole World” follows Des Stewart and his niece Phena through the decades of the Great World War, flu pandemic, Prohibition, and the Great Depression. Yet, the world’s turmoil is nothing compared to that of their fractured family.

     Des Stewart, “the responsible one,” of his siblings,  has put his life on hold to care for his widowed invalid mother who is gradually slipping into senility. Now thirty years old, he tends bar at a saloon close to home. Burdened with guilt, secrets, and regrets, he is depressed, overweight and apathetic about his future.

   An opportunity for redemption arrives in the winter of 1917 when his nine year-old niece, Phena, comes to live with him. Troubled, temperamental and volatile, the girl has exhausted the patience of her parents. However, Des and Phena have a bond that originated the night of her traumatic birth, a bond that distance and circumstance could never break.

   Can Des overcome his insecurities and bitterness as he molds Phena into an honorable woman?

  And... what does it mean to wear the finest hat in the whole world?


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