Dare Not Tell

Twenty years after he left the World War I battlefields of France, Australian Joe Parker thinks he has tamed all his demons. His American wife Sophie, a wartime nurse, thinks she knows all his secrets.

He hasn’t. She doesn’t.

July 1939. Sophie and Joe are looking forward to a long-delayed honeymoon in France before they sail home to Sydney. But visiting the site of a battle where Joe fought twenty years earlier wreaks havoc with their itinerary and their marriage.

When they arrive at Villers-Bretonneux, the location of Joe’s most brutal battle, his long-buried memories erupt, including the ones he never told Sophie. And an impromptu trip to the French Alps only makes things worse when they discover German war artifacts on pristine alpine trails and the walls of the miles-deep Chamonix valley close in on him like the deepest trench he ever experienced. All the defenses he uses to hold his memories at bay start crumbling as the world teeters on the brink of a second world war.

Bonds of friendship and shared experience helped them survive the Great War, but Sophie begins to doubt how well she really knows her husband when the foundations of their relationship seem to shift out of control. Can their marriage survive? Or will Joe’s need to keep his secrets break both their hearts?

Join Sophie and Joe on their journey of love and loss, secrets and redemption, from Paris and the Somme battlefields, to Australia, and back again via the French Alps.

Dare Not Tell will be released in paperback and e-reader formats in November 2021.


Hello and welcome! I’m Elaine Schroller. My latest adventure is writing historical novels. Dare Not Tell, my first novel, will be published in November 2021. After that comes the next chapter of Sophie and Joe’s story which is set in Australia and the South West Pacific Area during World War II.

Would you like to join me on this adventure? I’d love to have you with me!

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I’m a history major and long-time technical writer who devoured historical fiction and historical mysteries on nights and weekends as a way to escape from writing about computer software during the workday. Then, as the old joke goes, a miracle occurred, and I began wondering if I could write the same sorts of books I enjoy reading. The early answer was no, I couldn’t. I had to learn how to write, plot, refine storylines, and dig more deeply than I thought possible into character psyches. Five years and innumerable drafts later, Dare Not Tell has been released into the world.

I grew up in Houston, Texas and southern California, and attended high schools in Algiers, Algeria, Northwood, England, Clear Lake City, Texas, Beirut, Lebanon, and Kingston-upon-Thames, England. For many years I’ve lived in Bellaire, Texas. My husband and I raised our son here. Now we have three rescue cocker spaniels underfoot and travel as often as we can convince our son to come and look after the dogs for us.

I’m writing the next chapter in Sophie and Joe’s story; it’s set in Australia and the South West Pacific Area during WWII. There may also be a story in the works about the Acadians who were expelled from Nova Scotia by the British in the mid-1700s. Or I may go back to WWI— Sophie and Joe brought that era to life for me and now it’s deeply entrenched in my heart and mind.

I’m also Bellairian on Archive of Our Own, a site for fiction and other works created by fans of TV shows, movies, books, etc. You don’t need an account to read or comment on stories there.

Come join me on this adventure! I’ll save a seat for you!

Copyright © 2021 Elaine Schroller