Delia Daley and David Strom meet on Easter day 1939. They are at the Washington Mall to hear Marion Anderson sing in front of The Lincoln Memorial. David is a physicist and a professor at Columbia U. He is Jewish, has recently escaped Nazi Germany and has heard nothing about the rest of his family. Delia is black, a singer with a beautiful voice, and the daughter of a dedicated, very intelligent doctor. They marry, naively believing they can navigate the troubles they will encounter. They have three children-Jonah, Joseph and Ruth, and while music is important to all three children, that is where their similarities end.
If you appreciated The Overstory, you will want to read In the Time of Our Singing. Written by Powers fifteen years before The Overstory, it is just as profound, long, difficult, inspiring and rewarding.