So, after complaining about epistolary novels on Monday, I went to the bookshelf and pulled off the next library book and it was another one. I still read it, and it made me reconsider my view on epistolary novels because it mostly managed to avoid the contrived letters. This one worked because the letters are all written by the same person to the same person, and the writer and the receiver don't know each other (well, sort of). So the author is free to use the letters to move the plot along because the letters seem natural.
This book is about 100 years old, and it's in generally the same category as books about young women like The Girl of the Limberlost and Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm. If you like those books, you'll like this one. But if you thought those books were overwrought and sentimental, then you still might try this one, because Jerusha, our heroine isn't at all, or not too much, sentimental. It's a bit predictable, but not terribly so, and it's simply a fun, quick read. Recommended.