Hope Yancey is a young waitress living with her aunt Addie, a restaurant chef. They constantly move around the country when the diners at which they work fail, and Hope is tired of constantly having to leave old friends and make new ones. Hope and Addie end up moving to Mulhoney, Wisconsin, where they both work at a small-town diner owned by G.T. Stoop, a kind man who suffers leukemia. Stoop is unhappy about the corrupt government in the town, and decides to run for mayor himself, despite a vicious smear campaign run by the incumbent, Eli Millstone. Hope, Addie, and the rest of the diner's employees band together to help their boss win the election against all odds.

A young adult novel by JoanBauer, ''Hope Was Here'' is a Newbery Honor winner.

!!'''This book provides examples of:'''
* BenevolentBoss: G.T. Stoop is this.
* CloseKnitCommunity: Mulhoney.
* CorruptPolitician: Eli Millstone fits this trope to a tee.
* DisappearedDad: Hope never knew her father, and was desperate to find out why he left.
* EmbarrassingFirstName: Hope's real name is [[spoiler:Tulip]]. She hated it, and legally changed it to Hope when she was 12.
* FoodPorn: Don't read this when hungry.
* HappilyAdopted: Hope's mother gave up her daughter to her sister Addie because she didn't want the responsibility of raising a child. Hope loves her aunt, and always dreads the rare visits from her natural mother. [[spoiler:She also gets a loving father once Addie marries G.T.]]