What an impressive book this is! Diane McPhail works a spell on the reader, transporting us to Mississippi in the 19th century, introducing us to a family torn apart by the time and place in which they live. She tells a dark tale, yet it’s laced with lyricism and compassion. This is a powerful, imaginative, captivating book—I’d say, even urgent, considering the time we find ourselves in now.
A tender, sparkling debut that bears gentle witness to the abominations of slavery and oppression while heralding the grace, power and necessity of righting wrongs and choosing love. McPhail is full of talent and heart.
“Diane McPhail excavates a nearly forgotten corner of American history and brings it to full, beating life. This is a fascinating and heartfelt look at the kinds of stories that don’t always make it into the history books.”—Louis Bayard, author of Courting Mr. Lincoln
“A contender, a deeply felt, thoroughly researched story . . . as good as it deserves to be.”
“Complex, vivid, and emotionally engaging. This is a story of harsh realities written with a tenderness that shines through and honors the account of one woman’s struggle to overcome her society’s rules and her circumstances in the face of inconceivable devastation. I couldn’t put it down.”