The Civil War comes to an end as the South—and the hopes of freedpeople—buckle under Reconstruction in this “powerful saga of ongoing strife” (Midwest Book Review).
A 2021 American Fiction Awards Finalist
With the Civil War finally over, Durksen Hurst sets off for Turkle, Mississippi, hoping to reclaim his deserted plantation DarkHorse. With his fiancée Antoinette, the two surviving freedmen who fought beside him, and a Rebel orphan at his side, he slowly makes his way through a decimated South. What they find in Turkle isn’t a warm welcome . . .
The chains of slavery have been replaced by the chains of law. Black Codes are being strictly enforced. Any former slave is considered a vagrant unless they are under an annual labor contract. And Turkle has fallen under the harsh rule of plantation owner Colonel Rutherford, who wields gun clubs as weapons to terrorize Black folks.
As Durk and Antoinette struggle to protect themselves and their loved ones, Devereau French makes a daring escape from prison after two years of incarceration by the Union army. Still driven by the ghost of a strict, unloving mother, French sets out for Turkle, an all-consuming lust for vengeance against Durk and Antoinette far from slaked.
Surviving the war was hard enough, now Durk only hopes he can survive the peace . . .
“This is a character-driven novel, and their interactions are exceptional. In this entertaining read, the reader can feel the pain and share the grief of the characters. Tension builds until the final page.” —Historical Novel Society