Rating - 5
The Civil War is just over. The slaves are free; the South vanquished. Sam, a runaway slave who escaped to the North years ago decides he must return to the South and find his wife, Tilda, whom he left behind. Tilda, sold to a harsh master who refuses to release his slaves, forces them to travel West with him where he doesn't have to follow federal law. Prudence, a wealthy abolitionist from Boston, decides to travel South to open a school to teach the newly freed slaves. Three journeys, unexpected outcomes, against almost insurmountable obstacles.
Pitts set his story in the South immediately after the Civil War. The newly freed slaves don't know what it means to be free and the Southerners can't recognize that they lost the war. I haven't read anything that takes place in this specific time period before. This is a compelling read, often difficult due to the cruelty of the times, but almost impossible to put down.