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Over the Plain Houses (Hardcover)
May 2016 Indie Next List
“Tense and atmospheric, this novel is set in Depression-era North Carolina but confronts a number of issues that are relevant today. I consider it one of the best historical fiction titles I've read lately --what must have been intensive research blends seamlessly with unforgettable characters and vibrant depictions of mountain caves, mining towns, and struggling farms. The book brilliantly takes readers back to a bygone era while subtly showing that it is an era whose darkness could soon fall again. Fans of Claire Fuller and Ron Rash won't want to miss it.”
— Elizabeth Weber (W), The Book Table, Oak Park, IL
It's 1939, and the federal government has sent Virginia Furman,a USDA agent, into the North Carolina mountains to instruct families how to modernize their homes and farms. There she meets farm wife Irene Lambey, who is immediately drawn to the lady agent's self-possession. Already, cracks are emerging in Irenie's fragile marriage to Brodis, an ex-logger turned fundamentalist preacher: she has taken to night ramblings through the woods to escape her husband's bed, storing strange keepsakes in a mountain crevice. To Brodis, these are all the signs that Irenietiptoeing through the dark in her billowing white nightshirthas become a witch.