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The Tannery

The Tannery

“Far more than a legal thriller, though it is that . . . Some of this tale will sound disturbingly familiar to readers in the 21st Century, all the more reason to consider its lessons. History can come alive in a work of great fiction. This is one of those times.” -Frye Gaillard, Civil Rights Historian, Author of A Hard Rain: America in the 1960s

 

July 5, 1900, Wilkes County, North Carolina: The beautiful young daughter of tannery owner Jakob Schumann is found dead on the north bank of the Yadkin River, brutally beaten, a skinning knife in her chest.

Who killed Rachel Schumann? And why? Ambitious Wilkes prosecutor Vincent Taliaferro has arrested Virgil Wade, a mixed-race boy, and is convinced the case is open and shut. But local lawyer Ben Waterman is not so sure. Ben’s investigation uncovers evidence that undermines the prosecutor’s case and points in an entirely different direction. But can he prove it? Can he convince an all-White, all-male jury of Virgil’s innocence?

The Tannery transports readers to the turbulent world of the post-Reconstruction South. Reflecting issues prominent in today’s headlines, themes of Black voter suppression and intimidation, the violence and depravity of vigilante “justice,” and the rise of Jim Crow drive the narrative to its dramatic and surprising conclusion.

 

Pages: 338
Pub Date: 10-19-2021
Softcover: 19.95 9781646634873

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Michael A. Almond, a retired attorney, was raised in the small town of Pilot Mountain in the Piedmont foothills of North Carolina. He received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and was a Fulbright Scholar in political science at the University of Mannheim, Germany. During his years as an international business lawyer, he was awarded the prestigious Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany for "outstanding commitment in fostering relations between the United States and the Federal Republic of Germany." An avid reader and student of Southern history and literature, he currently lives on a farm with his wife, Helen Ruth, in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. The Tannery is his debut novel. www.michaelalmondbooks.com

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