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A Question of Mercy by Elizabeth Cox

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Elizabeth Cox is one of the most well established of our regional fiction writers. She grew up in Chattanooga, and her extensive and prestigious teaching career concluded at the edge of the South Carolina Blue Ridge. The action in this novel begins when, a mentally disabled youth, Adam Finney, is found dead in the French Broad River in North Carolina. "Cox provides a searing look at the painful, dehumanizing treatments forced on people with mental disabilities at the time [1950s] and the limited support their families had . . . Cox resists the easy ending and fills her novel with emotional and moral conundrums."―Kirkus Reviews. "A Question of Mercy presents an unflinching view of mental-health treatment in 1950's America, but in Jess, the novel's heroine, Elizabeth Cox has created a character whose courage and humanity remind us that there are always individuals who will fight injustice. This superb novel further confirms that Cox is one of our most profound and gifted novelists."―Ron Rash. "Elizabeth Cox writes straight from the gut with passion and compassion, but her characters are carefully wrought, and her artful structure creates gathering suspense until the very end. A Question of Mercy is Cox's finest novel yet, and one of the finest I have ever read. This beautiful novel rests in the heart long after the final page."―Lee Smith

Columbia, South Carolina: University of South Carolina Press, 2016. 224 pages with a foreword by Jill McCorkle. Hardback in dust jacket.