The Devil Amongst the Lawyers by Sharyn McCrumb
In 1935, a beautiful young schoolteacher is accused of murdering her coal-miner father in
a Virginia mountain community. National journalists descend on Wise County, intent upon exonerating the defendant, and on stereotyping the mountain community to satisfy their Depression-era readers. But local cub reporter Carl Jennings writes what he sees: an ordinary town and a defendant who is probably guilty. The novel resonates with the present: an economic depression; a deadly Japanese earthquake; the rise of political fanatics; and a media culture turning news stories into soap operas for the diversion of the masses. A literary tour de force, The Devil Amongst the Lawyers continues the Ballard saga by examining social issues that go well beyond the fate of one defendant. It is a testament to Sharyn McCrumb's lyrical and poetic writing about the mountain South.
New York: St. Martin's, 2010