Sharyn McCrumb is one of the very most popular contemporary Appalachian authors. A great strength of her career is that she discovers fascinating and nuanced regional events and finds ways to illuminate them by creating compelling characters central to those events. Her cleverness extends into her plot details and her dialogue. The event this novel centers around the 1935 trail of Edith Maxwell in Wise County, Virginia, for killing her abusive father. The case was sensationalized by the Hearst newspapers. In 2005 Sharon Hatfield, a native of Wise County, published a non-fiction account of the case: Never Seen the Moon: The Trials of Edith Maxwell. Sharyn McCrumb tells this story through the eyes of a young local reporter, Carl Jennings.
New York: St. Martin's, 2010. hardback in dust jacket.