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Deborah Johnson is the author of The Air Between Us, which received the Mississippi Library Association Award for Fiction. She lives in Columbus, Mississippi, and is working on her next novel.
Author photo © Birney Imes
This story is amazing as indeed is its lyrical writing. From the Southern American dialect to Mr Willie Willie’s made up words to wonderful descriptions of the country, forest and close-knit community full of secrets, this terrific tale is based on terrible facts. Just post-World War II the black American soldiers returned home to a land that still considered them less than human. This is the story of the ‘murder’ of one such, beaten to death. A year later a New York law firm, the first to investigate civil and human rights, gets a letter asking for help in acquiring justice and it sends a young female lawyer to Mississippi. With many layers, a story within a story, and a particularly powerful plot, this is a beautiful, thought-provoking gem with great depth. A must read.