As Nettie writes to her friend Addie about her trip from Albany, New York, to Richmond, Virginia, she remembers all the things she saw and heard in that pre-Civil War South. She remembers the sweet cedar smell in the air -- but she also remembers Tabitha, the black slave in her hotel who has no last name. She remembers seeing the slave quarters at a nearby plantation, with the heaps of rags in the corners for beds. But most of all she remembers the slave auction, where a woman is sold "like a sack of flour"; and she thinks about what their lives would be like, if she and Addie were slaves... Based on the real diary of the author's great-grandmother, this is a powerful and deeply moving account of one girl's reaction to slavery in the South. Once read and seen through the eyes of master illustrator Ronald Himler, it is not soon forgotten.
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Ann Turner is an award-winning screenwriter and director, avid reader, and history lover. She is drawn to salt-sprayed coasts, luminous landscapes, and the people who inhabit them all over the world. She is a passionate gardener. Her films include the historical feature Celia, starring Rebecca Smart—which Time Out listed as one of the fifty greatest directorial debuts of all time; Hammers Over the Anvil, starring Russell Crowe and Charlotte Rampling; and the psychological thriller Irresistible starring Susan Sarandon, Sam Neill, and Emily Blunt. Ann has lectured in film at the Victorian College of the Arts. Returning to her first love, the written word, in her debut novel The Lost Swimmer, Ann explores themes of love, trust, and the dark side of relationships. Her second novel, Out of the Ice, a mystery thriller set in Antarctica, was published to great acclaim in Australia and will be available in the United States in 2018. Ann was born in Adelaide and lives in Victoria. Visit Ann’s website at AnnTurnerAuthor.com.
Ron Himler lives in Tucson, Arizona. An interest in American Indian culture first brought Mr. Himler to the southwest, and his work often features western subjects as well as historical themes. His paintings are frequently exhibited in galleries in the southwest. Ron Himler has illustrated more than seventy-five children’s books.
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (March 31, 1987)