Stories provide the connective tissue of the South. The intrepid Pamela Petro drives from the Carolinas to the Appalachians to the Atlantic seaboard, from Virginia's valleys to Louisiana's swamps to meet the mesmerizing guardians of its history: the storytellers, who often double as local, or national, treasures. A gifted listener, Petro records how stories originate as well as how they are passed down. She paints vivid portraits of the tellers while compiling tales about Jack the trickster, boo-hags and plat-eyes, ghosts, and singing turtles. The story of the South is not finished. Petro's revelatory investigation into its oral culture is as intoxicating as it is fun.