The Cutting Season

The Cutting Season

By Attica Locke

Harper Perennial, Paperback, 9780061802065, 384pp.

Publication Date: September 2013


Caren Gray manages Louisiana's stately Belle Vie, an antebellum plantation-turned-tourist attraction where the past and the present coexist uneasily. Outside the gates, an ambitious corporation snaps up sugarcane fields from struggling families, replacing local employees with illegal laborers. Tensions mount when a female migrant worker is found in a shallow grave on the edge of the plantation property, her throat cut clean through.

As the sheriff's department zeroes in on a suspect, Caren suspects the police are chasing the wrong leads. Putting herself at risk, she unearths startling secrets about the long-ago disappearance of a former slave that has unsettling ties to the current murder secrets that a desperate killer will stop at nothing to keep buried.

Taut, hauntingly resonant, and beautifully written, The Cutting Season is a thoughtful meditation on how America reckons its past with its future.

About the Author
Attica Locke is the author of Black Water Rising, which was nominated for a 2010 Edgar Award, an NAACP Image Award, and a Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and was shortlisted for the UK's Orange Prize; and the national bestseller The Cutting Season, which won the 2013 Ernest Gaines Award for Literary Excellence. She is a coproducer and writer on the Fox drama Empire. A graduate of Northwestern University, she is on the board of directors for the Library Foundation of Los Angeles, where she lives.