Home Across the Road
By Nancy Peacock
(Bantam, Paperback, 9780553381023, 256pp.)
Publication Date: February 27, 2001
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With the simple, evocative grace of her nationally acclaimed debut novel, Life Without Water, Nancy Peacock has created a poignant story of two families -- one black, one white -- and the North Carolina house that binds their lives together for more than a hundred years.
In 1861, Roseberry was the plantation home of the white Redds; the black Redds were one of the slave families who worked there. In 1971, Roseberry stands empty, a wisteria vine growing through the dining room window, and China Redd, who worked in the house for half a century, is ready to die.
But first she has a story to tell. Not the one recorded by Lydia Redd, the matron of the house, in her own book, beginning with the earrings, the selling if Cleavis, and the curse, and ending with the death of Coyle, the last of the white Redds. If she has nothing else from the forty-seven years of work in a house where nothing was her own, she has this story.
Moving effortlessly back and forth in time through the parallel legends of the Redd families, Home Across the Road is a beautiful, haunting, and timeless drama that touches your heart and soul.