New Proofs

The Twelve-Mile Straight by Eleanor Henderson

July 16, 2017

Tender and savage, heart-breaking and hopeful, and deeply human, The Twelve Mile Straight will appeal to fans of American classics by Harper Lee, Toni Morrison and William Faulkner.

Cotton County, Georgia, 1930: in a house full of secrets, two babies – one light-skinned, the other dark – are born to Elma Jesup, a white sharecropper’s daughter. Accused of her rape, field hand Genus Jackson is lynched and dragged down the Twelve-Mile Straight, the road to the nearby town.

Despite the prying eyes and curious whispers of the townspeople, Elma begins to raise her babies as best as she can, under the roof of her impulsive father, Juke, and with the help of Nan, the young black housekeeper who is as close to Elma as a sister.

It soon becomes clear that the ties that bind all of them together are more intricate than any could have imagined. A web of lies begins to collapse around the family, destabilizing their precarious world and forcing all to reckon with the truth.


Published 11th January 2018 | Hardback | 9780008158682 | RRP £14.99

If you’re a bookseller in the UK or Ireland and you’d like an advance reading copy of The Twelve-Mile Straight, please send your request, along with your name and bookshop address, to Ammara at independentthinking@harpercollins.co.uk.

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