Paulette Jiles, 2002
The Civil War Era was one of the most divisive and heart-rending in our nation's history. For 18-year-old Adair Colley it brought about intense personal change as well.
Although the Colley family was neutral on the issues of secession and slavery, many men from their area in Missouri Ozarks had joined the Confederate army.
One day in November 1864 the Union Militia swept in on their mission to rout Confederate sympathizers. They set the Colley homestead on fire, and arrested Adair's father, a mild-mannered justice of the peace.
Adair and her two younger sisters gathered together what they could and set off to find shelter. Along the way, however, Adair herself is arrested on charges of "enemy collaboration" and sent to a women's prison in St. Louis.
There she meets a Union major, William Neumann, who is to be her interrogator, and the two fall in love. Before he is sent back to the front, Neumann helps Adair plan an escape and, not long after he leaves, she makes her break. Weakened and alone, Adair must now travel through dangerous territory as she makes her way home—not knowing who or what she will find there. (From the publisher.)
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