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Extended Audio Sample The Twelve-Mile Straight Audiobook, by Eleanor Henderson Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Eleanor Henderson Narrator: Allyson Johnson Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2017 ISBN: 9780062694874
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From New York Times bestselling author Eleanor Henderson, an audacious American epic set in rural Georgia during the years of the Depression and Prohibition

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 behind a truck down the Twelve-Mile Straight, the road to the nearby town. In the aftermath, the farm’s inhabitants are forced to contend with their complicity in a series of events that left a man dead and a family irrevocably fractured.

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 mercurial father, Juke, and with the help of Nan, the young black housekeeper who is as close to Elma as a sister. But soon it becomes clear that the ties that bind all of them together are more intricate than any could have ever imagined. As startling revelations mount, a web of lies begins to collapse around the family, destabilizing their precarious world and forcing all to reckon with the painful truth.

Acclaimed author Eleanor Henderson has returned with a novel that combines the intimacy of a family drama with the staggering presence of a great Southern saga. Tackling themes of racialized violence, social division, and financial crisis, The Twelve-Mile Straight is a startlingly timely, emotionally resonant, and magnificent tour de force.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Narrator Allyson Johnson weaves a Southern gothic tale that wraps around the listener like a coiling snake…Johnson’s delivery infuses the story with verve. She can voice a lisping preacher, a crying drunk, and a righteous teetotaler. She glides over a testy honeymoon and is tender in describing a sisterly relationship. Throughout, she makes class and race divisions palpable…Henderson’s prose and Johnson’s voice make this production a must-listen.”

    AudioFile

  • “[A] superb novel whose roots can be traced to Harper Lee and Carson McCullers.”

    O, The Oprah Magazine

  • “Beautifully told, beautifully written, a story that penetrates to the American heart and all the light and darkness therein.”

    Philadelphia Inquirer

  • “An absorbing epic of poor Georgia farm people and other folks they encounter in dicey, hardscrabble times…[in] elegant yet swift and crafty storytelling.”

    Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  • “Henderson’s highly recommended title delivers a powerful tale of social complexity told in radiant and precise prose.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “The richly detailed landscape of the volatile mill town where the novel is set immerses the reader in an unsentimental version of the South under economic and social pressure.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Totally immersing, provocative…The world of Twelve Mile Straight…will continue to haunt readers long after they finish the final page.”

    Booklist

  • “Readers who like a challenge will relish this gifted writer’s ambition and grit.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • An Entertainment Weekly “Must Read” for Fall
  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month for September
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About the Author
Author Eleanor Henderson

Eleanor Henderson is the author of Ten Thousand Saints, named one of the 10 Best Books of 2011 by the New York Times and a finalist for the Award for First Fiction from the Los Angeles Times and was adapted into a film in 2015. She earned an MFA degree from the University of Virginia in 2005.

About the Narrator

Allyson Johnson is an actress and singer who began performing in her hometown of Chicago at age twelve as coanchor of Bubble Gum Digest, a weekly children’s television news program, for which she won an Emmy. After earning a degree in psychology from Brown University, she moved to New York where she became a social worker before shifting to a career in television and radio. As a professional voice-over actress for more than twelve years, Johnson has recorded countless commercials, promos, audiobooks, narrations, and animation series.