Streets of Fire by Thomas H. Cook

By Thomas H. Cook

On the top of the Civil Rights circulation, a tender girl’s homicide stirs racialtensions in Birmingham, Alabama

The grave at the soccer box is shallow, and straightforward to identify from a distance. it is going to were came upon faster, had many of the citizens within the black half Birmingham no longer been downtown, marching, making a song, and being arrested along Martin Luther King, Jr. Police detective Ben Wellman is between them whilst he will get the decision concerning the clean grave. below the loosely packed dust, he unearths a tender black lady, her innocence taken and her existence in addition to it.

His sergeant orders Wellman to enquire, yet instructs him to not test too difficult. in the summertime of 1963, Birmingham is demanding adequate with out a manhunt for the killers of a black baby. Wellman digs for the reality despite skepticism from the black neighborhood and scorn from his fellow officials. What he reveals is a mystery that males from either side of city would favor stayed buried.

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With one arm she squeezed Scarlett tighter. The other came around front and produced a gnarled and swollen finger that gathered the blood from her own lip like a dark harvest. Alvaretta reached out and touched Scarlett’s forehead, then made a straight line of crimson down the bridge of Scarlett’s nose. “Yesss,” she whispered. ” Scarlett cried out. indd 46 5/8/15 1:29 PM the curse of crow hollow • 47 grasp and took off, they all took off, not minding the crows watching them from their nooses nor the dogs chasing them nor the long hill to the top of the ridge, minding only the raging wail of what the witch had been hiding and the witch herself screaming Curse ye over and over, Curse ye all for ye sins.

Her shoe landed on one of the footprints they’d followed from the mines. She cried out as though she’d stepped barefoot on a thistle. Alvaretta smiled as she turned, looking at Scarlett for the first time. “I see the face behind your eyes, little one,” she said. ” Scarlett held her place. ” And then the witch licked her lips with a tongue that looked gray and dying, like she was savoring the bitterness in her next word. ” Scarlett’s face went slack. ” That cackle again, low and soft, which only made the blood in Cordelia’s face drain quicker.

Raleigh Jennings was no different. His place was to ring the bell and then sit on the metal chair in the foyer until it was time for the plates to be passed. And that was fine with Raleigh, because that’s about as close to the Lord as he could bear to get. Fifty-seven years old, gray and balding. Gut out to here, friend, and I ain’t kidding. indd 55 5/8/15 1:29 PM 56 • b i l l y c o f f e y constant reminder of his own mortality. Divorced near twenty years, his ex-wife, Eugenia, had fled to her hundred-dollar-anhour therapist up in Stanley.

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