Tell Me a Tale: A Novel of the Old South

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Lyford Books, 1996 - Fiction - 252 pages
1 Review
During the decade following the Civil War, the village of Red Springs has not changed very much. It is steeped in the socially rigid behavior of the old South, the white South. A young black man named Moses has traveled many long miles to reach McMillan's General Store. Here, sitting around the stove in their usual haunt, he finds the men he seeks. The young man enters the ill-kept emporium and finds the four old-timers gossiping and whittling. The very presence of a negro shocks them, but they don't recognize Moses as a former slave from a nearby plantation. Still bitter and angry over the emancipation of the area's slaves, these four very unreconstructed whites are in no mood to listen to anything a colored person has to say, let alone one whose motives they automatically, instinctively suspect. With the help of some fine cognac Moses has brought along for the occasion, he lightens the spirits of these mean old codgers with drink and the remarkable story he spins out over the next several hours. Moses tells them a tale of a young male slave, the boy's white father who keeps a painful distance from the son he refuses to acknowledge, the youth's wise "uncle" - a proud and complex man named Ben - and the fire that destroyed a great plantation. It is a story rich in love and hope, but ultimately poisoned by the ruinous deeds of hateful men.

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User Review  - glade1 - LibraryThing

This was an okay little book. I didn't expect it to be sweetness and light, and it wasn't. It is a tale of cruelty and revenge. Although it was pretty clear how the story would go from the beginning ... Read full review


User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A subtle and richly textured first novel by film and television actor McEachin. The setting is Red Springs, North Carolina, the period just postCivil War. Seventeen-year-old Moses, a former slave ... Read full review


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About the author (1996)

McEachin is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and is well known for his film roles and appearances in such T.V. shows as Perry Mason, Matlock, Rockford Files, Columbo, etc.

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