Size: 6.00 x 9.00 in
In 1834, fourteen-year-old Chance Early kills a man in self-defense and must leave his mountain home. He soon acquires both a slave named Lloyd and a mortal enemy named Radisson. His initial attempts to free Lloyd are unsuccessful, as Lloyd refuses to be manumitted in a slave state — but before they can leave town, Chance must fight a duel with Radisson. To make matters worse, he is being tracked by a brother of the man Chance killed.
Will Chance live to free Lloyd and redeem himself? And will he keep his sense of humor through it all?
It was mid-afternoon and the flock had been sold down to about one hundred and fifty birds. We had been up and down most of the streets at least twice. Half the houses in town had bought one and sales were beginning to fall off when a deputy showed up with a red-faced man wearing a bloody apron. “You boys licensed to sell them turkeys?” This from the deputy.
“Hell, these turkeys are selling themselves,” I said.
“Don’t be funning me, boys,” he said. “You got to take them birds outside the city limits.”
The man in the apron was snorting and fuming. “Arrest them, officer,” he said. “They’re costing me a fortune.” The deputy give him a baleful eye and he stood down.
“You wouldn’t be the grocer, would you?” I enquired.
“I am the proprietor of Sam’s Market,” he said, pulling himself to his full height, which was a good two inches less than mine.READ MORE
“Do you have a license to sell in the city limits?” I asked.
“I do,” he said.
“These birds have been going like hotcakes all day long at the prices you see on this sign,” I said. “How about you buy them from us and sell them yourself at a big markup?”
He tried to see the trap in that and couldn’t. “How much do you want?”
“A dollar seventy-five each, or we trot them just outside the city limits and sell them from there,” I said. “You can price them at two-fifty for the small ones and three-fifty for the big ones and make yourself more than a good profit.”
He said to the deputy, “Can they do that? Sell outside the city?”
“They can,” said the deputy. “No law against it.”
“Greenville being on the small side,” I said, “it’s not all that far to the city limits.”
“Not in any direction,” put in Tom.
Grocer Sam started to warm up to the idea. “A dollar and a quarter? Will you go one twenty-five?”
“We stand on one-fifty,” I said. “Firm, or we ruin your Thanksgiving trade.” Privately, I reckoned we had already ruined it. He was going to find it surprisingly hard to sell turkeys for Thanksgiving.
He didn’t want to pay that much, but I guess he thought he would turn his money over fast, because he did a quick count of the birds and made us wait with the deputy while he ran back to his store for the money. Folks who had been watching the entertainment knew the birds would soon be going at a dear price and we sold six at two dollars each while Grocer Sam was gone; the deputy didn’t object; in fact, he thought it was funny. We even gave him a bird for himself, as a courtesy.COLLAPSE
For New Years 2019, I vowed to spend less time on my iPhone/computer and more time reading, an activity that leaves me feeling grounded and whole. Dallas's book arrived during the rainy cold weekend before New Years Eve. I donned slippers and robe, build a fire in the wood stove and curled up in a comfortable chair, certain I was in for a treat. I was not disappointed. The style and characters of the book remind me of the best of Mark Twain -- engaging and full of people to love. It's a view into another time, another place, unfamiliar -- yet I felt at home. A very good read. You are sure to enjoy.
Paperback - $16.99