E Reid Gilbert Shall We Gather at the River

ISBN 13: 9781465348050

Shall We Gather at the River

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9781465348050: Shall We Gather at the River

This Romeo Juliet story set in the mountains of Virginia in the 1870s depicts a life and time largely forgotten now Jimmie Sue a white farm boy and Madeleen a colored sharecropper girl although mutually attracted to each other must deal with a greater obstacle than having different family names such as the Capulets and Montagues in Shakespeare Jimmie Sue was not so interested in a sheet of paper to certify their relationship but Madeleen would have no part of an arrangement that was not blessed of the Lord Their shared experiences in the fields the churches the baptism creek give them many contact opportunities which are duly celebrated yet constantly thwarted Although the focus is on these two teenagers the story gives some insight into the post civil war racial relationships in the mountains quite different from the more normally accepted tales of the plantations

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About the Author:

The author grew up in the hills of North Carolina, many years after these star-crossed lovers, farming (without power equipment) in the same manner described in their story. After leaving the farm he attended several colleges, earning five academic degrees (including a PhD in Asian Theatre) and pursued various careers (Methodist and Unitarian ministries, college professorship, theatre director and actor and professional mime). While on Fulbright assignments in India and Thailand he gained perspective on his own cultural roots and has written theatre scripts, poems and a previous book, Trickster Jack, Wheatmark Press, exploring those Appalachian mores and values.

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