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Welcome to Grassy Creek, North Carolina. The year is 1919 and a pandemic is sweeping through this small Appalachian farming town. Doc Waddell rides horseback from sickbed to sickbed while the townspeople crowd into church for a revival. Dread Cox seeks the aid of a midwife because he "cain't afford a real doctor". Crystal befriends Georgia, a "colored" girl, despite the prejudices of her dad. The deputy sheriff makes a prisoner give his word that he won't run off, and Florence Porter refuses to let her eleven-year-old deceased daughter be buried.
While often "stranger than fiction", these are the true accounts of the author's grandparents who abided by the eighth commandment; "You shall not steal, nor deal falsely, nor lie to one another", as well as the other nine.