Kenneth H. Hall tells the story of the young Miriam Crane, a wife and mother in the small, insular community called “Capernum” by her neighbors, which was originally carved from Maryland plantations by freed slaves at the end of the Civil War. The tides and currents of great social changes and upheavals in the wider world had not only touched, but swept away Capernum’s sister town of Union, scattering its inhabitants and leaving behind only a stone church and a fading graveyard. Capernum itself is slowly but inexorably fading away as its young people seek a better life in nearby cities and beyond.
But when an itinerant preacher and a handful of his followers bring new hopes and dreams to Capernum, his influence threatens to divide Miriam’s neighbors – and her own family. Her choices, and her fierce devotion to home and the land of her ancestors, lead to a shocking crime, echoing those in the greater world, and to secrets long kept.
Now, with her daughter a grown woman, the time has come to re-live those days and to disclose the truth, wherever it may lead.
Available on Amazon
“A timeless story of family life and the forces that can disrupt it”
Five Star Review on Amazon By Veneta Masson
I don’t ordinarily read electronic books but this one came recommended and turned out to be a page-turner. I’ve often driven through rural Maryland and wondered about the culture and history of its small farms with their barns, (some deserted, others carefully maintained) and open fields. This historical novel answered some of my questions. Capernum is a fictional African-American farming community, slowly losing its people to larger towns and cities. The story, set in the 1970s and narrated by the farm wife, is centered on one family and an itinerant band of evangelists who meet at Cole’s Creek, on their property, for yearly revivals. The plot unfolds slowly but absorbed me totally. There is a crime embedded in it but there is also an abundance of detail about daily life and the values and aspirations that motivate the characters. Readers will be intrigued by the Afterword which sheds light on the metaphor of Saul and Miriam, the farmers; Miriam’s mother; Isaac, the preacher; and Rail, a tortured soul who wants to join the preacher’s inner circle. Great read!
About the Author
Kenneth H. Hall lives with his family in Montgomery County, Maryland, and writes both poetry and fiction. He holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in Philosophy from the University of Maryland, and a J.D. from the Yale Law School.
Cole’s Creek is his first novel.
You can reach Ken by sending an e-mail to KHHall1000@gmail.com.
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