New line for John Weld, as he portrays with validity and sympathy a Carolina farm in the early 1800's -- and the abrasive question of whites and blacks. The farmer is soft-hearted by the standards of the times; he has a thin-lipped, practical, unsentimental wife, and a mean, hard overseer, Tate. Trouble starts with the purchase of a new Negro, Quash, and Montgomery refuses to get rid of him when he falls in love with the prettiest of the Negro girls. Tate uses Quash as a means to get Chloe to sleep with him -- and there's more trouble. When Quash runs off to the swamp to avoid the lash, suspicion lights on him for the murder of a white child, and he is forced to return to clear himself. Well done, but not an easy story to place.