A fictional treatment of the story of the man at the heart of the Christiana Riot, a little noted but important precursor to the Civil War. Parker was born a slave, escaped while a teen, and settled in Pennsylvania. There he organized active resistance to the Fugitive Slave Act that ultimately led to an armed confrontation with a mob of slave owners, slave catchers, kidnappers, and lawmen; a slave owner was killed and his son wounded. Sticking close to facts, but with gripping and powerful novelistic touches, this is the kind of history lesson readers like best. Rosenburg, citing his sources only in the acknowledgements, is thoroughly researched, relying on Parker's autobiography, court transcripts, speeches, and newspapers of the time, and bolstering the story with background information on the Compromise of 1850, North-South politics, and the Fugitive Slave Act. Throughout, he maintains a narrative flow certain to keep pages turning.