Janette tugged the handle. "This gate's locked. I can't get out." The radio made no reply, and she let it fall to the ground, taking hold of the fence, pulling herself up. Her boots scraped uselessly against the metal, too large to find a foothold, and she gave a high cry of frustration as she dropped like a supplicant to her knees, fingers meshed with the unyielding wire. She caught her breath and looked back at the factory, watching the roiling smoke, black against the fire, blacker than the black sky. A chemical scent laced the air now, stinging her eyes, burning her throat. She fumbled for the radio. "Marty, this smoke is poisonous. I can't . . . Tell . . . Oh, God, I don't know . . . Tell . . ."
In a room across town Martin Jessup laid the silent radio on his desk and looked at it. Out the window he could see a garish glow, a lewd carnival......
Excerpt from In the Shadow of the Law by Kermit Roosevelt. Copyright © 2005 by Kermit Roosevelt. Published in June, 2005 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, LLC. All rights reserved.
Blood at the Root
"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
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