Reader reviews and comments on The Twelve-Mile Straight, plus links to write your own review.

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The Twelve-Mile Straight

A Novel

by Eleanor Henderson

The Twelve-Mile Straight by Eleanor Henderson X
The Twelve-Mile Straight by Eleanor Henderson
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  • First Published:
    Sep 2017, 560 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 18, 2018, 560 pages

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There are currently 26 reader reviews for The Twelve-Mile Straight
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Rosemary K. (Saginaw, MI)

Read till the end of the road!
The Twelve-Mile Straight is a stunning book; brilliantly written, and full of inspired plot lines.

I was hooked from the first words. There was a brief period, though, when I was confused. I needed to re-read several pages, but they did not enlighten me. I finally decided to keep on; eventually, I made my way into the clearing.

I was impressed by all the issues covered by the author (race, male domination, small-town views); I was pleased with the time she took to develop her inimitable characters. The book is a page turner! Except for that time of uncertainty early on, I read eagerly, thoroughly enraptured.

I most highly recommend this wondrous book; I also plan to read the author's earlier work. So far, this is my choice for best book of 2017! Several of my more valued friends will be receiving this from me at Christmas.
Joanne V. (Towanda, PA)

An excellent read, but difficult at first
I really loved this book once I got into it. The characters, plot, and especially the writing are excellent. Interestingly the author lives nearby in a town where I lived some years ago. I would definitely recommend this to my book group as I think there are so many things that merit discussion. The fact that the author lives so close would be interesting as well.
Barbara P. (Hixson, TN)

Outstanding writing, excellent story
It has been a long time since I've read such a gripping story. It takes place in a small southern Georgia county in the 1930's. The story tells of two young girls; one white and one black and how they grow up together. Race relations is a large part of the story and bootlegging, as well. The character development is so real that you feel you are there growing up with them through all of their trials and tribulations. Sometimes it is difficult to read because of the horror of some of the things that happen. I would highly recommend this book to all that are fans of historical fiction
Carol N. (Indian Springs Village, AL)

The Twelve-Mile Straight
This book is not an easy read, but that is one of the reasons I like it so much. It made me think, cry, feel shame and feel hope for Elma and Nan. The subject matter is difficult at times but Ms. Henderson handles it with a sure hand and does not sensationalize her story with cheap language and terms. This would be a wonderful book club book with all of the strong characters but it is a long book and might be better for those clubs that meet every 2-3 months. At times I felt like the human race is just too brutal as a whole, but then something would happen to give me hope again for the goodness of men to overcome all of the evil.
Mary Lou C. (Shenadoah Junction, WV)

Thought Provoking- Twelve Mile Straight
This book is well written and the characters very well developed. It was a little hard to follow at first, but it didn't take long to become fully immersed in the story.

The author captures the essence of life in the south during the Great Depression. It follows the lives of two girls, one black and one white, growing up together on a sharecroppers farm in Georgia, and sharing their lives and darkest secrets. The brutality and severity of their lives is difficult to fathom, although not hard to believe.

This is an outstanding read and one that continues to provoke thought and regret that humans can treat other humans so badly. Yet, through all this, there is a hopeful message that justice and morality can prevail.
Mary Jane D. (Arlington Heights, IL)

Great read
I loved The Twelve- Mile Straight and would highly recommend it. The writing is excellent, character development is full, and the plot is intriguing. It is rather long but I found myself constantly picking it up to find out what happened next. When I thought I had it figured out a new detail would be revealed that surprised me. I thought the references to FDR and Jimmy Carter were interesting too. It would make an excellent Book Club choice for discussion but enough time would have to be allowed to finish it because of its length.
Power Reviewer
Barbara O. (Maryland Heights, MO)

Rural Southern America, A Dark Tale
Eleanor Henderson has written a wonderful book filled with larger than life characters that intrigue you with their behaviors. The Twelve Mile Straight is a period piece set in Depression era rural Georgia. The story has it all, rape, lynchings, social hierarchy, sinners and saints. The author strips away the wholesome facade and gives us a story about real people, neither all bad nor all good. Book club members will find lots to discuss starting with the individual characters depicted in the book. Still can't decide my favorite.
Monica P. (Cleves, OH)

A future classic
I can't say I necessarily enjoyed this rather sad story, but the writing was superb. This would make a great bookclub read. The characters were well developed and their intertwining connections kept me interested to see what happened next. I would definitely recommend this one.

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Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Twelve-Mile Straight by Eleanor Henderson

An audacious American epic set in rural Georgia during the years of the Depression and Prohibition.

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