Cotton County, Georgia, 1930. Two babies-- one light-skinned, the other dark-- are born to Elma Jesup, a white sharecropper's daughter. Accused of her rape, field hand Genus Jackson is lynched and dragged behind a truck down the Twelve-Mile Straight, the road to the nearby town. Elma begins to raise her babies as best as she can, under the roof of her mercurial father, Juke, and with the help of Nan, the young black housekeeper. But the ties that bind all of them together are more intricate than any could have ever imagined, and a web of lies begins to collapse around the family. "Novel set in the south during the Great Depression that takes an entirely fresh view on big American themes-- race, heredity, inequality, shame-- set in a time of financial crisis and racialized violence"-- Provided by publisher.