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THE BLOCKBUSTER HIT–A New York Times, USA Today, Wall Street Journal, and Publishers Weekly Best Seller A “thought-provoking[ and] complicated story about two households, two centuries apart… based on a famous real-life controversy.” Memphis, 1939. Rill Foss, twelve, and her four older brothers are living a magical existence on board the Mississippi River shantyboat of their family. But one turbulent evening when their dad has to hurry their mom to the hospital, Rill is kept in control-until outsiders come into power. Wrapped from all that is familiar and thrown into an orphanage of the Tennessee Children’s Home Society, the children of Foss are assured that they will soon be returned to their parents-but they realize the dark truth quickly. Rill fights to keep her sisters and brother together in a world of danger and uncertainty at the mercy of the cruel director of the facility. 

Today, Aiken, South Carolina. Avery Stafford, born into wealth and privilege, seems to have it all: a successful career as a federal prosecutor, a beautiful fiancé, and a luxurious wedding on the horizon. But when Avery goes back to assist her dad weather a health crisis, an opportunity meeting puts her with unpleasant issues and forces her to follow a voyage through the long-hidden past of her family, on a route that eventually leads to either destruction or redemption. 

Based on one of America’s most known real-life controversies–in which Georgia Tann, ceo of an immigration organisation based in Memphis, abducted and marketed disadvantaged kids to rich households throughout the nation–Lisa Wingate’s riveting, twisting, and eventually uplifting story reminds us how, although the routes we follow can lead to many locations, the core never forgets where we live.