Common Threads by Larry Auerbach

The town of Pinetar, Alabama was almost ruined and burned out of existence during a protracted siege during the War Between The States. Twelve years later, it is still just barely hanging on, but good times may be coming. A large financial investment is coming to Pinetar, to help newly enfranchised former slaves, and former Rebels build new lives in what is now their war ravaged home, if they can all learn to work together. The government is also sending a teacher to start a school to help them all learn to read, write, and do their sums. The own desperately needs this financial assistance, as there is no industry and no work for anyone, and the dreaded carpet-baggers are coming to town.

The new Klu Klux Klan has become a force in the south and is threatening the stability of the community by using threats, intimidation and terrorism to drive the new citizens out of the area. A U S Marshal is ordered to take a team to the town and drive the Klan out of the area and protect the financial rebirth of the community, all but wiped out by the devastation of the war only the South wanted and only the North could hope to win.

Pinetar has its own secrets, however. Twenty years ago a black man was murdered to hide a scandal that would have ruined a very important man. Some people in Pinetar are seeking to rebuild their fortunes, while some are seeking to return to the old lost order. Others are coming to Pinetar for a variety of reasons. One is seeking redemption for a ruined military career, while another is coming to make an un-scheduled withdrawal from the bank. One man is coming to seek revenge for an old injury, and another will clear his conscience. The connection between all of these issues, and the key to the resolution of that twenty year old murder mystery is on the way. All of these people will meet in Pinetar and they will discover they all share COMMON THREADS.

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