Books: Fiction

The Return of Gabriel

Book – Fiction. By John Armistead. 2002. 218 pages. Confronted with decisions well beyond their years, three friends grapple with eternal issues of shifting loyalties and the nature of heroism
Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974
Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship

The summer of 1964 begins calmly enough. Cooper Grant, Jubal Harris, and Squirrel Kogan form a secret society called the Scorpions, hoping to event he score with the local bully, Reno McCarthy. But when civil rights workers come to their small Mississippi town and the Ku Klux Klan responds with intimidation and terrorism, the sultry days and nights are transformed into Freedom Summer.

As events unfold, the town begins to crackle with tension. A cross-burning on the lawn of Squirrel’s house scares his family out of town. Mr. Grant insists on Cooper attending KKK meetings with him. And at the Oak Grove Baptist Church, where Jubal and Cooper are members, Reverand Graham begins to issue warnings—premonitions of Klan attacks he says have come from the “angel Gabriel.” But then Gabriel mysteriously disappears.

Filled with suspense, The Return of Gabriel takes readers deep into a not-so-distant era. Confronted with decisions well beyond their years, the friends grapple with eternal issues of shifting loyalties and the nature of heroism. [Publisher’s description]

ISBN: 9780756934606 | Published by Perfection Learning