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Arts & Culture

‘The Second Mrs. Hockaday’ Tells The Story Of Sacrifice, Bravery And Love During The Civil War

An image of the book cover 'The Second Mrs. Hockaday'
Algonquin Books
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In the summer of 2014, writer Susan Rivers was busy researching historical documents in her local library when she came across something interesting. It was an inquest from 1865 about a young woman who was accused of giving birth to a child and murdering the infant while her husband was away fighting for the Confederacy.

The story inspired Rivers to write her debut novel, “The Second Mrs. Hockaday” (Algonquin Books/2017). The book tells the story of PlacidiaHockaday, a teenage bride who is accused of the same crime but maintains a courageous silence throughout the accusations.
 

Host Frank Stasio talks with Rivers about shaping historical narratives into fiction and how Rivers’ work as an award-winning playwright helped her with the novel. Rivers reads tonight at 7 p.m. at Scuppernong Books in Greensboro, Friday at 5 p.m. at the Country Bookshop in Southern Pines and Saturday at 11 a.m. at McIntyre’s Books in Pittsboro.

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