NC Literary Hall of Fame












The Road to Goshen Shoals by Paul W. Valentine

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
$14.99, paperback / $3.99, e-book
ISBN: 978-1-482591446
October, 2013
Available at

The year: 1970. Rural North Carolina. At his dying mother's request, Arlis Morrow, a white newspaper reporter, returns to his small, isolated hometown to seek a black man he had known thirty years earlier as a five-year-old playmate and not seen since. With his mother's motivation strangely veiled, Arlis begins seeking clues to the man's whereabouts, encountering subtle resistance from both black and white townspeople—a courtly undertaker, a glad-handing politician, a secretively obsessed Pentecostalist, a sheriff with a shrouded past. Despite their resistance, Arlis gradually unearths truths, mixed with ancient racial ambiguities, that lead him to disturbing discoveries about his family and his old friend and propel him into a final tragic confrontation.

The Road to Goshen Shoals is more than a tale of quest and confrontation. It is a series of conversations about the powerful and sometimes equivocal impact of the civil rights movement in the South—conversations between and among the region's most important constituents, its ordinary (and sometimes extraordinary) people.

Paul W. Valentine was born and raised in North Carolina and is a retired reporter for The Washington Post where he covered police, courts, prisons, law enforcement policy, and extremist politics. He is the author of two other novels, Crisscross and Dark Epiphany (also titled Crime Scene at "O" Street in its original hardback edition). He lives with his wife, Elizabeth, in Baltimore, Maryland, where he plays the autoharp and enjoys his grandchildren.

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