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Johnnie Roane returns from four years of military service in World War II to his wife, Glory. They had been married just a year when he left Lennox, Connecticut, where both their families live and work. In his taxi ride home, Johnnie receives foreboding hints that all has not been well in his absence. Eager to mend his fraying marriage, Johnnie attempts to cajole Glory to recommit to their life together. But something sinister has taken place during the intervening years—an infidelity that has not gone unnoticed in the superficially placid New England town.
Accompanied by a new foreword from Farah Jasmine Griffin on the enduring legacy of Petry’s oeuvre, Country Place complicates and builds on the legacy of a literary celebrity and one of the foremost African American writers of her time.
“Long out of print, this neglected tour-de-force is a startling departure from her acclaimed debut novel The Street (1946); with its reissue, I anticipate it finally garnering the wider readership it deserves.” –Keith Clark, George Mason University
“In this novel Ann Petry shows, through her compactness of style, increased fluidity of dialogue, and convincing character analysis, a marked advance over The Street.” —Margaret Just Wormley, Journal of Negro Education, 1948
“Gossip, malice, calculation, infidelity, adultery, attempted murder, sudden death, and a set of surprise bequests that more or less straighten things out—these are some of the dominant matters treated in Country Place. Yet this is, despite the violence of its events, a quiet book, carefully and economically phrased, and a good deal different from the author’s best-selling The Street.” —Richard Sullivan, New York Times, 1947