SINCE ATLANTA, SHE had looked out the dining-car window with a delight almost physical. Over her breakfast coffee, she watched the last of Georgia’s hills recede and the red earth appear, and with it tin-roofed houses set in the middle of swept yards, and in the yards the inevitable...

She looked up the track toward the station and saw a tall man standing on the tiny platform. He jumped down and ran to meet her. He grabbed her in a bear hug, put her from him, kissed her hard on the mouth, then kissed her gently. “Not here, Hank,” she murmured, much pleased. “Hush,...

ATTICUS FINCH SHOT his left cuff, then cautiously pushed it back. One-forty. On some days he wore two watches: he wore two this day, an ancient watch and chain his children had cut their teeth on, and a wristwatch. The former was habit, the latter was used to tell time when he could...

THERE WAS NO doubt about it: Alexandra Finch Hancock was imposing from any angle; her behind was no less uncompromising than her front. Jean Louise had often wondered, but never asked, where she got her corsets. They drew up her bosom to giddy heights, pinched in her waist, flared...

Jean Louise had lost touch with nearly everyone she grew up with and did not wish particularly to rediscover the companions of her adolescence. Her schooldays were her most miserable days, she was unsentimental to the point of callousness about the women’s college she had attended,...