A gang of hooded outlaws, a year-long reign of terror, a legendary massacre -- the extraordinary events of the Mitcham Beat War are brought to life ... Show synopsis A gang of hooded outlaws, a year-long reign of terror, a legendary massacre -- the extraordinary events of the Mitcham Beat War are brought to life in this superb new novel from the Edgar Award-winning author of Poachers. In 1897, in a remote area of Alabama called Mitcham Beat, an aspiring politician is mysteriously murdered. His outraged supporters form the Hell at the Breech gang -- and wage a bloody campaign of retribution that sweeps up the guilty and the innocent alike. Caught in this maelstrom of vengeance are the county's ageing sheriff, the widowed midwife who delivered nearly every member of the gang, a ruthless detective waging a private war, and a young store clerk with a terrible secret. Soaked in the atmosphere of the Deep South, Tom Franklin weaves together historical fact, spare, poised prose and brutal, vivid action to tell a powerful story of ordinary people testing their capacity for good and evil in a harsh and lawless land -- in so doing writing a novel worthy of comparison to the works of William Faulkner, Flannery O'Connor and James Dickey.