This image is the cover for the book House Behind the Cedars

House Behind the Cedars

The classic novel of two mixed-race siblings who flee the South after the Civil War, hiding their identities—until a romance brings the truth to light.

A landmark in African American literature, The House Behind the Cedars tells the tale of Rena Walden, who runs away from North Carolina to start a new life with her brother. Their mixed ancestry allows them to “pass” as white—and they settle into life in Clarence, South Carolina, keeping their past a secret.

But Rena eventually becomes romantically involved with a white man from a prominent and wealthy family—and their lives are turned upside-down when her true heritage is revealed.

“A story of sustained strength and interest, wrought out to an artistic finale.” —Detroit Free Press

Charles W. Chesnutt

Charles W. Chesnutt was an African American author, essayist, political activist, and lawyer, best known for his novels and short stories that explore racial and social identity in the post–Civil War South.

Open Road Media