Because It Is Bitter, And Because It Is My Heart by Joyce Carol Oates

The novel delves into the complexities of race, family, and morality in a small town in upstate New York during the 1950s and 1960s. It follows the intertwined lives of a white girl from a dysfunctional family and an African American boy from a stable, loving home who become bound together by a violent act that shapes their future. As they grow up, each struggles with the weight of the secret they share and the racial tensions of their community, while trying to find their own paths to redemption and understanding amidst the societal pressures and personal hardships they face.

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