William H. Armstrong’s award winning novel Sounder is a haunting tale of injustice and poverty viewed through the eyes of a child. Set in the rural South of the late 19th century, it recounts the story of a poor sharecropper’s struggle to support his family. The sharecropper and his mixed breed coon hound Sounder, named for his baritone bellow, hunt for food every night; but Sounder’s silence signals there is no food to be found. One night, the sharecropper leaves Sounder home, and the next day the family wakes up to the smell of ham and biscuits. While relieved, the sharecropper’s son senses his parents’ anxiety. His mother hums nervously, and his father keeps looking out the window. Three days later, as the boy watches, the sheriff arrests the sharecropper, handcuffing him and throwing him on a wagon. Sounder chases the wagon and a deputy shoots him repeatedly. The traumatized boy finds part of Sounder’s ear, but he cannot find the dog. Loneliness descends on the house, as the boy begins a vigil for his father and his father’s loyal friend, wondering if the two will ever return home. Sounder is a moving tribute to the dignity and resiliency of man and beast, and the tight bond between them.