In an American story of enduring importance, Jimmy Carter re-creates his Depression-era boyhood on a Georgia farm, before the civil rights movement that changed it and the country. In what is sure to become a classic, Carter writes about the powerful rhythms of countryside and community. Along the way, he offers an unforgettable portrait of his father, a brilliant farmer and strict segregationist who treated black workers with his own brand of "separate" respect and fairness, and his strong-willed mother, a nurse who cared for all in need -- regardless of their position in the community. Carter describes the people who shaped his early life, only two of them white: his eccentric relatives who sometimes caused the boy to examine his heritage with dismay; the boyhood friends with whom he hunted and worked the farm, but who could not attend the same school; and the eminent black bishop who refused to come to the Carters' back door but who would stand in the front yard discussing crops and politics with Jimmy's father. Carter's clean and eloquent prose evokes a time when the cycles of life were predictable and simple and the rules were heartbreaking and complex. In his singular voice and with a novelist's gift for detail, Jimmy Carter creates a sensitive portrait of an era that shaped the nation. An Hour Before Daylight is destined to stand with other timeless works of American literature.