Picador USA, an imprint of St. Martin’s Press, 1999.
Copyright Stephen E. Miller

Hardback edition:
ISBN 0-312-19962-7
Cover by Henry Sene Yee

Paperback edition:
Cover by Henry Sene Yee

Eager to build a career in law enforcement, Korean War veteran Q.P. Waldeau becomes acting sheriff in the small costal community of Wilmington, North Carolina. But when the brutalized body of a black prostitute washes up on the bank of the Cape Fear – in the hung-over early hours of New Year’s Day 1954 – he confronts a professional and political dilemma with the potential to derail his ambitions.

As the simmering prejudices aroused by subsequent killings threaten to demolish the community’s fragile racial hierarchy, Waldeau must negotiate a dangerous course between his political instincts, his professional discipline, and his moral duty. When those same tensions explode in outright violence, he finds his career, and his life – and then the life of the woman he loves – in peril.

Set amid the darkness that heralded the dawn of the New South, The Woman in the Yard captures the atmosphere, the passion, and the paranoia that charged an era and changed a generation.

Praise For

“The Woman in the Yard is a stunning first novel – richly textured, historically valid, accented by eye-popping explosive scenes and brilliant insights. Stephen Miller has raised the southern cop genre to a new level.”
– Jack Olsen, bestselling author of Salt of the Earth and Hastened to the Grave

“The Woman in the Yard is an intriguing period piece police procedural that will gain much reader attention for author Stephen Miller…Mr. Miller has raised the quality level of the historical rural southern police procedural with this entertaining novel.”
– Midwest Book Review

“Miller moves his cast skilfully around a carefully nuanced stage…Things do not come out heroically, but believably…Miller hits all the marks just right ”
Tulsa World

“Miller ably portrays a South commencing the wrenching change from Jim Crow to Dr. King…A great yarn.”
– Ft. Pierce Tribune

“The Woman in the Yard is crammed full of atmosphere, well-chosen events and distinct and richly evoked characters…”
– The Globe and Mail

“Miller traverses familiar territory but he keeps the topic fresh with a smoothly-constructed narrative that is deceptively light, well-paced and thoroughly entertaining…”
– Donna Bailey Nurse, National Post

“Miller makes a welcome entrance to the field.”
– Publishers Weekly

“Mr. Miller has raised the quality level of the historical rural southern police procedural with this entertaining novel”
– The Midwest Book Review

“This first novel reflects the violent passions of its age….Powerfully told in vivid detail…compelling”
– The Dallas Morning News