When a teenage girl is the alleged victim of an act of racial violence, the incident shocks and galvanizes her community, exacerbating the racial tension that has been simmering in this New Jersey town for decades. In this magisterial work of fiction, Joyce Carol Oates explores the uneasy fault lines in a racially troubled society and reveals that there must always be a sacrifice of innocence, truth, trust, and, ultimately, of lives.
Unfolding in a succession of multiracial voices, in a community transfixed by this alleged crime and the spectacle unfolding around it, this profound novel exposes what and who the "e;sacrifice"e; actually is, and what consequences these kinds of events hold for us all. The Sacrifice is a chilling exploration of the enduring trauma of the past, modern racial and class tensions, the power of secrets, and the primal decisions we all make to protect those we love."e;