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From The CriticsDurham's first novel, Gabriel's Story, is an original tale about a post-Civil War black cowboy. The author's disappointing follow-up, Walk Through Darkness, is a more conventional narrative about an escaped slave. In the story, a young mulatto named William leaves his plantation for Philadelphia in search of freedom and the woman who is pregnant with their child. He swims the Chesapeake, is betrayed by a black man, escapes from a slave-catcher in a violent uprising and is eventually recaptured. Durham alternates William's story with that of Morrison, a Scottish tracker who is hunting William. Consistent with the book's sentimental nineteenth-century ending is an archaic and formal style. Durham's novel refers to and parallels Frederick Douglass' autobiography but lacks its wit and uncompromising critique of white culture.