Jerry Sanger, the son of a white ex-sharecropper, and Eloisa Jones, daughter of a black grocery store owner, suddenly find themselves caught in the middle of a racial battle. The discovery of their secret friendship and budding romance go against all things holy in Princeville, Mississippi.
Meanwhile, Sanger's friends in the Coahoma Street Gang find social issues of the times a challenge. As they wrestle with a small-minded class structure, Princeville must come to terms with incest, murder, and secret homosexuality. How everyone deals with these issues will, no doubt, surprise you.