underground-railroadBeautiful writing. A heroine worth knowing. Whitehead turns the historical Underground Railroad, a network of people (mostly white) willing to take risks to help runaway slaves, into a literal railroad, running beneath the eastern United States. Cora runs away from the plantation in Georgia where she was born, enslaved and brutalized, embarking on a journey on the railroad. At each stage of her journey, Whitehead examines the nature of freedom and bondage, the effects of slavery on white and black alike, the possibilities of historic roads not taken. While the story is compelling and moves right along, the questions it raises stay with the reader.