In The Road to Memphis, author Mildred D. Taylor presents numerous friendships between African American and Euro-American characters. By detailing the friendship of Jeremy, who is white, with members of the Logan family, who are Black, Taylor shows the complex effects of interracial relationships. Jeremy not only sides with the Logans but also helps their friend Moe Turner. As Jeremy struggles to reject the racism of his family and upbringing, he jeopardizes his own safety. He is well aware that he risks alienation from his family—which does actually occur—but is also convinced that he must stay true to his own beliefs. As he must ultimately flee, his decision to aid Moe’s escape also separates him from Cassie and other friends.
The Road to Memphis picks up with the actions of characters that Taylor had developed in earlier works, and Jeremy’s friendship with the Logan children had already been established. Now that they are adolescents and young adults, their actions have much weightier consequences. Jeremy understands that Moe is facing severe retribution: vigilantes are likely to kill him, not seek justice in the legal system. Jeremy’s actions are partly motivated by the personal aspects of his friendship with the Logans, and this emotional connection in turn undergirds his defense of justice for all African Americans.