When Mockingbirds Sing

When Mockingbirds Sing

Author: Billy Coffey

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Release Date: June 2013

A suspenseful work that exposes the norms of small town Christianity. Can you believe in the Maybe?

After an unfortunate incident that almost cost Tom Norcross his therapist license, he moves his family away from the city out to the country life of Mattingly. Soon after their arrival, his daughter Leah begins to have conversations with a supposed imaginary friend she calls The Rainbow Man.  After receiving an easel for her birthday from Barney Moore, Leah paints him a picture that she says was sung to her by the Rainbow Man.  Her parents have never seen her paint like this before and wonder how it came to be.  Barney and his wife Mabel, who never recovered from a stroke, accept the painting and he sees some strange numbers that he uses to fall into a large fortune, which causes quite a stir around town.

The local preacher, Reggie Groggins, is stricken that his flow could be led so wayward by a little girl’s painting. As Leah keeps painting, the town looks to see if this painting is significant as well.  Reverend Groggins rouses the head Deacon and the Mayor to find a way to put an end to the painting.  After the expected result of the second painting fails, the town turns against the Norcross family.  Leah’s paintings begin to turn darker and the town tries to force them out, regardless of Leah’s warning of an impending disaster to the town and its residents.  In the end, is the Rainbow Man imaginary or is he something more spiritual?

I began this book with mixed expectations of what it would hold for me. It took a little bit to set up, but then it flew by.  Mr. Coffey has brought a story that looks into everyday aspects of Christianity that we face every day.   Whether you are the unbelieving father, the struggling preacher, or the grief stricken husband questioning Gods motives.  All of the characters came to life in a great way that made me feel like I was in the crowd as events were happening.

The story is a push and pull struggle of several main characters that are all interwoven together. The suspense of the story drew me in relatively quickly and I didn’t want to put it down once I was pulled in.  The end of the book was left open for a possible future story that I will be looking forward to reading.  This was the first book I have read by Billy Coffey, but it will not be the last.