Southern Scribe
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Inspirational Romance Review    

 

 

The Snowbirds
by Annie Jones
Multnomah Publishers, 2001
ISBN: 1-57673-623-7
 
 

 

Annie Jones has once again captured the idiosyncratic behavior in southern families and small towns with a good measure of grace.   Like the snowbirds that arrive each Christmas, the Dorsey sisters fly in from up north to celebrate Advent in their family home in Persuasion, Alabama.   

Nicolette Dorsey plans for this to be the last holiday in their home, since she needs the money from the sale of the sister’s home to put her daughter in a special boarding school.  Yet eight year-old Willa thrives in the large family home and the community of family and friends that love and protect her.   

Rev. Sam Moss is trying to bring new life to “the church in a lurch.”   As a local child who grew up in the cottages without a mother and an abusive father, young Sam sought the security of the church family.  However, an accident with marbles caused the young boy to be banned from services.  The adult Sam wants to make sure that the revived church is a sanctuary for all sinners.     

Nine years ago, Nicolette Dorsey and Sam Moss were young lovers, who planned to elope on New Year’s Eve, but Sam ran away in his knowledge that he could not provide for a wife.  Realizing that she had been abandoned, Nicolette drank herself into a stupor and awoke in bed with a strange man.   Gossip spread as Nicolette learned she was pregnant, then heartbreak when she learned the infant had suffered brain damage in birth.   

Rev. Sam Moss is renting the bottom floor bedroom in the Dorsey home from the sisters’ Aunt Bert when they arrive.  The antics in the home as family-less Sam is incorporated into the Dorsey madness.  The tender bonding and acceptance of Willa and Sam is endearing and foreshadows their true bond.  The problem remains getting Nicolette to realize what is best for the child and herself. 

As in any Jone’s novel, knee-slapping humor abounds.  Nicolette’s sister Petie is a drama queen who believes her husband has died from spoiled food while she is away, when in truth she fears he is having an affair.  A priceless moment is when the former cheerleader and football star are reunited.  Collier as the baby sister trying to prove herself against two strong A-type personalities in the family is touching.  The Duets, Aunt Bert, church family and town folk provide other moments of wisdom through laughter.   

However, the most touching lessons come from the simple and direct words of Willa.  In her innocent view of the snowbirds, baby Jesus, pig shakers and home, Willa directs the movement of the story to it’s faith reaffirming conclusion.  All God’s children are looking for a home. 

Be sure to pay attention to the lesson of faith and love in The Snowbirds, cause you only get two warnings before a “pew pinch.” 

 

Joyce Dixon
Southern Scribe Reviews

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