"We can't let our fears or things we don't understand weigh us so far down that they keep us from picking up and going forward. We're still here on this earth for a reason. . . . . . What are you here to do? I reckon that's the point to figure."
Lilliana Grace Swope had been cowering in fear her entire married life .. . . . . actually, trepidation served as her constant companion long before she'd been married off to Gerald . . . her father, while conveniently hiding behind his esteemed status as an elder in their local church, had been an authoritarian brute. So Lilliana learned at an early age to keep her head down, avoid being noticed at all costs, and to forget any notion that was actually her own if she thought to survive. Life came crashing down hard upon her already broken spirit following the death of her beloved mother. To make matters worse, while hunkering down on a church pew Lilliana overheard a conspiring conversation, and knew right away that she only had one option. Flee.
This story provides readers with a glorious escape into the resplendent hills of North Carolina where the night birds sing and wildflowers grow in abundance; mesmerizing at best and merciless at worst; an intersection of cultures where time seems to stand still until you wished it didn't. Filled with lovable and colorful characters, "Night Bird Calling" also manages to pull back the curtain on the painful transition between enslaved and free, and the courage of the people who fought, often at a great cost to themselves and their families, to overcome fear and misunderstanding, intervening when the stakes were at their highest. Apparently, in retrospect, the main character in this story, playing the dual roles of hero and villain, is the town of No Creek itself. In the words of young Celia, indisputably the most garrulous character in the book, "Wishing comes easy. Change don't".
Isn't that the truth.
*I purchased this book and was under no obligation to provide a review. 4.5 stars
Slowly Lilliana finds revival and friendship in No Creek—with precocious eleven-year-old Celia Percy, with kindhearted Reverend Jesse Willard, and with Ruby Lynne Wishon, a young woman whose secrets could destroy both them and the town. When the plans for the library also incite the wrath of the Klan, the dangers of Lilliana’s past and present threaten to topple her before she’s learned to stand.
With war brewing for the nation and for her newfound community, Lilliana must overcome a hard truth voiced by her young friend Celia: Wishing comes easy. Change don’t.