Amen McBee, the youngest of five sisters, gobbles up words the way other children gobble up sweets. She couldnâ't be more different from her elder twin sisters Arabella and Annabellaâ?called the Bellas. The mischievous Bellas constantly frighten Amen with stories of Mr. Tominskiâ?the old recluse who lives in the woods nearby and mysteriously tends to a flock of doves. The Bellas insist that Mr. Tominski is a dangerous bogeyman who eats children whole, but Papa vows that the â?keeper of the dovesâ? wouldnâ't hurt a soul. When tragedy strikes the family, Amen must decide once and for all who is right.
In the late 1800s in Kentucky, Amie McBee and her four sisters both fear and torment the reclusive and seemingly sinister Mr. Tominski, but their father continues to provide for his needs.