All Souls - Donna D. Vitucci
ALL SOULS begins as Vivian Marker arrives with her seven year-old daughter Lindy in a new Ohio town. As a young widow, Vivian has dedicated her life to raising Lindy, and to the priests for whom she serves as housekeeper in small-town Mt. Healthy -- first Father Joachim, and then the younger Father Benedict, once he is assigned to the St. Sebastian parish. Vivian’s vigilance falters as her feelings of self are awakened by Father Benedict’s friendship. Her fantasy of family, however much it is imagined, distracts her at the very time when Lindy, now fourteen, most needs guidance.
Father Benedict embraced his vocation partly as a means of avoiding the consequences of his headstrong youth. He treats Vivian and Lindy as his pseudo-family but now he begins to see in a new light the young woman emerging from the precocious girl who has dried his dishes and helped fold his laundry.
In their summer before high school, best friends Lindy and Marielle fall in with fellow teenagers Joey, and older bad-boy Tony. Their explorations run the gamut, and some of Lindy’s acting out with Tony is provoked by her desire to shock, allure and even seduce Father Benedict.
The teenagers’ antics pitch Father Benedict, Lindy, and Vivian into episodes of caution, transgress, and reckoning. The clouding of Vivian’s good sense, and the potential loss of Lindy, compel her to spill a secret she thought she’d left behind in Indiana -- a reveal that has consequences for all.