Although this is a somewhat depressing book, it has quite a bit to say about human nature and how we all try to make meaningful connections with one another. In a small Southern town, Mick is a thirteen-year-old who dreams of leaving everything behind and becoming a famous composer. Biff is a restaurant owner who wonders what the heck he’s going to do with the rest of his life now that his wife has died. Jack is the local drunk who is looking for any kind of salvation, and Dr. Copeland is an African American physician who can’t understand why the other Blacks in his town won’t take more responsibility for their lives. All of them have found some relief talking to John, a deaf mute who provides each of them with what they need most-someone to listen. What they never stop to consider is that John may have problems-big problems-of his own. Each lonely character’s heart is hunting for something-love, compassion, answers to life’s big questions. And it’s a hunt that most of us can relate to. A deep, little bit weepy, read.