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Saint Maybe

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Chapter 1: The Airmail Bowling Ball Summary

Everyone on Waverly Street knows each other. There are the foreigners, a group of Middle Eastern students who attend Johns Hopkins, practice their English and cook with curry spices. The newlyweds, although they have been married for two years now, and the Bedloes, everyone's ideal apple pie family, two cheerful parents and three handsome children, a dog, a cat and assorted goldfish. Ian is the easygoing youngest son, who prefers to wear plaid shirts, ripped jeans and high tops held together with electrical tape to school. In 1965, there is a dress code, but it does little good to call Ian's mother to come pick him up. She is likely to turn up dressed just as sloppily, in one of Ian's worn flannel shirts with a granddaughter's pink plastic.....

Chapter 2: The Department of Reality Summary

Thomas and Agatha are coloring while their mother naps. Daphne cries, but Lucy does not wake up. Agatha is not allowed to pick up the baby and give her a bottle, because Thomas dropped Daphne last week. Agatha thinks that is not fair - she is much bigger and more mature than Thomas is. At 7, Agatha is large for her age. Thomas says he hates this coloring book. Agatha says Danny gave the coloring book to them, and Thomas claps his hand over his mouth as if he has said something blasphemous.

Agatha knows that soon Daphne will start to wail loudly, sounding sad, lonely and lost. They go in the baby's room, which smells of dirty diapers. Thomas tries to amuse Daphne in her crib. In the kitchen,.....

Chapter 3: The Man Who Forgot How to Fly Summary

Ian remembers watching an amoeba through a microscope in science class, as it absorbed a dot of food. Ian cannot absorb Danny's death. How could Danny possibly forget to slow down around a curve at the end of their block? How could he run into a stone wall that has been there since before Danny was born? Ian is sure Danny killed himself, because Ian told him Lucy was having an affair. Ian wonders if he told his Mom, would she say, "Why sweetheart, is that all that's bothering you? Listen, every last one of us has caused somebody's suicide." Probably not.

Lucy is growing steadily paler. She does not have any relatives to help with the children. Bee feels she ought to offer to help more,.....

Chapter 4: Famous Rainbows Summary

Thomas is getting ready for Church Day Camp. Grandma Bedloe chides Ian gently for not sending the children to the Presbyterian Day Camp, but Ian counters that the Presbyterian camp costs money. The Church of the Second Chance camp is free. Daphne, a toddler now, wants to take her lawn mower pull toy to camp, but Thomas is afraid the bigger boys will laugh at her. Agatha has brought a mustard seed from their mother's jewelry box for sharing hour. This makes Thomas mad, because she hardly ever lets him even look in the jewelry box. Agatha says that is because Thomas cannot keep secrets. He is the one who told Mrs. Jordan their father's name. Agatha shows Thomas a secret picture from the jewelry box, with their mother standing in.....

Chapter 5: People Who Don't Know the Answers Summary

Doug Bedloe is bored during his retirement. Whenever he tries to help with the children, he does something wrong, and Ian or Bee takes over. Doug's few efforts to help are ineffectual, as when he tries to mop the muddy kitchen floor without sweeping it first. Initially, Doug planned to volunteer coaching baseball, but soon he realizes he has been working with adolescents for a lifetime. Adolescents are shallow, and Doug is tired of them. Doug really misses Danny. Of his own three children, Danny was the only one Doug could really talk to.

The only thing Doug really enjoys these days is fixing things, but not enough things get broken to keep him busy. One day, Doug notices one of the accident- prone foreigners on the roof,.....

Chapter 6: Sample Rains Summary

On Saturdays, the Church of the Second Chance does Good Works. They paint or repair an elderly member's house, or help someone who is in need. Today they are painting Rev. Emmett's house. Thomas and Daphne love Good Works. Agatha is fifteen and has to be talked into coming. On the way over, Agatha talks about what they would do in a nuclear war. She suggests that the entire family move into a grocery store, where they would have plenty of supplies to live. The young people, including Claudia's children, would be the future generation. The old people, like Grandma and Grandpa Bledsoe, would bring wisdom. When Thomas questions if Ian should come, Agatha insists.

"No," she said finally," Ian comes too. He's the one who keeps us all together."

At Rev. Emmett's.....



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