After a career of many years in the east, Norma Jean Clark returns to take over the old home place in Herpel, Arkansas expecting to find peace and quiet. Second day home she is met with a land dispute that leads into a personal mystery. What really happened to her mom? Did her dad hold secrets to his dying day? She heads down a pathway to find the truth.
In the first of many Norma Jean's mysteries to come, Herpel Holler Homecoming begins with Norma Jean Clark returning to the old farm. The homestead and land belonged to the Clark family for generations, most recently willed to Norma when her father died.
Jason Brahm, whom Norma had grown up with from a toddler, had taken over the farm duties when Dad Clark got too old to continue. Jason had been left with the Clark's when his parents moved on. He'd always been treated as a member of the Clark family and Norma's Dad had become his dad.
Gentry Newsom enters in the story as a determined land developer who will not take no for an answer. Through Gentry, Norma finds a long lost cousin, Shelly McComb who is claiming part of the Clark land.
Pauly Parks, a neighbor also abandoned and taken in by Danny Clark, is a man with a child's mind, but as the mystery unfolds, Norma realizes, though mentally challenged, Pauly is intelligent and knows more about the past than she was aware.
“Pauly knows, soul’s in heaven,” Pauly put a finger to his lips. “Shhhhh, must not tell.” His voice changed to a whisper. “Shhhh, don’t tell preacher. Must not tell. . . ” Pauly puzzled and then nodded. “Not in the grave not in the well.” Pauly laughed with a personal glee. “It rhymes, rhymes, true not in the well, but rhymes.”
With the country ways of Aunt Ida and Norma’s inquisitive mind, a story unfolds revealing secrets that lead her on a journey to find the truth about the past she thought she knew all too well.
Set in the Arkansas Ozarks, the mystery is told from the Christian perspective of country folks, both good and bad traits, and works through questions and answers to a satisfying conclusion.