Amen McBee, the youngest of five sisters, gobbles up words the way other children gobble up sweets. She couldn't be more different from her elder twin sisters Arabella and Annabella-called the Bellas. The mischievous Bellas constantly frighten Amen with stories of Mr. Tominski-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 "keeper of the doves" wouldn't hurt a soul. When tragedy strikes the family Amen must decide once and for all who is right.