Seeing is Believing by Maureen Morrissey – Book Review

Seeing is Believing by Maureen Morrissey – Book Review

Seeing is Believing

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Mary Christina Barnes is an ordinary small-city Midwestern girl except for one thing: she was born with the uncanny power to feel the emotions of others and hear their thoughts.

Her deeply religious mother sees her psychic gift as a sinister force. Haunted by her mother’s conviction that she is evil, the young woman embarks on a tumultuous journey to understand her gift and use it for good. While her compassionate side aids the police in finding missing children, a darker side threatens to consume her. All she wants is a normal life, but she finds herself having to fight for it.

Her work with the police leads to some unexpected attention and makes this reluctant psychic a target for both those who want her help and those who want to stop her. Seeing is Believing is an evocative tale that explores the complexities of identity, acceptance, and the delicate balance between good and evil.

Will Mary Christina succumb to the pressures around her or rise above them, embracing her unique gifts to forge a path uniquely her own?

Review by George

Mari Barnes has the incredible gift of being able to “see” into other people’s thoughts. She can also “see” lost objects and people. As intriguing as this sounds, Mari learns from the time she was a toddler that this talent can carry plenty of baggage. All through childhood, Mari’s overly religious mother insists that her unusual ability is of the devil and considers her bewildered daughter to be the spawn of Satan. Talk about soul-crushing! Mari finds herself—and her “self”—despite Mom’s hectoring, although she takes a few detours along the way.

Psychic ability is a central theme in Seeing is Believing, but the story focuses more on how Mari copes with her gift and learns to control it. For example, she finds it difficult to think or concentrate with the thoughts of so many others crushing in on her, so she learns to pull down a mental “window shade” to keep them at bay. That trick comes in handy when Mom is on one of her frequent rants.

Mari is a relatable and sympathetic character. She makes some questionable decisions at times (don’t we all?) but develops into a whole and well-rounded person by the end of the book. Anne Barnes’ (Mari’s mother) treatment of her daughter was over the top, even for a religious zealot, but it shaped a portion of the story. I also felt Peter (her dad) could have intervened more on Mari’s behalf, but he remained passive.

Some might have trouble accepting Mari’s ability to “see” into the minds of others, but I didn’t. There are many things in our world that we don’t understand, and at least the possibility wasn’t hard for me to accept.

I found Seeing is Believing to be engaging and enjoyable. It provided a refreshing change of pace from my usual reading.

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Maureen Morrissey

Maureen Morrissey

Maureen Morrissey is a writer, retired educator, wife/mother/grandmother/ daughter/auntie/dog mommy, avid reader, photographer, traveler, blogger, and most recently, half-marathon runner. In her spare time, she volunteers at animal shelters and investigates the quality of rooftop bars in New York City, her hometown. Oh, and she loves concerts, museums and Broadway shows, too.

Maureen began writing her first novel, Woven, the day after retiring from teaching fourth grade, in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic. Housebound, and with the mind-space and time, finally, to dedicate to the undertaking, she dove in to a daily routine of researching, composing and revising Woven; finishing the first draft in Autumn and self-publishing in December 2020.

She just published her second novel and is currently working on an audio book version, and enjoying the companionship and support of her new community of writers and authors.

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