Modern Baptists by James Wilcox

Jul 16, 2010

Set in small town Tula Springs, Louisiana, Modern Baptists is the story of middle-aged bachelor Bobby Pickens who decides to let his recently released ex-con half-brother move in with him. Bobby makes this decision because he thinks he is dying of melanoma and there will be no one to mourn his death. After half-brother F.X. moves in, Bobby learns that he doesn't have cancer after all. But it's too late to dislodge F.X., who has settled in for the long term. F.X.'s aim in life is to be a celebrity--preferably a film star but after getting caught selling cocaine while working at a dinner theatre, he needs a fresh start. He hatches a plan to gain notoriety by having his new girlfriend, Toinette force herself on him, in a moment of passion. The resulting trial would surely be covered by all the major media. Meanwhile, Bobby loses his job at Sonny Boy Bargain Store and toys with the idea of getting his preaching diploma and opening a church for modern Baptists (Baptists who are sick of hell and sin and will be allowed to drink in moderation). Wilcox writes with humor and compassion about his characters who have flaws but also good intentions. A sense of spirituality exists in this novel but salvation comes not from God but from the characters' need for community.

Written by Leslie L.


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