The Noticer by Andy Andrews is one of those books you'll tell your friends and family about, and each one will come away with a different message. The people of Orange Beach, Alabama have been visited for years by a man calling himself Jones, no Mister just Jones, who carries a battered suitcase wherever he goes and changes everyone he meets. Jones takes the time to pay attention to the world around him recognizing that it's the little things that change the world. The book follows him as he counsels married couples, type A personalities, and those who think their life has no purpose. To each he has a message of hope as well as a promise that what they do matters not only to them, but to future generations. This slim novella packs a great deal of punch when it comes to wisdom. I think it's a book I'll reread at different times in my life, because with each reading will come new understanding. This time Jones' story about seagulls was for me: "Five seagulls are sitting on a dock. One of them decides to fly away. How many seagulls are left? " "Well...four." "No, there are still five. Deciding to fly away and actually flying away are two very different things." Did a lightbulb go on for you? It certainly did for me! It's a terrific book for book clubs or gift-giving.
In this blend of fiction, allegory, and inspiration, Andrews tells the story of Jones--a mysterious man who shows up when things look the darkest for the people of Orange Beach, Alabama, and whose unique gift of noticing things that others miss helps us understand why things happen and what we can do about it.