Mack has lost his farm. After six generations of Iowa farming, the Barnes family has had to call it quits -- just barely saving the family home. Mack and Jodie, along with their two children, Kenzie and Young Taylor, are struggling to gain a foothold in this unfamiliar season of their life together.
When Mack returns home after a brief stay in the psychiatric ward, it soon becomes clear that his depression is only the beginning of his troubles. Jodie tries to welcome him back; yet she has coped for so long, she cannot recognize her own desperation -- until she's drawn into the arms of another man. Fourteen-year-old Kenzie has turned to Jesus for comfort and believes if the family would just come back to their faith, they would all be happy again. Young Taylor, at seventeen, keeps his distance from everyone and plagues his parents with his unseemly Goth attire and attitude. And Rita, Mack's mother and the family matriarch, simply works harder to care for her family, in ways both helpful and annoying. The family's efforts to stick together through these unsettling times seem only to be driving them irrevocably apart.
Despite the fear and isolation caused by the tragedies of the Barnes family in the last few years, love reveals its stubborn resilience. Dwelling Places is a story that captures the spirit of the American heartland and the complexity of human relationships as it follows Mack and Jodie and their family on a search for a place where mind and heart can live peacefully at last.