Who doesn’t want to live in Mitford? A nice, small town, with no drug problem, no teen pregnancy, no derelict trailer parks, no feral cat colonies, no roadside dump and no vape shop? I’d love it! And, who wouldn’t want to know Father Tim and Cynthia, Dooley and Lace and all the other wonderful liver mush-eating, Cheerwine-drinking denizens of the North Carolina mountain town? Jan Karon’s Mitford is more than a book series–its a whole other world. A world that hugs you tight and makes you believe in miracles. It’s a snow globe year round!
It’s hard to review a book in a series without providing spoilers to those just starting to immerse themselves in a new fictional world. In retirement Father Tim is finding himself almost as busy as when he served as Priest at Lord’s Chapel Episcopal Church. He and his artist wife, Cynthia, have been thru a lot of adventures since his retirement. Their trip to Ireland was a favorite of mine. Their little band of friends and family, too, has undergone changes. This time it’s Avis, the town’s grocer who was locally sourcing food before it was a hipster-thing, who needs their help.
Out at Meadowgate Farm, Dooley is dealing with a big challenge to his new career and Lace has a professional opportunity of a lifetime while also enjoying the benefit of a dearly loved answered prayer. [No spoilers, remember?]. Dooley’s widely-flung siblings are making their way in the world as well. His birth mother is back, too, providing an opportunity for grace if it can be given.
I love these books because they illustrate how we should live with each other. They are earnest, they are idealized, but they are sweet and comforting and best of all, the election never hit Mitford so there’s no political navel-gazing. Except, possibly, over the Mayor’s race, but that can be discussed in over a huge slice of OMC. [If you don’t recognize that abbreviation, keep reading the series–you soon will.]
Best of all, she’s quit trying to explain who everyone is and how they met–she’s back to writing the books for the series readers. Hurray!!
I needed this book this month. I needed the hug, the prayer and the love that it conveyed. I just wish Father Tim had stepped out of character and told Dooley’s brother to pray AND apply for financial aid! No one in books ever applies for financial aid. Think of the lives that could have been changed if Father Tim had offered to wrestle with the FAFSA with Dooley’s brother? A teeny, tiny thing in a sea of the sweetest sweet tea the South ever served.
Read my review of Come Rain or Come Shine [the previous book in the series]