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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good

somewhere safe
By: Jan Karon
Series: (Mitford Years #10)
ISBN: 0399167447
Publisher: Putnam Adult
Publication Date: 09/02/2014
Format: Audio
My Rating: 4 Stars
A publishing event: #1 New York Times–bestselling author Jan Karon returns—and invites her millions of fans to join her again in Mitford.
"After a long hiatus, Karon has returned with a novel that offers something for those who believe and those who do not. All the beloved quirky characters are here, the past is neatly summarized and the future, full of hope." — Kirkus Reviews
After five hectic years of retirement from Lord’s Chapel, Father Tim Kavanagh returns with his wife, Cynthia, from a so-called pleasure trip to the land of his Irish ancestors. While glad to be at home in Mitford, something is definitely missing: a pulpit. But when he’s offered one, he decides he doesn’t want it. Maybe he’s lost his passion.
His adopted son, Dooley, wrestles with his own passion—for the beautiful and gifted Lace Turner, and his vision to become a successful country vet. Dooley’s brother, Sammy, still enraged by his mother’s abandonment, destroys one of Father Tim’s prized possessions. And Hope Murphy, owner of Happy Endings bookstore, struggles with the potential loss of her unborn child and her hard-won business.
All this as Wanda’s Feel Good Café opens, a romance catches fire through an Internet word game, their former mayor hatches a reelection campaign to throw the bums out, and the weekly Muse poses a probing inquiry: Does Mitford still take care of its own?
Millions of fans will applaud the chance to spend time, once more, in the often comic and utterly human presence of Jan Karon’s characters. Indeed, they have never been more sympathetic, bighearted, and engaging.

My Review

Jan Karon is back, bringing lovers of the charming small mountain town of North Carolina and quirky characters (#10 in the Mitford Series) with cozy Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good –offering hope for the future.
Lovable, humble, and wise Father Tim Kavanagh reflects on the past, and looks forward to the future with his wife Cynthia, back in Mitford. After a few years into his retirement, following an emotional trip to his hometown in Ireland, where he discovered an unknown half- brother.
However, upon his arrival the entire village seems up be in unsettled with all sorts of problems. Even though Father Tim is glad to be back, something is missing, and he is undecided about his future.
Cynthia is a beloved author of children's books, and quite busy; however, Father Tim feels certain God will provide and offer him answers. He decides to turn down the bishop's request, to return to his old parish, after what has taken place in the past.
He decides to take on the job of operating the village bookstore, while the owner is on bed rest due to her pregnancy, while still raising money for the children’s hospital and continuing with his good deeds. Dooley Barlowe, his foster son, and the young man he raised as his own, is well on his way to becoming a veterinarian.
However, there are still siblings, with issues, like Dooley’s brother Sammy. Wanda’s Feel Good Café opens, a romance catches fire through an Internet word game, their former mayor hatches a reelection campaign to throw the bums out, and the weekly Muse poses a probing inquiry: Does Mitford still take care of its own?
The heartwarming novel is filled with the delightful characters from the previous Mitford novels: Ester Cunningham, the mayor; Fanny Skinner and her sister Shirlene; Harley and Hèléne; plus Dooley's brothers; Father Tim's special buddies, Mule, JC and Coot.
As a native of NC, only a few hours from Mitford (the fictional town, based on Blowing Rock, NC) is one I have visited many times. As always, when I read Jan Karon’s books, I think back to my times at this special place throughout my childhood. I am planning a trip next month for my fall fix with log cabin, reading, rocking chair, fireplace, and lots of hiking with beautiful waterfalls and scenery. I miss the days my son attended college in Banner Elk, NC and quaint B&Bs, shops, and skiing.
I listened to the audiobook, and the narrator offered an engaging performance; however, missed the town maps, as I always enjoy viewing in her print books.
Jan Karon has a special gift of creating lovable yet flawed characters, ordinary people, with problems and struggles and always includes an inspiring and a special takeaway which will readers remember long after the book ends.
I would recommend reading, even as a standalone, if you have not read Karon’s previous books; however, even more spectacular, if you have read the previous books to catch up with friends of Mitford!
Sept Must Reads

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