Sunday, October 05, 2014

Jan Karon's Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good ~ Reviewed

Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good: The New Mitford Novel 
By Jan Karon
Pages 670
Binding Softcover
Release Date Sep 2, 2014
Publisher Penguin Group USA
Series Mitford Years
ISBN 0399172211

After five hectic years of retirement from Lord's Chapel, Father Tim Kavanaugh returns with his wife, Cynthia from a so-called pleasure trip to the land of his Irish ancestors. While he is glad to be a t home in Mitford, something is definitely missing: a pulpit. But when he's offered one, he decides he doesn't want it. Maybe he 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.


Father Tim is back! Those who have visited Mitford before will be excited. It has been a long time since Father Tim was in Mitford. I love the Mitford series by Jan Karon (10 novels published between 1994 and 2014 with two other novels called the Father Tim novels)! Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good (don’t you love the title) is the first book published in the Mitford series since 2005. I love the Mitford Series for many reasons but the main reason is the town and the people are so real to me. I know that Mitford exists somewhere and that Father Tim and Cynthia must be real people. I feel like I know all the people in Mitford. Jan Karon is a master at creating believable characters and at creating many characters who each have distinct personalities. Another thing I love about Mitford is it is a place where people care about each other and where God’s wisdom is shared openly. There are always both laughter and tears in these novels. If you have read the series before and loved them or even just liked them, you will love this new one. The author manages to pay homage to all the characters and stories in the series without it feeling like a review or a summary. But if you have never read any of the books and there is any chance at all you will read them, I strongly encourage you to read the books in order. If you are a reader who has no intention of reading any of the other novels, I do believe you would still enjoy this book just not on the same level as someone who is familiar with the characters, the inside jokes and all the nuances of the relationships. If this were the first book I read, there would be a lot of references I wouldn’t understand and I probably would be a little frustrated. For me, there where times in this book where I laughed (as always) and one time in particular when I burst into tears (I won’t tell you which part). I believe it is the best one of the series. I love the characters, I love the story lines and I love that Father Tim’s relationship with Jesus is shown so clearly and is real not pretentious and not making him look like he is perfect. This novel (and series) is great for someone who wants to read inspirational stories about people that include all the daily challenges of life and family told with humor and truth. (If you have never read any of the books and aren’t sure you want to read all ten, at least read the first book At Home in Mitford before you read this one and it will increase your enjoyment of the story.)

Reviewed by: Susan Aken

1 comment:

Ane Mulligan said...

Thanks, Susan. I popped over to Amazon and bought it. I've loved the series, and I was delighted when people said my debut novel had the feel of Mitford!!