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Light from Heaven, by Jan Karon

     This is the last novel in the Mitford Years series. If you’ve been keeping up with the series, you’re almost certain to be eagerly awaiting this book to find out the latest on the often eccentric but almost always loveable characters. You’ll read about people you’ve learned to love–Father Tim, Cynthia, Dooley Barlowe, Louella, and many more. Father Tim faces a new challenge which will introduce you to an entirely new group of delightful individuals.  You’ll also be happy to know that we aren’t finished with Father Tim. Karon’s new series, The Father Tim Novels, will begin in 2007. 

Light_from_heaven_1     For those who haven’t yet read any of Karon’s novels, the first book, "At Home in Mitford," is the place to start. I started at about the fourth book in the series several years ago. I could understand the plot, but I wondered why so many people were enthusiastic about the series. Back I went to book one. Now that I could watch the characters from the beginning, I became a fan!

     The setting for the series is Mitford, North Carolina, a small town modeled after Blowing Rock. The main character, Father Timothy Kavanagh, starts the series as an aging bachelor, lonely despite his close relationships with members of his church and with many other Mitford residents. He acquires a dog, takes in a boy who needs parenting, and then, much to his surprise, finds the right woman to love. The series takes him through the last years of his ministry and then through the first years of an active, challenging retirement. If you like reading about small towns where everybody knows almost everybody and enjoy inspirational fiction, try this series!   

(Helen Snow, Information Services)

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