Jan Karon’s “Father Tim” novels in order are “”Home to Holly Springs” followed by “In the Company of Others.” Karon’s novel “Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good” is also told from Father Tim’s point of view.
“Home to Holly Springs” sees Father Tim, the retired priest from Karon’s popular “Mitford” novels, take the center stage, returning to his hometown of Holly Springs, Mississippi. A mysterious, unsigned note brings Father Tim back to his birthplace, where he reconnects with old friends and family members. Flashbacks reveal parts of Father Tim’s past, and his journey to seminary in particular, but it’s the revelation of a deep family secret that forms the drama of the novel.
“In the Company of Others” finds Father Tim journeying to Ireland in search of his Kavanagh ancestry. Along with wife Cynthia, he takes up residence in a quaint fishing lodge, but a burglar, a stolen painting and a deep secret held by the lodge owners all serve to complicate the trip. Father Tim serves as a confidant to the lodge-owning Conor family, helping them conquer their long-held secrets.
“Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good” is technically a “Mitford” novel, but the story focuses primarily on Father Tim. Returning to Mitford after his journey to Ireland, Father Tim feels his retirement more than ever before. Hesitant to take up the pulpit, he nevertheless works to help Mitford residents work through their problems.