At the end of At Home in Mitford there was a "teaser," an excerpt form the first chapter of A Light in the Window. Oh that was not fair!! So of course, upon finishing that I stomped off to the living room to find the second installment of Mitford, confident it would be on my shelves with several of the other Mitford books I had picked up at my favorite haunt (Half Price Books!).
Needless to say, when I got there and found that I did NOT own the second Mitford book, I nearly screeched; thankfully I remembered it was past midnight and I would wake my sleeping sons and my hubby. So I pulled up my library website and found it was on the shelf at my neighborhood branch and purposed to go there first thing in the morning.
Once in possession of the book, I read through it as fast as I could. I must admit to being a bit frustrated with Father Tim. He was not as approachable as he was in the first book. But after thinking about it, well...He was in LOVE! And he was conflicted about what to do with the lovely Cynthia Coppersmith. Oh, yeah, and he's dealing with Dooley Barlowe too boot. Well, I daresay, Father Tim acted almost--human!! It was a bit frustrating. Aren't clergy supposed to be perfect? Hmmmmm...
A Light in the Window is a vehicle to take you to Mitford again. But as with any town nothing stands still. Mitford has had some upheaval since our last visit and the characters have a few more bumps and bruises. I don't think A Light in the Window was quite as comfortable as At Home in Mitford, but it was worth traveling home again for a visit.
And you will want to go back again for These High, Green Hills. The trip back to Mitford didn't last any longer than the first two. These books insist that I read as quickly as I can (and as late into the night as my eyes will allow).
Again the story is not as soft and cozy as the first Mitford book. There is tragedy amidst the day to day happenings, but there is joy, sweet as lilac blossoms, too. Father Tim and Cynthia have married (thank goodness!!) and are settling into their new life. Karon, again turns to focus more on the townfolk and their quirks and intricacies. There are new characters who upset the delicate balance of Mitford.
My last trip to the library was to pick up A Common Life, which is actually Book Six in the series, but chronologically falls between Books Two and Three. While there I found The Mitford Snowmen and Esther's Gift. These are sweet little short stories, not even as long as a chapter. I'm not sure they are "must haves," but if you have a Mitford fan on your gift list they would be a fun gift.
As one gracious commenter says, Jan Karon does have a website. It is as welcoming as a trip to Mitford.
A Light in the Window was on my reading list for the Winter Reading Challenge. But of course I got wound up, caught up and distracted in Mitford. I'm still pretty sure I can finish all the books on my list even with a few Mitford vacations.