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To Be Where You Are

(Mitford Years #14)

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  8,396 ratings  ·  1,212 reviews

#1 New York Times-bestselling author Jan Karon returns with the fourteenth novel in the beloved Mitford series, featuring three generations of Kavanaghs.

Wounds heal, bonds grow stronger, and celebrations continue...Welcome back to beloved Mitford.

After twelve years of wrestling with the conflicts of retirement, Father Tim Kavanagh realizes he d
Hardcover, 450 pages
Published September 19th 2017 by G.P. Putnam's Sons
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Christine Do yourself a huge favor and read her books in order. By the time you get to this book, you will be totally invested in the characters. Karon does a b…moreDo yourself a huge favor and read her books in order. By the time you get to this book, you will be totally invested in the characters. Karon does a brilliant job of creating fully drawn characters, no matter how small their role, in a town that you will begin to feel is home. But, that only comes after having been a part of all of the laughter and tears experienced through the years. I have not read this most recent book yet but it was downloaded to my Kindle last night. I'm hoping this continues the Mitford story forward from what I consider her best work, Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good.(less)

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Nov 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A big happy sigh and a bit of sadness too because I am back from the land of Mitford after two really pleasurable days spent wallowing in its friendly atmosphere. I love the town, I love the people and I love it every time this author writes a new book.

I have been reading this series for many years now and as the characters have developed I have become more and more involved. Dooley and Lace have grown up before my eyes and now have a child of their own - a bit like my own children! Of course Fa
Sep 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I was going to be chintzy and take a half star away because there was simply not enough Father Tim and Cynthia for me but I just loved the warm embrace of Mitford so much that I gave it the full five stars. How can a 78 year old retired Anglican priest and his artist wife be so fascinating? Because Father Tim is someone we would all like in our lives. A kind man who came to love late in his life, fatherhood by adoption even later and grateful for every blessing he has.

This story mostly centers
Aug 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Now listening to the Audio, which is great, and so calming!

How could the 12th book (or 14th if you count the Fr. Tim books) of any series, still be so fresh and stunning?! Jan Karon again works her word magic with this new book as if she’s just introducing all her Mitford characters. I have read the entire series and this book is right up there with the best.
Fr. Tim has been retired for ten plus years but at 77 he’s not ready to slow down and neither is his wife, Cynthia busy painting pictures
Dale Harcombe
Apr 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have a special fondness for the town of Mitford and its inhabitant. Yes, that means Tim Kavanagh, retired Episcopalian priest and his younger artist wife Cynthia. The elderly Tim who found love late in life is a beautiful example of a godly man who lives out his faith. The interactions between him and Cynthia are very sweet and often made me chuckle. This story also focuses on Dooley, Tim’s adopted son and his wife Lace, who are in the process of adopting a son of their own, Jack. Dooley and L ...more
Sep 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was my first trip to the town Mitford and I was totally captivated. What a wonderful series and I'm so upset with myself for not reading them before. Better late than never, right? Father Tim Kavanagh is dealing with his retirement and his new health regime which is quite humorous. He's trying you have to give him that, even if his smoothies are a bit chunky! I didn't find myself lost at all as I read through this series with all its loveable characters. It was quite easy to follow them thr ...more
Sarah Grace Grzy
Wow. Beautiful. I honestly don't know how to write a proper review for this book, so I don't think I will.

Jan Karon's Mitford series as been the most influential piece of fiction on my life, both spiritual and otherwise. Period. I just have not words to describe the beauty, heartache, and raw emotion that fills this book. I cried numerous times, especially at a plot twist towards the end. Just wow.

I'm not sure if this will be the last Mitford book, but I almost wouldn't mind if it was. As much
Aug 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebook
One of the ways a book can get a rare five star rating from me is when the setting and characters make me want to crawl inside of it and hang out. This is one of those books. While in some ways Mitford and its inhabitants are idealized, there are also plenty of realistic problems and life events. The action picks up not too long after the events of Come Rain or Come Shine, and the reader gets plenty of time with Lace and Dooley on their farm and with Father Tim and Cynthia. One thing I love abou ...more
Oct 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Why are the books that mean the most to you, the hardest ones to write your feelings and thoughts about it? Sometimes, it takes a few days, some time, to step away from the novel you read, so you can get a feel for what you experienced from your book. I will be up-front. My five star rating is probably biased, but I love these characters too much to give them anything less than a five in this book. Jan Karon's books are special to me. They give me moments to think about life. How life is always ...more
R.F. Gammon
May 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book took me home.

Mitford is a series that's very near and dear to my heart. And while this was not the strongest installment, as an ending...which I believe it is...I was fully satisifed. I laughed. I cried. I hugged it. I savored it. Every word was like one last chance to take a new trip to Mitford.

I loved it.

This series won't be for everyone, but it's beautiful and it's godly and it's full of people living ordinary lives and all the messiness therein. It's beautiful.

Farewell to the hom
Chris Conley
Oct 13, 2017 rated it liked it
For some reason, I am not sure what that is, I struggled with this Mitford outing. I have read all of the previous books and love the town and its people. I just could not stay engaged with this one. I may try again and see if the stars align.
Sherri Thacker
Dec 11, 2017 rated it it was ok
As much as I hoped to like this one, I felt it was all over the place. Too many storylines to keep track of and of those storylines I just didn’t “get it”. Not for me. Dnf
Susan Snodgrass
Sep 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Way more than 5 stars! How do I even begin to craft a review worthy of such a novel? I adore my Mitford books. They have pride of place on my shelves. I have read all of them, most twice. And my heart yet yearns to read them all again. Jan Karon has the most amazing heart to write these novels. They are such spiritual nourishment to this reader. I've grinned, gasped, laughed, and wept out loud, sometimes a big, full out ugly cry. This is 447 pages of pure joy.

Seeing old friends from Mitford is
Anne Trinkle
Oct 01, 2017 rated it liked it
I found the last two books of this series tedious. I am the world's biggest fan of Jan Karon's writing and John McDonough's narration. With that said, this book seemed to concentrate on Avis, the local grocer. If you had not read the rest of the series, this book would be very confusing and off putting. There was not a smooth transition between one character's thoughts and another's thoughts or actions. I found myself wondering why Dooley was in Mitford only to realize that Karon had changed voi ...more
If you have not journeyed to Mitford before, this is not the place to begin. But if you’re like me and you have Mitford in your heart, this book allows us to hang onto the magic just a little bit longer.

The people who inhabit Mitford come with baggage. They all, even the children, have real problems—abuse, abandonment, rejection, betrayal, loneliness—to overcome. They are just as flawed, fearful, and far from perfection as we are. But what makes Mitford magical is that we get to pull up a porch
Aug 29, 2017 rated it did not like it
I often marvel at those on the right who long for "the good old days" and want to "take back [their] country" and "make America 'great' again." I never really understood what they were talking about because they seem to be longing for an America that has never existed. Then I read this book, which can only be considered mythological. Granted, as a Jewish woman with disabilities who has struggled against poverty many times and spent most of my adult life in major coastal cities, I'm definitely no ...more
Jill Robinson
Nov 02, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: did-not-finish
I just couldn't do it. I have been a long term fan of Jan Karon and reading Mitford novels are like going home. But this one was horrible. I could not follow her writing style (which seemed very different), I had no idea who was talking when, and it was just boring. As much as I hated to do it, I put it down. I will stick with my memories of Father Tim and Mitford from the previous novels. ...more
The Library Lady
I know that 13 is considered an unlucky number in many cultures, but I think Karon could have stopped right there, leaving Dooley and Lace married to live "happily ever after," in the minds of their readers, Instead, she has gone on to this, #14. And Jan Karon is becoming formulaic.

The kids are more and more twee (Grace Murphy's sequence here is especially icky cutesy), everyone with a crisis overcomes it with the help of the Lord and/or a dog, and Karon takes a sad situation she has set up and
Sep 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I would try to write and describe the people and the story line but there is a lot going on in this book. I gave it 3 out of 5 stars. If I had not gotten stuck or confused a couple of times I would have easily given it a 4.
I really loved the characters they were all so lovable and well described. During the reading I kept getting a horrible feeling in the bottom of my stomach that something bad was going to happen to the characters but thankfully that did not happen. I am not sure I could have
Sep 30, 2017 rated it liked it
To Be Where You Are by Jan Karon is the fourteenth A Mitford Novel. Father Tim is surprised when he receives a call that Esther Bolick has passed away. He is asked to return to Lord’s Chapel to give her eulogy. Dooley and Lacy Kavanagh have an unexpected expense when the pipes burst at Kavanagh Animal Wellness Clinic. Lacy has an opportunity to earn the money needed, but it would mean going away for a couple of months. Would it hinder the completion of Jack Tyler’s adoption? Life is always busy ...more
Nov 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2017
I have been reading Jan Karon since 1999. When I found her back then I binged on the Mitford series until I caught up, then waited for every new installment and was never disappointed when it came.

To Be Where You Are did not evoke that same satisfaction or contentment. I found it very disjointed, jumping from one previously very minor character to another, too often with no context or reason for the jump. I understand that Karon was flushing out new stories of old characters (some of whom I bare
Nov 13, 2017 rated it liked it
I have loved this series since the very first book . Unfortunately, I was disappointed with this one. I felt the writing was scattered. I did not like how she jumped around from one thing to another . I found it confusing. This story just seemed too scattered to me. Not what I expected from an author that I have enjoyed for all these years. Sad to say, the Mitord Series seems to have lost the heart of what made it so enjoyable for all these years.
Allison Tebo
Oct 07, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: small-town-fic
Trying to decide between two and a half stars and three stars...
Amy Leigh
Aug 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
The beginning starts off slow but by no means is this a boring book. This is a continuation of the popular Mitford Series by Jan Karon. It continues the emotional and raw stories of the Kavanagh families. Father Tim is coming to realizations about himself and his purpose. The newly-wed Dooley and Lace have to deal with major tragedy, stress and loss. Jack is the hero or shining star as he heals old wounds and brings the family and town much happiness. This story takes place in a small town but t ...more
Oct 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't want it to be done! As far as I am aware, this is the last (and will be the last) of the Mitford books. Over the past decade or so that I've known about Fr Tim, Cynthia, Dooley, and the lovely folks of Mitford, NC, they've become like family.
I liked that this book didn't send Lace and Dooley off into their new life at Meadowgate as if it would all be roses and sunshine, but was very real with the 'stuff of adulting'. But, even when things don't go as smoothly as they plan, they both know
Phyllis Barlow
Dec 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
I always love Jan Karon's books, and ordinarily I would give this five stars, but I didn't like the way most of the chapters started. It would be something like "He was walking toward the barn..." and I couldn't figure out who "he" was for a few sentences. Was it Dooley? Jack? And some of the minor characters I couldn't remember. It would have been helpful to have a small explanation for context. I still for the life of me do not remember who Willie is, or Lily.

Other than this minor flaw, I tho
Carol Bakker
Oct 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Ah, Mitford. 4.5 stars. This book didn't have the tension/celebration of a wedding but there were some fine moments. I just listened to an interview Karon gave for Wisconsin Public Radio; she said this is the last Mitford book. [sob] I will come back after I've copied quotes into my commonplace book.

I'm ready to go back to At Home in Mitford and reread the whole canon.

Reading intersection: Jan Karon said that she imagined the Orange Marmalade Cake. Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock developed a recip
Vannetta Chapman
Jul 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A Jan Karon book is good for the heart.

I'm really impressed by how moving JK can make a slice of life story. These books are character driven, and what characters they are. The overall effect is at times poignant, funny, and always entertaining.

Highly recommend.

Note: I have NOT read these in order. This audio version was available from my library, so I snatched it up. I've read one or two others, but now I'm ready to go back and re-read in order!
Jan 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: on-shelf, series, x-2019
Nice ending for this long-running, multiple-book series. If it weren't for so many unread books on my shelves and my desire to read all of them I can, while I can, I would start over with this series and binge-read all of them again for a little better cohesiveness. I read the first book, At Home in Mitford in 1996 0r '97, so fourteen books over twenty years must result in a few lose threads.

I think it's really difficult for authors to keep up engaging thoughts and dialog that long, and find it
Elsa K
Dec 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is just the kind of Mitford book I enjoy. I read it slowly to try to savor it, I even read another book in between it to make it last! My few complaints- I wanted more Father Tim and Cynthia and less Dooley/Lace. I think I like them in the background a bit more. And Dooley and Lace seem a bit too perfect in this story. What happened to their character flaws that made them more human? How did they just get over their broken past without some apparent wounds? Don't get me wrong, Mitford is my ...more
Vicki (MyArmchairAdventures)
Sep 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Thank you to @penguinrandomhouse for the advanced galley of "To Be Where You Are", Jan Karon's 14th installment of the beloved Mitford Years books, due to be released on 9/19. My mother-in-law introduced me to this series over 15 years ago though I will confess I haven't kept up with the books in the last several years. Settling into this novel was like visiting old friends and family. Like snuggling into your favorite sweater with a warm cup of cocoa. Father Tim Kavanagh, the Episcopal priest, ...more
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Born Janice Meredith Wilson in 1937, Jan Karon was raised on a farm near Lenoir, North Carolina. Karon knew at a very early age that she wanted to be a writer. She penned her first novel when she was 10 years old, the same year she won a short-story contest organized by the local high school. Karon married as a teenager and had a daughter, Candace.

At 18, Karon began working as a receptionist for

Other books in the series

Mitford Years (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • At Home in Mitford (Mitford Years, #1)
  • A Light in the Window (Mitford Years, #2)
  • These High, Green Hills (Mitford Years, #3)
  • Out to Canaan (Mitford Years, #4)
  • A New Song (Mitford Years, #5)
  • A Common Life: The Wedding Story (Mitford Years, #6)
  • In This Mountain (Mitford Years, #7)
  • Shepherds Abiding (Mitford Years, #8)
  • Light from Heaven (Mitford Years, #9)
  • Home to Holly Springs (Mitford Years, #10)

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