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In the Company of Others (Father Tim #2)

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  6,162 Ratings  ·  914 Reviews
A stirring page-turner from the bestselling author of the Mitford Series.

Jan Karon's new series, launched with her New York Times bestselling Home to Holly Springs, thrilled legions of Mitford devotees, and also attracted a whole new set of readers. "Lovely," said USA Today. "Rejoice!" said The Washington Post.

In this second novel, Father Tim and Cynthia arrive in the
Hardcover, 399 pages
Published October 19th 2010 by Viking (first published October 2010)
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54 books — 28 voters
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Best Books of 2010
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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The Library Lady
Nov 03, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: adult-fiction
Familiar with the term "Deux ex machina"? It's a device used in ancient Greek drama, where having written themselves into a corner, the author would add a god coming down from the heavens (lowered on stage w/a crane) to solve everything.

Well, I've decided that that's what Father Tim has become. He swoops down from the sky (in this case from an airplane) and by the time he and Cynthia leave all the wrongs have been righted, everyone has found God (the Episcopal sort, even if they're Catholics) an
Dec 11, 2011 rated it really liked it
Another reviewer suggested the Father Tim / Mitford books were an example of "deus ex machina." Made me laugh--although I tend to agree. But--isn't this why readers select these books and return to Father Tim and his wise counsel, again and again? Because he provides a template for hope when our worldly cares seem insurmountable. The fact that the hope provided is the deus part of the literary convention doesn't detract from the writing.

While the overall pattern in every book is the same--Tim is
Mar 22, 2011 rated it it was ok
It's been several years, but I used to enjoy the Mitford series books. So when I saw this on the "high demand" shelf at the library, I picked it up and looked forward to another comfortable, enjoyable read. The setting is Ireland (Father Tim and Cynthia are on vacation). I enjoyed the descriptions of the setting and language - a lot of similarities to Scotland where I was a missionary - but overall this was my least favorite of Karon's books. First, there were way too many characters. I tried to ...more
Jul 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
This book is harder to read than any of the others by this author that I have read. Harder in that I have to work hard to follow who the characters are. There is so much history in it, which is wonderful. It's almost as difficult as ferreting out one's one family history. Still reading ...

I really enjoyed reading this book. I mistakenly thought this was Father Tim's family, while it turns out to be the innkeeper's family. All in all, they are as close as family by the time Tim and Cynthia leave.
Nov 15, 2010 rated it it was ok
This book was a disappointment to me. It was a confusing mixture of two plot lines: one about Father Tim and Cynthia vacationing at a quaint family-run inn in Ireland, the second set in the mid-nineteenth century at the same locale. The 19th century story line was left mid-air with a quick and unsatisfying tie down. The contemporary plot line included so many characters I needed a roster to keep them all straight. Finally, Tim and Cynthia were portrayed as being drawn into the family drama on a ...more
Jul 16, 2012 rated it it was ok
I mainly enjoyed the characters - especially Father Tim and his wife and the dynamics between them in this story. The other characters were also very well-drawn. I liked the setting in Ireland - good description of places, language, and culture. The book had a story within a story when the couple read a journal written more than a generation previously by the man who built the large country house near the B&B where they were staying in Ireland. I listened to this as a book on tape while I wa ...more
I have read most of Jan Karon’s Mitford series as quickly as they were published. I loved them all so much I decided to read them again along with the new Father Tim series. It is so refreshing to read about honest, decent people dealing with regular life in a quaint and humorous way. IN THE COMPANY OF OTHERS failed in my expectations. The story takes the Cavanaugh’s to Ireland and places them in the middle of characters that the story is really about. I felt the plot was weak and there were too ...more
Dec 26, 2010 rated it it was ok
After reading all the Mitford books, this book did not hold a candle. I agree with the other reviews that it was plodding and confusing. when I saw a page with journal, I dreading reading that part. The journal really didn't add to the overall plot. I didn't keep the characters & their relationships straight until the very end.
The ending did (finally) bring it all together but didn't need 400 pages to do it.
Agree that if you are a fan of the Mitford books, you will miss those characters &
Laurel Bradshaw
I Have really enjoyed Jan Karon's books for her interesting characters, uplifting message, and sense of fun and humor. I especially enjoyed the first Father Tim novel, which seemed to be a bit edgier than the previous Mitford series. This book was a bit disappointing to me. I expected much more from a book set in Ireland. Except for the attempt at local dialect (which I listened to as an audiobook) there was nothing much Irish about the setting, or representative of the culture. While the charac ...more
Catherine Leggitt
Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
As I turned the last page, an overwhelming sadness dropped over me. I didn't want to leave this cozy Irish fishing lodge. I'd become so enthralled with the place, visualization facilitated by Jan Karon's awesome mastery of the language. The book is beautifully written. I took this life-altering vacation on the shore of Lough Arrow along with retired Episcopal priest Tim Kavanagh and his wife Cynthia. They came for much needed rest, but got an adventure instead. An intruder startles Cynthia, resu ...more
Oct 22, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2010-reads
Jan Karon is like a fine wine. She gets better and better as the years go on. I loved In the Company of Others. There are so many passages I would like to quote. I agree with Ms Karon, this is her finest yet. Beautiful scenery depicted to us. Tim and Cynthia have one of the most wonderful blessed relationships and I long to be like them. What a wonderful model for us all.

The whole mystery of who was in the cabinet, who stole the painting, just brilliant! I loved the journal writing. I couldn't
Valerie Kyriosity
Mar 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
When I read Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good there were completely unfamiliar references to Tim and Cynthia's Ireland trip. How had I missed a whole book? But there it was, sitting on my shelf unread. The author says this is her favorite of her novels. I'm inclined to agree.

I'm surprised at the not-up-to-snuff copyediting and typesetting, though. I'd expect better from Penguin. I noticed the same in SSwSG, can't recall from the earlier books in the series.

And now I have read three actual ink-
Lana Jackson
May 02, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
Set in a fishing lodge in Ireland. Audio version of book rich with Irish accents and fiddle music. Father Tim (referred to as Reverend in Ireland) and wife, Cynthia (children's book author and illustrator) spend their vacation in a fishing lodge in the countryside. They grow attached to the owners of the lodge and the estranged extended family from the estate house up the hill. This book held much more drama than the usual lighthearted Midford series. Ended well.
Jun 13, 2017 added it
Shelves: book-group, kindle
Not a great book in my opinion. I think it might have enjoyed it more if the main characters (on vacation at an inn in Ireland) were familiar. I had to skim the journal entries from the sainted 1800s physician because they made me very sleepy. If I hadn't been reading this for my book group discussion, I would have put it aside when the heavy praying started.
Oct 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction
I really liked this book. Jan Karon’s books are what used to be called “cozies”. While you read the book you feel wrapped in a hug and the book leaves you feeling better for having read it. For those looking for the “Mitford Books”, those are a different series (9). “In the Company of Others” is part of the Father Tim (2) series, which is set after his retirement and, thus far, outside of Mitford. Father Tim remains the main character and old friends from Mitford have bit parts, but we get to me ...more
Dec 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
It has been a long time since Karon published a book. Such a long wait usually makes me quite anxious to read the next book and I was but I didn't devour this book. Instead it was a little bit slow and I actually set it aside to read another quick book.

I love Karon's Mitford series and the life, hope, simplicity, and spirit that it is infused with. These "Father Tim" books are similar and yet not quite the same. For one thing, the book is entirely from Father Tim's perspective as opposed to a va
Sandra Olshaski
Nov 05, 2010 rated it liked it
In the Company of Others by Jan Karon (Rated: C)
ISBN: 978-0-670-02212-0
Viking Press
Published October 30, 2010
Hardcover, 399 pages

Reviewed by Sandra

The unlikely protagonist is a 70-year-old retired Episcopalian priest named Tim. He and his 64-year-old wife of 8 years spend a vacation in Ireland, “getting in touch with his roots.” While staying at a seemingly charming family-run fishing lodge they encounter a variety of harmless characters… idyllic vacation lies ahead. But…. an intruder appear
Apr 06, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2011
I've been a *little* busy at work the last couple months and definitely feel the need to take a breath. So when I saw this Jan Karon novel at Borders last week, I jumped on it. I couldn't wait to sink back into the slower rhythms and quiet faith of Mitford and Father Tim.

Unfortunately for me, this book isn't set at Mitford, so all we get of the hometown crew are emails, phone calls and some great Uncle Billy jokes. Instead Father Tim and Cynthia have finally gone on vacation to Ireland. While th
Ellen Trautner
Dec 27, 2016 rated it liked it
Don't be fooled by my 3 star rating. I still enjoyed it, as I always enjoy these books, but this one takes place in Ireland and I really missed Mitford. Besides Father Tim and his wife Cynthia, we only get glimpses of Mitford characters Dooley and Emma via emails. Instead, we're introduced to lots of new characters at the B&B they're staying at, both alive and dead (via the journal of the man who built the place in the 1860s). Not only that, but Cynthia sprains her ankle and is house bound, ...more
Nov 22, 2012 rated it it was ok
I've never read any of Jan Karon's very popular Father Tim / Mitford novels, so maybe this shouldn't have been the first one. It's not that it was bad; it certainly wasn't. It sounded right up my alley, too: a long-planned trip to Ireland to explore Tim's Irish heritage, a very out-of-the-way village complete with wandering sheep and torrential Irish rain, cozy hearths and ruddy-cheeked old men telling tall tales by the fire, et al. It just didn't hold my attention. I was pleasantly surprised by ...more
Jan 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
I'm a sucker for the Father Tim stories which now number 10 in total. The novels are centered in a small town in the North Carolina hill country - almost Appalachia and Father Tim, the Episcopal bachelor minister, is beloved by everyone in his small community. Because these are heartfelt stories, he meets the woman of his dreams early on in book one & now retired from his parish they are off to Ireland to find their roots. In this novel, Karon mixes in a long lost journal with a bit of a mys ...more
Apr 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Years ago I gave the elderly women in my life the Mitford series novels, the story of Father Tim and the townspeople in a small southern community. I may have read a passage here and there, but I never read an entire book, which makes my choosing this book from a library shelf all the more mysterious. Despite the very slow start, I was intrigued by the literary and poetic references that are naturally imbedded in dialogue among characters and the life revealed in an ancient journal from the 1860 ...more
Aug 19, 2015 rated it liked it
Its been a few years since I read the last of the Mitford series and the first of the Father Tim books. I loved the Mitford series. In The Company of Others, opens with Tim and Cynthia taking a vacation to Ireland. They stay in a quaint fishing lodge for a few days and then are supposed to meet up with Tim's cousin and his wife and do the "tourist thing." It doesn't quite work out that way. Cynthia re-injures her ankle and has to stay off it and is told by the doctor, absolutely no riding in car ...more
Jan 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Out of all Jan's books, so far, this has been my favorite book. I dream of Ireland and all it encompasses. This book shows father Tim in his real element; with people with problems. We have Cynthia who also is on this go around in Ireland; a second honeymoon if you will. She has several things happen to her, which takes the spotlight from her and lies entirely upon father Tim and his responsibilities while in Sligo. He uses this time to not only enjoy himself and make new friends, and a second f ...more
Lynnda Ell
Oct 30, 2010 rated it really liked it
Jan Karon's warm and gentle voice imbues In the Company of Others with the same ambience we've come to expect from the other Father Tim/Mitford novels. Father Tim and his charming wife, Cynthia, finally travel to Ireland. As usual, plans go awry - more than once.

Father Tim's ability to cope with an endless number of hurting people who seek his help land him and Cynthia in the middle of a very dysfunctional family where secrets pop up like leprechans. Interwoven with Irish poetry and a doctor's j
Kate Scott
Oct 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Joy Gerbode
Feb 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Wow ... quite a book! Too much in it to absorb in one reading, so I need to save it to read again another time. This of course intrigued me because it was Father Tim & Cynthia on a trip to Ireland ... a place I had long desired to visit, and got to do so last summer. Then it concerned one of my favorite themes ... forgiveness ... in giant proportions. The journal of the history of former owners of the inn I must keep for another time ... it was just too much story to get in one reading, so a ...more
Jan 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 100-books
Started this a few years ago and gave up because I didn't enjoy the first chapter. This time, I hung in there and loved the rest of the book. Jan Karon is such a talented writer. The other thing I thought I wouldn't like about this book was that a fair chunk of it is taken up with a historical diary. Always feels like a copout, a convenient way for an author to draw parallels etc. But I ended up getting very attached to the historical story as well as the present day one. Really looking forward ...more
Sep 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. Adored it. It's been a long time since I've read a Jan Karon book, and I somehow missed reading this one when I gave me my mom a copy several years ago. I had two friends tell me this was not Jan Karon's best story, and they were a little disappointed with it, and I think that kept me from reading it sooner. However, I thought it was as wonderful as any of her previous books. Perhaps my Anglophile tendencies and my own strong desire to visit any part of the UK contributed to m ...more
Nov 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: novels
I really WANT to like these newer Father Tim stories by Jan Karon. And there are definitely parts of them that I do like. I am giving this a "charity 4" though, based on past affection for the author. I liked the setting of this in Ireland, and I liked many of the characters, but the writing seems not as good as the actual Mitford books. I had to back up and reread sections a few times to figure out what happened--seemed to be a lot of jumping around, and some "sudden resolutions" that I really ...more
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #163 - In The Company of Others 1 1 Sep 16, 2015 11:22AM  
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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
More about Jan Karon...

Other Books in the Series

Father Tim (2 books)
  • Home to Holly Springs (Father Tim, #1)

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“He eyed in the far corner of the room the carton of books they'd schlepped across the pond(ocean) They were both fearful of being stuck without a decent book, and who knew they would find everything from Virgil to Synge on the shelves of a fishing lodge?” 6 likes
“Everywhere I have sought rest and not found it, except sitting in a corner by myself with a book.” 5 likes
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