Top critical review
Reviewed in the United States on October 15, 2015
have been a fan of Jan Karon and the Father Tim/Mitford books for years, so I eagerly awaited the newest one "Come Rain or Shine". If you haven't read her books, the main character is Father Tim, a middle-aged single Episcopalian priest in a small town in the mountains of North Carolina, who suddenly finds himself the owner of a dog as big as a Volkswagen, father of an adopted teenage son, and husband of a charming children's books author. Karon's books are full of well-developed characters who may be funny, lovable, quirky, cantankerous, self-righteous, or annoying, like all small towns.
"Come Rain or Shine" is about the wedding of Father Tim's son Dooley and his long time girlfriend, Lace. It was disappointing. Rather than being told from the point of view of Father Tim, like most of her books, it is told from the viewpoint of many characters, in short snippets. Many times the speaker is not identified and sometimes I wasn't sure who was speaking. A new character is introduced by name only early in the book, in such a way that I wasn't sure if it was a new character or a character I had forgotten. When that character is finally brought into the action, it was implausible, and the dialogue attributed to that character wasn't realistic (I don't want to give away too much in case anyone is planning to read it).
I think I read somewhere that Karon plans to make this the last of the Father Tim/Mitford books. If so, the series is going out with a whimper, not a bang.