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Publisher's Summary

Since he was a boy growing up in Mississippi, Father Tim has lived what he calls "the life of the mind". Except for cooking and gardening and washing his dog, he never learned to savor the work of his hands. And then he finds a derelict nativity scene: twenty figures, including a flock of sheep, that have suffered the indignities of time and neglect.

Could he give the small company new life? Restore the camel's ear, repaint every piece, replace a missing nose on a wise man? "You can't teach an old dog new tricks!" he reminds himself. It's when he imagines the excitement in Cynthia's eyes that he steps up to the plate and begins a small journey of faith that touches everyone around him.

The eighth novel in the bestselling Mitford Years series is a meditation on the best of all presents: the gift of one's heart. Lovingly written, it seeks to restore the true Christmas spirit and give everyone a seat at Mitford's holiday table.

Continue the holiday cheer with two more trips to Mitford with The Mitford Snowmen and Esther's Gift, both included in this audio edition.

©2001, 2002, 2003 Jan Karon; (P)2003 Penguin Audiobooks and Recorded Books, LLC

What members say

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Performance

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  • Overall

Shepherds Abiding

As always with Jan Karon books, the story line draws you in and you become immersed in the warm feeling of rural life. The Hardships, Love, petty bickering are all a part of America's every day life, minus the hustle and bustle of big city life. The streets are familiar to each and every one of us, even though the names are different. The easy going life, is heart warming for both men and women, and brings back flashes of old memories buried deep in our minds. I purchased the book series primarily for my wife but found myself wrapped in the warmth of the story, and before I knew it I too was hooked.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story

Christmas in Mitford

I love the Mitford series of books and this one is no exception. Upbeat and positive as always. A great book to listen to during the holiday season.

31 of 33 people found this review helpful

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  • Story

Inspiring

This is my fifth Christmas to listen to this audiobook. The first time I listened, I didn't even know this was part of a series. I soon fell in love with the characters and ultimately listened to the entire series in order. But I come back to this one every year. This year I am listening with my 16 yo daughter. Every year I laugh at Uncle Billy and Rose, hope with Hope, and stress out a bit with Father Tim as he takes on a project that would be overwhelming for a man half his age. Every year I return to my roots as Father Tim returns to his, and I remember with him the true meaning of Christmas.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
  • Story
  • Moty4U
  • Farmington, UT USA
  • 01-07-13

Great for the Holidays or any time

If you could sum up Shepherds Abiding in three words, what would they be?

Inspirationally comfortable

Who was your favorite character and why?

It would have to be Father Tim. I enjoy hearing how his mind works which connects so freely with his good heart.

What about John McDonough’s performance did you like?

I love how Mr. McDonough can so accurately portray each of the different characters. I've read all that Jan Karon has written and these voices are as interesting to me as the book itself.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No. I have heard this book several times and want to make it last as long as possible.

Any additional comments?

I often highly recommend this book and this entire series of Mitford books to my friends

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Loved the series

If you could sum up Shepherds Abiding in three words, what would they be?

I have listened to the entire Mitford series and loved each book.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Father Tim is great. A good man with human failings.

What about John McDonough’s performance did you like?

He is the voice of the Mitford series for me. I am not sure I could listen to the books with another narrator.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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I love this book!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes- I might even give it as a gift.

What other book might you compare Shepherds Abiding to and why?

I might compare this book to The Christmas Quilt by Jennifer Chiaverini. They are both very heartwarming stories with well-developed characters. They both are part of a series. They both are written in such a way that I really want to know about these characters and I care about them. These books both make me want to read more of the series.

If you could take any character from Shepherds Abiding out to dinner, who would it be and why?

I think I would take Father Tim and Cynthia out to dinner. They are written as such intelligent, caring, creative people.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael
  • Kenner, LA, United States
  • 03-16-12

Shepherds Abiding

This book was a sweet Christmas story. I enjoyed it and would recommend it to anyone.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Performance
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Soothing Christmas Read

Would you listen to Shepherds Abiding again? Why?

Shepherds Abiding is already on my

What was one of the most memorable moments of Shepherds Abiding?

When they give each other their gifts.

What about John McDonough’s performance did you like?

Even though Fr. Cavanaugh was born and raised in the South, I have never imagined that he would have a terribly strong accent, unless the circumstances called for it. Mr. McDonough's performance followed my perception, so I was very satisfied with his interpretation.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Another Gift of the Magi.....

Any additional comments?

I am glad I bought it. It will be in my permanent collection.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Julie
  • Salem, UT, United States
  • 01-09-12

She did it again!

What made the experience of listening to Shepherds Abiding the most enjoyable?

I love hearing about all of the events in this little town of Mitford.

Have you listened to any of John McDonough’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Yes, I love all of them!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Very touching story.

I love the Mitford books, and this one is no exception. I find myself not even caring about how slow the traffic is when I'm listening.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful