Book Review: The Search Committee

5 Mar

A mismatched team of seven hit the road in an Econoline church van on a mission to find a new pastor. They don’t agree on much other than the stops at Hardee’s for coffee and a biscuit. But they stick to the call, trying to slip undetected into worship services across the Southeast—all in hopes of stealing a preacher for their congregation. 

Each member is wrestling to balance their own busy life and personal struggles. And they’re trying to keep their issues to themselves. Forced to spend countless hours together, these very different personalities from different generations begin to bond. And their lives are profoundly changed as they love and support each other through the difficulties in each of their lives.




Tim Owens has a doctorate in environmental engineering and is the co-owner of an environmental engineering firm. He also holds three patents, is a Scoutmaster, and participated in disaster relief in Honduras and Mozambique as a water systems engineer. He currently resides in Summerville, South Carolina, with his wife and four children.


My Impressions:

The Search Committee, Tim Owens’ debut novel, is a book about a small church pastor search committee and its adventures both on the road and at home.  From the back cover, I thought this would be right up my alley.  And while I thought it was humorous in many places and poignant in others, it fell a little flat for me.

The odd assortment of church members — 4 women and 3 men — travel most Sundays across the southeast on the elusive trail of the perfect pastor for their small town Presbyterian church.  Their experiences vary from the ridiculous to the sublime, but they persevere in their mission to fill the pulpit.  Along the way, life definitely happens — a spouse dies, an affair is uncovered, and ghosts from the past show up.

I think the concept of the book is great.  And I liked most of the characters.  But their relationships didn’t really grow all that much.  In the end they do find a suitable pastor for their church, but that was a bit predictable.  So my final verdict on the book was that it was okay.  I will, however, keep an eye out for other books by Owens.

(I received The Search Committee from Tyndale in return for an honest review. The opinions expressed are mine alone.)


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