If the Barclays are a “good” example of an Odyssey family, the Rathbones are the complete opposite. Bart Rathbone, the father, wouldn’t stand up to scrutiny. There are few ethical questions that he’s inclined to ignore. From unscrupulously coaching a softball team to using shady methods to run his electronics shop, “The Electric Palace,” to coming up with all manners of get-rich-quick schemes, Bart affably stands for everything Whit—and the world of Odyssey—is against.
As Odyssey’s resident window-washer and philosopher, Bernard takes great pride in doing things right—putting him at odds with today’s shortcuts and shortcut-takers. Despite his grousing and muttering, he has a heart of gold and tells great stories, which makes him a natural to host the television program, “B-TV.”
Connie has worked at Whit’s End since she moved to Odyssey. She is spontaneous and never inclined to hold back what she’s thinking, but she has a strong heart for discipleship—especially toward the kids at Whit’s End.
Eugene is Whit’s dependable, eccentric genius of an assistant. Whether he’s working at Whit’s End, teaching at Campbell College, or developing another big invention, Eugene knows everything about everything (or thinks he does).
John Avery Whittaker
“Whit” is an inventor, author, entrepreneur and owner of Whit’s End—an ice cream shop and “discovery emporium” where kids can be kids. His wise counsel, inventiveness and insight have made him a trusted friend and confidant to everyone in Odyssey.
After an on-and-off relationship lasting several years, Katrina Shanks finally married the relationally-challenged Eugene Meltsner. His mental equal in every way, she is a softer, non-hysterical version of Eugene. The star-crossed intellectuals were born to be together.
Tom is an old friend of Whit (he calls him “John Avery”) and owns an apple farm outside of town. He coached many of Odyssey’s sports teams, and ably served as Odyssey’s mayor through its most difficult times. Tom is known for his wisdom and “country sense.”