"They Almost Always Come Home" is a Christian general fiction novel with a lot of suspense. The characters were interesting and complex, and they dealt with realistic problems. The world-building was excellent, especially for the wilderness trip. The story came alive in my imagination, and it felt like these events really could have happened.The first thirty-two pages were mostly Libby thinking about her situation and doing little but worrying about the various possibilities of what could have happened to her husband. It's tantalizing, but so little real, solid information was given about how this state of things came about that it felt a bit slow-paced to me.However, after that, other people started interacting with Libby and she became more active in dealing with the problem. From that point on, the story was fast-paced and the suspense built nicely so I had a hard time putting the novel down. Near the end, we get Greg's perspective of his trip and what happened, which was nice and was worked into the story at a very good spot.The target audience appeared to be Christians or those with a Christian background. The characters were Christians trying to figure out how to deal with a God who doesn't always give you what you think you need the most. It's not preachy (and there were no conversions), but it definitely had a strong Christian element to it.The novel was written in first person, present tense ("I run" instead of "I ran"). (Married) sex was implied. There was no bad language. Overall, I'd recommend this novel as exciting and insightful clean reading.I received this book as a review copy from the publisher.
They Almost Always Come Home is different than anything I've ever read before. The main character, Libby, is contemplating leaving her husband. So when he didn't return from a camping trip, she was actually mad that she didn't get the chance to do it. Her mind raced with the what-ifs and it seemed the only people who took his disappearance seriously were her husband's Libby's marriage had nailed some significant potholes in the past that ruined their alignment as a couple. Instead of supporting each other, Libby blamed her husband, who withdrew emotionally because he blamed himself and didn't know how to fix what had broken in their marriage.I loved the first line of this book. It made me smile because I've thought similar things when my husband was late coming home. He's much older than I am so my mind would often race with the what ifs, just like Libby's had. The premise of this story was unique and intriguing. At first when the trio search party headed out looking for Libby's husband, I was pulled in and coasting along. But because I'm not much of a camper I started to lose interest in that aspect of the story. But I hung in there and was glad that I did.Ruchti's use of snarky internal dialog through Libby's point of view helped keep the story real and interesting. I loved how the story shifted to a different perspective toward the end and how it also showed another side to the situation. I also enjoyed watching God work in these characters' hearts. The relationship between Libby, her father-in-law, and her best friend exemplified real love and commitment. I was deeply involved in their dilemma. Should they give up and turn back, or keep pressing on? Life is often like that and it paralleled this story in many surprising ways. They Almost Always Come Home is a great example of perseverance in the Christian life and how God will carry us through. Cynthia Ruchti was the perfect author to share this life-transforming tale.
This story rings true and although another reader mentioned slow spots, I didn't notice any. Sometimes a book needs a bit of breathing room so tense pacing with a few slower passages make a good read. I'm going to have to figure out how to get Cynthia to be my critique partner. I could learn a lot from her writing skills.Enough said about that. Sometimes when our friends are hit by ill health, death, or financial problems it can tear up a marriage. I was intrigued by how real Libby was. And how her mourning for loss made her unable to see the other persons suffering. I liked reading the story and seeing God work in her life as she searched for her husband . . . or his body. She needed closure and in her angst she wasn't sure which would be the more satisfying ending.If they ever make this into a movie it will be a tear producer. I look forward to Cynthia's next novel.
When I first received my copy of They Almost Always Come Home, I thought it sounded like a good story. When I first started reading it, I was intrigued, for a little while. I soon found the story slow and I started to get bored. I was actually on the verge of giving up and not finishing the book, but a little voice told me to keep going. I mean, I really did want to see how it would send, so I kept reading. I can honestly say that if I had quit reading the book, it would have been a huge mistake. The slow spot passed and I found myself turning pages and not wanting to put the book down.They Almost Always Come Home is a powerful story about love, forgiveness, healing, and Gods grace all the really good stuff! Greg and Libbys marriage was on the brink of disaster and Libbys faith was running on empty when Greg went missing in the wilderness of Canada. Libby gets past her anger at Greg for leaving her, or so she thinks, long enough to go looking for him. What she finds will change her life and her faith forever. This book really had me taking a hard look at my marriage and had me asking questions like, If my husband were to go missing, would his annoying little habits really seem all that annoying? and Would are problems really be that big? The answer is no. This story puts perspective on those little things that seem like big things at the time. I honestly think this book can do for marriages the same thing the movie Fireproof did for marriages. God has a prominent role in this story as He guides His children where He wants them to go.I thought for a short time that I would not be writing a favorable review for this book, but Im so glad I did not give up on it. The premise of this story is original and the message will have a huge impact that will stay with you. I highly recommend this book and if you come to the slow spot and feel the same way I felt, please, do not give up on it.