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They Almost Always Come Home
Abingdon Press / 2010 / Paperback
$11.99 (CBD Price)
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CBD Stock No: WW702389
When Libby's husband Greg fails to return from a two-week canoe trip to the Canadian wilderness, the authorities soon write off his disappearance as an unhappy husband's escape from an empty marriage and unrewarding career. Their marriage might have survived if their daughter Lacey hadn't died.and if Greg hadn't been responsible. Libby enlists the aid of her wilderness savvy father-in-law and her faith-walking best friend to help her search for clues to her husband's disappearance.if for no other reason than to free her to move on. What the trio discovers in the search upends Libby's presumptions about her husband and rearranges her faith.
Finalist - 2011 Carol Award and 2010 RT Book Reviews Reviewers' Choice Award
When Libbys husband Greg fails to return from a two-week canoe trip to the Canadian wilderness, the authorities soon write off his disappearance as an unhappy husbands escape from an empty marriage and unrewarding career. Their marriage might have survived if their daughter Lacey hadnt died and if Greg hadnt been responsible. Libby enlists the aid of her wilderness savvy father-in-law and her faith-walking best friend to help her search for clues to her husbands disappearance if for no other reason than to free her to move on. What the trio discovers in the search upends Libbys presumptions about her husband and rearranges her faith.
Cynthia Ruchti writes and produces the daily 15-minute radio broadcast, The Heartbeat of the Home, and is editor of the broadcast's Backyard Friends magazine. She served a two-year term as president of American Christian Fiction Writers and currently serves as ACFW's Professional Relations Liaison. In addition to writing novels, devotionals, and magazine articles, she speaks for women's events and writers' conferences. Cynthia and her plot-tweaking husband live in the heart of Wisconsin where she creates stories of Hope-that-glows-in-the-dark. Find Cynthia on the web at www.CynthiaRuchti.com.
Mystery, lost love, and adventure all dominate in Cynthia Ruchtis novel They Almost Always Come Home. Libbys marriage has been in trouble for several years, but she cant leave her husband if hes missing. Greg went on a canoe trip and was never heard from again. Libby and her best friend, along with Gregs dad, set out to retrace Gregs steps through the Canadian wilderness. But along the way, Libby finds more than she expected. On the one hand, she is overwhelmed by the outdoor beauty of Gods creation, with massive waterfalls, sparkling streams, golden sunsets, gliding eagles, and towering pine trees. On the other hand, the outdoor trek serves as a metaphor for the challenges of a marriage, wherein a wrong turn or a misread trail sign can lead to disaster.
The book is well written and dynamic. Through intensive dialogue and insertions of key back story episodes, readers can relate to the pain and conflict Libby and Greg have experienced. The characters must examine their commitment to each other, to God, and to those they love. The changes they experience during the story are believable, but not predictable. Ruchti combines aspects of every day life and outdoor adventure to draw the reader in. Because this novel shows both female and male perspectives, I would recommend it to all adults and older teens. Grace C. Yates, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com
In Ruchti's debut faith-based novel, Libby and Greg's marriage is sputtering in the wake of their daughter's death. Libby's thinking about leavinguntil she's faced with the prospect of becoming a widow when Greg fails to return from a solo trip to the Canadian wilderness. As Libby, her best friend Jen, and father-in-law Frank go after Greg to bring him back or learn his fate, Libby also learns about herself, family, and faith. It's a great premise, and Ruchti has enough energy to make the suspense last for just about the whole book, even as she unpacks the marriage troubles in the background and the character interplay among the searchers in the foreground. A lot of readers will like Libby, who is flawed enough to be humble and teachable; a few might find her brittle and defensive wit (rocks with bad toupees of lichen) a little much. Libby's friend Jen, however, is improbably saintly. Crisp dialogue propels the story forward unobtrusively. Ruchti shows imagination and promise. (May) Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.
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Author: Cynthia Ruchti
Located in: Central Wisconsin
Submitted: April 20, 2010
Tell us a little about yourself. I live in a perpetual state of wonder--both the pondering kind and the awe kind. My husband and I are planted in the north woods, near cranberry bogs, pine forests, deer habitat, and our three amazing kids and five grandchildren. I write and produce a daily radio broadcast called The Heartbeat of the Home (now in its 31st year), serve as president of the 2000-member American Christian Fiction Writers, and love to tell stories of Hope-that-glows-in-the-dark.
What was your motivation behind this project? Every book I write is motivated by a desire to tell the truth in story form. My husband almost didn't come home from a canoe trip to Canada a few years ago. The rescue plane reached him within minutes of what would have been his final breaths from a sudden, devastating illness. He returned home. But what if he hadn't? And what if I wasn't sure I wanted him back? My writer mind began to tease the embers of an idea, creating the character Libby who felt cheated because it appeared her husband found the escape hatch for their empty marriage before she did. It cost my imagination a good workout to picture Libby with different motivations and desires than mine, but it also cost me emotionally to plunge deep enough to write her story authentically.
What do you hope folks will gain from this project? God encouraged us to recognize hope sometimes hides, but it's always there. He taught us that even when life looks different than we thought it would, it's survivable. My prayer is that the men and women who read They Almost Always Come Home will draw courage for their own circumstances and allow for the possibilities that they are both stronger and more vulnerable than they knew, and that restoration is worth chasing.
How were you personally impacted by working on this project? In order for the words to come out right, I had to abandon myself to what the Lord wanted to do in my own heart. I felt Libby's weariness in her journey, bore some of her grief, ached with her, lost sleep over her pain. I'm still experiencing the impact as I take the lessons she discovered and apply them to my own life and marriage.
Anything else you'd like readers / listeners to know: Connecting with readers who find themselves in one of the characters or lose themselves in the story, who find a spark of hope or lose a long-held fear--what could bring more joy to an author's heart?
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