They Almost Always Come Home  -     By: Cynthia Ruchti
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They Almost Always Come Home

Abingdon Press / 2010 / Paperback

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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.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 320
Vendor: Abingdon Press
Publication Date: 2010
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 1426702388
ISBN-13: 9781426702389
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

She would leave her husband . . . if she could find him.

Author Bio

Author and speaker Cynthia Ruchti tells stories of hope-that-glows-in-the-dark, drawing from 33 years of experience writing and producing a 15-minute drama/devotional radio broadcast. Shes the author of nine books that have received recognition from several awards programs including RT Reviewers Choice, Christian Retailings Best, Family Fiction Readers Choice, ACFW Carol Awards, the Selah Awards, the Golden Scroll Awards, and ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year program. She is the author of They Almost Always Come Home, When the Morning Glory Blooms, Ragged Hope, and All My Belongings. Cynthia serves as the Professional Relations Liaison for American Christian Fiction Writers. Visit her online at CynthiaRuchti.com.

ChristianBookPreviews.com

Mystery, lost love, and adventure all dominate in Cynthia Ruchti’s novel They Almost Always Come Home. Libby’s marriage has been in trouble for several years, but she can’t leave her husband if he’s missing. Greg went on a canoe trip and was never heard from again. Libby and her best friend, along with Greg’s dad, set out to retrace Greg’s 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 God’s 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

Publisher's Weekly

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 leaving—until 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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  1. Wisconsin
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: Female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    From planning his funeral to wanting him back
    April 19, 2013
    Rose Blue
    Wisconsin
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: Female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    She would leave her husband_if she could find him.

    When Greg fails to return from a Canadian canoe trip, Libby is annoyed when a police officer questions the state of their marriage. Did Greg want to disappear? No fair. She should be the one leaving him. She's having a hard time liking the man she's supposed to love.

    With her father-in-law and her best friend, she plans to retrace Greg's journey. While they load up with canoes, cook stove, food, sleeping bags, they discover he didn't take his fishing equipment. That's ominous.

    Libby also brings along the trip journeys found in Greg's office. She reads of his confusion on how to reach her. She'd thought he hadn't felt grief at their daughter's death three years ago.

    While fishing for their dinner in the beautiful wilderness scenery, she has an epiphany. She realizes what's missing from that dust-free spot on his office shelf: his camera. He hadn't planned on fishing. He went to take pictures. Greg's stifled in his grocery store job. She didn't want him to leave his secure job, not with a family to support.

    By the time they run out of time and must return home, Libby wants Greg back.

    I love the transition from indifferent wife to loving wife who recognizes she hadn't been meeting his needs.
  2. 4 Stars Out Of 5
    very touching
    August 18, 2012
    bookworm
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    This review was written for They Almost Always Come Home - eBook.
    Enough life application features to keep your interest. Lots of good reading (42 chapters)
  3. Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    August 17, 2012
    Fran
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This review was written for They Almost Always Come Home - eBook.
    Enjoyed book especially ease of reading on my ipad
  4. Virginia
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    Struggle through the Canadian woods/relationships
    July 24, 2012
    Barb
    Virginia
    Age: Over 65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 4
    This review was written for They Almost Always Come Home - eBook.
    The outstanding portrayal of the beauty of God's creation in the Canadian woods was incredible in this book. The author managed to literally take us on the searching/rescue trek with her as she desperately looks for her missing husband.

    Our oldest daughter lost a child at eight years of age and that death has scarred their family in ways we did not understand for years. The same is true in this novel and it is a tale told very well.

    I have always enjoyed light humor in novels and in conversation. A person, however, who consistently inserts comical twists in a conversation can turn the intent of the exchange into a verbal sparring that dilutes the original desire to communicate. I felt that way as I began this book--every page has clever, sometimes sarcastic, humor inserted into nearly ever passage.
  5. 5 Stars Out Of 5
    July 5, 2012
    suzyQ
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This review was written for They Almost Always Come Home - eBook.
    It's been a long time since I read I book that I couldn't put down.
Displaying items 1-5 of 27
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Author/Artist Review

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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