Thursday, June 10, 2010

They Almost Always come Home by Cynthia Ruchti

Read to the end of this post there is a giveaway.

(Wausau, WI) – At the foundation of each relationship resides the need to know love can survive even when feelings fade. In Cynthia Ruchti’s debut novel, They Almost Always Come Home, readers feel the desperation of this foundational yearning in a marriage clearly pulling loose from its moorings. Compounded by other issues—an unrewarding career and mismatched dreams—it’s enough to drive a man into the arms of the Canadian wilderness. When Greg Holden doesn’t return home from a wilderness canoe trip, his wife Libby wrestles with survivor guilt, a new layer of grief, and the belief that she was supposed to know how to fix her marriage. She planned to leave him—but how can she leave a man who’s no longer there? He was supposed to go fishing, not missing.

Libby has to find him before she can discover how their marriage ends. She plunges into the wilderness on an adventurous and risky manhunt, unsure what she will do if she finds him…or if she doesn’t. She expects to meet hardship, discomfort, and danger in the wilderness. She doesn’t expect to face the stark reality of her spiritual longing and a faint, but steady pulse that promises hope for reviving her marriage. If Greg’s still alive.

They Almost Always Come Home provides a glimpse into common, however uncomfortable, marital conflicts. Cynthia weaves a page-turning story, suspense building scene by scene. Her characters mirror ordinary people, living real-to-life situations, allowing readers to relate and sort through a myriad of emotions and life decisions. If fiction can contain adventure, riveting self-awareness, and romance all between the same covers, this is the book!

My Review:
I loved this book. I say two thumbs up for Ruchti's first novel. It kept me wanting to know more; definitely a page turner, attention keeper. Loved the way Ruchti tooks the reader from Libby's view of things to Greg's. The transitions were smooth and not choppy. However, most of the book is written from Libby's perspective. I'd say the theme of the book was perseverance. I can't wait to read more of Rachti's books.

1. How would you describe your book?

The tagline for the book is “She’d leave her husband…if she could find him.”
When Libby’s husband Greg doesn’t return from a two-week canoe trip to the Canadian wilderness, the authorities write off his disappearance as an unhappy husband’s escape from an oatmeal marriage and mind-numbing 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. What the trio discovers in the wilderness search upends Libby’s assumptions about her husband and rearranges her faith.

It’s my prayer that this fictional adventure story and emotional journey will reveal its own hope-laden clues for those struggling to survive or longing to exit what they believe are uninspiring marriages. How can a woman survive a season or a lifetime when she finds it difficult to like the man she loves?

2. How were you different as a writer and as a person when you finished writing They Almost Always Come Home?

This book changed me in a profound way. It forced me to take a more honest look at myself and my reactions to crises so I could write Libby’s character with authenticity. Libby is a composite of many women. I haven’t experienced what she did, but I identify with some of her struggles and longings, as I hope my readers will. I see my friends in her eyes and know that her tears aren’t hers alone. Her shining moments feed my courage. Libby speaks for me and for many others when she discovers that she is stronger than she realized and weaker than she wanted to admit.
Writing her story was a journey for the author as much as for the character.

3. What did you feel the tug on your heart to become a writer?

My journey toward a lifetime of writing began by reading books that stirred me, changed me, convinced me that imagination is a gift from an imaginative Creator. As a child, I read when I should have been sleeping…and still do. I couldn’t wait for the BookMobile (library on wheels) to pull up in front of the post office in our small town and open its arms to me. Somewhere between the pages of a book, my heart warmed to the idea that one day I too might tell stories that made readers stay up past their bedtimes.

4. What books line your bookshelves?

My bookshelves—don’t ask how many!—hold a wide variety of genres. The collection expands faster than a good yeast dough. I’m a mood reader, grabbing a light comedy one day and a literarily rich work the next. Although I appreciate well-written nonfiction, I gravitate toward an emotionally engaging contemporary women’s fiction story.

Cynthia Ruchti writes stories of “hope that glows in the dark.” She writes and produces The Heartbeat of the Home, a syndicated drama/devotional radio broadcast, and is editor for the ministry’s Backyard Friends magazine. She also serves as current president of American Christian Fiction Writers. Cynthia married her childhood sweetheart, who tells his own tales of wilderness adventures.

Something Extra From the Author's Heart

Ten years ago, my husband almost didn’t come home. His canoe adventure with our son Matt soured on Day Two when Bill grew violently ill from what we presume was either pancreatitis or a gall bladder attack. He’s an insulin-dependent diabetic, so any grave illness is a threat. One in the middle of the Canadian wilderness is morgue material.

With no satellite phone with which to call for help, Matt took turns caring for his father and watching the shore for other canoeists happening past their hastily constructed campsite. The few other canoes were headed deeper into the remote areas of the park, not on their way out. None had a satellite phone. And none of them were doctors.

As my husband grew sicker, his diabetes went nuclear. He couldn’t eat, yet needed insulin because his liver thought it should help out by dumping vast quantities of sugar into his system. Even in a hospital setting, the situation would have been difficult to control, and the nearest hospital was light years away across vast stretches of water and woodland, through peopleless, roadless wilderness.

Our son stretched a yellow tarp across the rocks on shore and wrote S.O.S. with charcoal from a dead fire. He scratched out countless notes on pieces of notebook paper torn from their trip journal:

Send rescue! My dad is deathly ill.

Read the rest of the story at the KCWC BLOG

Blog Tour Giveaway Includes:
North Pak 20 inch cinch sack (lime)
Day Runner journal
Canoe Brand wild rice
Canada's brand blueberry jam
Coleman 60-piece mini
first aid kit
Wood canoe/paddle shelf ornament
Six original photography notecards from video trailer
"Hope" hanging ornament
Mini Coleman "lantern" prayer reminder

One commenter's name will go into the drawing for the above prize. Please leave me a comment telling me if you like to go camping? what is your favorite part of camping? Where do you like to go? Favorite anything about camping I don't care, a tip something. Drawing will be held on June 18th. Be sure to leave a way of contact. Please US residents only.

A copy of this book was provided for this review by KCWC.

This blog tour is through:



Linda said...

A very interesting book, as it could have happened to my own hubby and son when they went to BWCA. Please enter me in your giveaway. Thanks.

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Amanda said...

My husband and I like to take our kids "camping" in the back yard. We put up a tent with an air mattress and sleeping bags inside. We roast hot dogs and make smores. They love it. When they get older, we will try to actually go camping away from home.

chelleyreads said...

i've never heard of this book so thanks for the review! :)

Virginia C said...

is is such a powerful story line! What would any of us do in the same situation? How would we cope? Add to that the real life story of a father and son facing a life or death situation, and it all packs an emotional wallop.

My mom and I lived together for almost 50 years. For a good many of those years, we had five rescue dogs that went almost everywhere we went by car! Every once in a while we would load up our station wagon and find a place to camp overnight. It's not easy to camp with five dogs, but the joy felt by the dogs made it most worthwhile!

US Resident, Follower, Subscriber

gcwhiskas at aol dot com

Darth Mama said...

We enjoy camping (but the "easy" camping, at a campground with showers and bathrooms!) and my son's favorite part is helping to build the campfire. jfsarma at gmail dot com

karenk said...

i enjoy camping...w/ a few modern day amenities :)

kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Edna said...

I like to go camping sometimes, not often, too much comfort at home, but when I do go I love to go to Hunting Island, SC, it is on the beach and there is a light on the property and I love light houses, also that is the only place I have ever found a star fish shell.

Please enter me


debbie said...

I would love to read the book. It sounds really good.
For a camping tip, I would recommend getting cots for adults to sleep on. You will get a better nights sleep that way.
One fun cooking idea is to get cast iron pie irons. You can make "pies" over a campfire. You butter the outsides of the bread,place the bottom slice in the open pie iron. Put your favorite flavor of pie filling in it, don't be stingy, but not too much you don't want it to leak out. Place another piece of bread, with the buttered side facing up on top. Close the pie tin, making sure you get a good seal. You hold it over the fire until each side is golden.
This is a fun activity for camping.

Esther Y.M. said...

I have never been camping but I do love the beach though.

I would love to win a copy , please enter me.


adge said...

I liked to go camping when I was younger. I always liked how close you could be to nature without all of the electronic devices. gasweetheart211[at]netscape[dot]net

Jen said...

The book sounds really good! Thank you for the review.

Our family goes camping almost every weekend during the summer months. We keep our camper at a Christian camp ground. It a great way to create family memories.

Cynthia Ruchti said...

Thank you everyone for your comments and enthusiasm! I hope to meet you in the pages of the book!

Samanta/Sammy said...

I enjoy camping,I love seeing the stars by night, away from the city, polution, they appear brighter ... and is easier to see them ...

gahome2mom said...

I know camping would be loads of fun for our family but I am "afraid" someone would want to do harm to us. I am not afraid of the wildlife or nature. I welcome it. The woods aren't like they used to be. Thank you.