Book Review: Restoring Christmas by Cynthia Ruchti

December 12, 2016 Christian, Christmas, contemporary, Cynthia Ruchti, romance 14

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about the book

Alexis Blake has one chance to land her own show on the Home Project Network and nothing, not an uncooperative client, a job site without indoor plumbing, or a challenging videographer, is going to stand in her way.

Elsie, at seventy-plus, is far from the ideal client, but she knows exactly what she wants her fieldstone house to look like, and no designer can tell her otherwise.

Gabe Langley, the man with the camera, is caught in the middle and it is his wisdom and warmth that just may be the bridge that will bring these two women together.

Can they restore more than just a house and bring about special, almost lost forever Christmas memories?

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GENRE: Inspirational Contemporary Fiction
PUBLISHER: Worthy Inspired
RELEASE DATE: October 18, 2016
PAGES: 272

“Hope isn’t always shiny, is it?”

restoring-christmas-book-reviewBefore I gush about how much I love this latest book from Cynthia Ruchti (because I do and so I shall), I have to first mention GABE. Oh my heart. My book boyfriend collection has a new addition. Gabe Langley is sweet and hilarious and charming in that boyish sort of way but boy does some great wisdom come out when he decides to be serious.  From their meet-cute to their daily interactions to the moment when romance becomes more than a possibility, Gabe and Alexis need each other (even when Alexis would argue otherwise) and watching them fall in love is both heartwarming and grin-inducing. And the way he keeps brushing his thumb across his cheek after she kisses him there is so adorably swoonworthy 😀

Ok… now the actual gushing may begin.

Every book I read by Cynthia Ruchti becomes a favorite. Each word is perfectly placed, each emotion aptly timed, each character vividly drawn, and each truth tenderly presented.  Never sappy, Ruchti’s stories are full of wry humor and sweet reminders of grace. These books, these characters, go soul-deep and take up permanent residence.

restoring-christmas-soul-memeIn Restoring Christmas, we get a front row seat as Alexis attempts to restore an old house as part of a reality TV competition (think HGTV). Much to her chagrin, she finds herself at the mercy of an unexpected cameraman, unplanned lodging, and an uncooperative home owner. And somewhere along the way – through the ups and downs of home restoration and TV show filming – her work with Gabe on Elsie’s house becomes more about restoring their souls than the wood or paint.

The beauty of the Christmas dinner scene is one of the most touching Christmasy scenes I’ve read, and it brought treasured memories to mind of singing “Silent Night” with our international students – each in their own language, us in English, all singing at once. The tears flowed through this whole scene, for many reasons, and it’s the perfect way to show off the restoration – of the house and of the hearts of those connected to it.

Bottom Line: If you’re a fan of home restoration shows, then you’ll love Restoring Christmas. More than just a sweet romance or an uplifting story worthy of the Hallmark channel (though it would be the perfect choice for their Christmas lineup!), Cynthia Ruchti’s latest takes a grace-filled look at grief, insecurity, addiction, abuse, loneliness, and dementia. With her exquisite talent, she offers us a delightful tale that will warm your heart – and maybe even restore it too 🙂 Additionally, the hardcover is just lovely and makes a great addition to your bookshelf or coffee table.

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 5 stars / Fantastic!

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about the author

Cynthia Ruchti tells stories hemmed in Hope through her novels and novellas, speaking for women’s events and retreats, writers’ events, nonfiction books, and devotionals, drawing from 33 years writing and producing an on-air radio broadcast. Her books have been recognized by RT Reviewers’ Choice, Selah Awards, Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence, CR’s BEST Awards, Carol Award honors, Family Fiction Readers’ Choice Award, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year honors and others. She has a total of 18 books on the shelves, with more contracted. She and her plot-tweaking husband live in the heart of Wisconsin, not far from their three children and five grandchildren.

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Other Books by Cynthia Ruchti

What about you? Have you ever tried to restore anything? Tell me your restoration story!

Carrie

14 Responses to “Book Review: Restoring Christmas by Cynthia Ruchti”

  1. carylkane

    Beautiful review, Carrie! I love Cynthia’s stories. Restoring Christmas is on my wish list.

    • Carrie

      thank you, Caryl! It’s such a beautiful book, inside and out – much like Cynthia 🙂

  2. Jen

    Oh my word. Home restorations? Deep characters who find deeper grace? Sold. I must read this book!

  3. Katie Donovan

    Loved this book! About to do my review, but maybe I should just copy and paste yours! Lol!

    Restoration is perhaps not my thing. Our lounge room walls have been waiting for two years now to be painted after some restoration work…

  4. Winnie Thomas

    I loved this book! The hardback is just beautiful, with or without the paper jacket!.And the story is wonderful!

    I would love to be able to restore things, in theory, but I’m not good at it in real life. I love antiques and vintage things, but I think the dings and flaws and worn spots add to the history and beauty of the article.

  5. Laura

    Ack! I can’t get the epilogue link to work properly on my iPad!
    Carrie, any suggestions? Thx.

    • Carrie

      oh no! It worked on my phone…. Let me check into this and i’ll update you soon!

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