Novelist and Children's Author

Featured Book: Two Roads Home

Posted by on Aug 27, 2015 in Faith, Fiction | 75 comments

And the winner of Summer’s List by Anita Higman is:


Congratulations, Maryann!

And now for our featured book . . .


Nagging setbacks continue to challenge Grant and Audrey Whitman’s initiation into the world of inn keeping, but larger challenges brew when an occasional flirtation leads to big trouble for the Whitman’s son-in-law, Jesse.

Jesse Pennington’s friendly, outgoing personality has always served him well, especially in a career that has earned him and his wife Corinne a very comfortable lifestyle. But Corinne and Jesse are both restless–and for similar reasons, if only they could share those with each other. Instead, too many business trips and trumped up charges of harassment from a disgruntled co-worker threaten their marriage and possibly put their three precious daughters at risk. With their life in disarray, God is tugging at their hearts to pursue other dreams. Can Corinne and Jesse pick up the pieces of what was once a beautiful life before it crumbles beneath them?

An Interview with author Deborah Raney:

Finish this sentence. Inspirational fiction is . . . fiction that inspires readers to examine their own lives in light of the situations the novel’s characters are experiencing, and to come away feeling encouraged, enlightened, or even empowered in their real lives.

Tell us how you got the idea for Two Roads Home.

The idea for the whole series came when I was yakking with my friend Courtney Walsh at a conference. Throughout our evening, I’d told several family stories, and at one point she said, “Deb, you have so many fun family stories, you ought to write a book about a big extended family like yours! Or a series!” That got my wheels turning, and from there, I’ve just had to create a family for each of the five Whitman offspring. It’s been a blast!

What’s one of your favorite scenes in Two Roads Home?

There’s a scene where things get very crazy at the bed and breakfast late one night…one of those situations where eventually, as things go from bad to worse, all you can do is laugh. I laughed when I wrote it because I could so see something like that happening in my own family—especially if we were trying to run a B&B!

Are you anything like Corinne, your main character? If you could cast him/her in a movie, whom would you choose?

The truth is, I’m a little bit like all of my characters. 🙂 I really do try to write some characters who are very different from me, but since I must put myself in my characters’ shoes to write their scenes, eventually, they all have a little bit of me in them.

I think I’m most like Corinne, in that I was a stay-at-home mom, with all the wonderful and conflicting, and difficult, and glorious things that entails.

I could easily see Maggie Gyllenhaal in the role of Corinne. I love her ability to be girl-next-door casual one minute, then very glamorous the next.

Maggie GallenhaalDescribe Jesse Pennington. What actor would you hire to play him?

Kyle Chandler! I’ve had this guy in my head as my hero in several books. Sorry… He’s just so winsome! Drop-dead handsome, yet down-to-earth at the same time. And exactly how I pictured Jesse:

Kyle Chandler

What do you want readers to take away from this book/novel?

That dreams and purpose in life are so much more important than money and security! It’s a lesson I’ve had to learn in my own life in recent years—the hard way…as I tend to learn every important lesson. 🙁 But I’m so very glad I learned it before it was too late and I would have been full of regrets.

Do you have another book in the works? Tell us about it.

There are three more books in the Chicory Inn Novels series after this one. Five in all. Book 3, Another Way Home, releases in October and the new two in 2016, early 2017. But I just turned in Close to Home (Book 4) so only one left to write for me! I’m really going to miss this family once I write “the end” on that last book!

What was your favorite book as a child? Why?

I attended a two-room country schoolhouse, one of the last in Kansas. We had an incredible, but small, library and I’m sure I read every book on the shelves. But one I returned to over and over again was called The Village That Slept. It was the story of two young teens who survive a plane crash in Europe and care for a tiny infant survivor as they try to make their way out of the mountains to civilization.  When my childhood school closed down, I lost track of that book, and spent three decades searching for it—except I couldn’t remember the title or the author! Makes it difficult to find a book if you don’t know those two details. Long story short, I’d almost given up when I came across a reference to the book while I was researching a novel. (Turns out it was a translation from the French, and I’d been searching for a story set in the Alps, when actually the crash happened in the Pyrenées mountains.) The book was long out of print, but I was able to locate a used copy online. The dealer was asking $60 for it, but he cut his price in half, and then a dear writing friend sent me a $30 certificate to that site, so I got it free! When the book came in the mail some time later, it was like welcoming an old friend home!

The Village that Slept

If you could describe the perfect date with your spouse, where would you go?

This might sound funny, but since we moved to Wichita two years ago, Ken and I haven become huge fans of garage sales! We’ve always loved art museums and antique shops, but now we’ve added Goodwill and garage sale excursions to our repertoire! There’s just something about the thrill of the hunt! And then bragging about the huge bargains we bagged! We have a standing date every Thursday morning for donuts, coffee, and a couple hours of garage sale-ing.

Deborah is offering a copy of Two Roads Home (US only) to one of you. Please answer the question below in the comment box along with your e-mail address so that I can contact you if you’re the winner. The winner will be announced next Thursday, September 3rd, so you have a week to enter. Tell your friends!

Whether you’ve ever read a Deborah Raney novel or not, which one of her book covers makes you want to read the book the most? (Double click to enlarge)

Deborah Raney books

About the author:

Deborah Raney’s thirty books have garnered multiple industry awards, including the RITA, the Carol, the HOLT Medallion, National Readers’ Choice Award, and Silver Angel from Excellence in Media, and have three times been Christy Award finalists. Her first novel, A Vow to Cherish, which shed light on the ravages of Alzheimer’s disease and inspired the highly acclaimed World Wide Pictures film of the same title, continues to be a tool for Alzheimer’s families and caregivers. Deborah is on faculty for several national writers’ conferences, and serves on the executive board of the 2,700-member American Christian Fiction Writers organization. She and her husband, Ken Raney, recently traded small-town life in Kansas—the setting of many of Deb’s novels—for life in the (relatively) big city of Wichita. They have four children and five precious grandchildren (plus two on the way!) who all live much too far away. Visit Deb at


Purchase Links:


Christian Book Distributors

Connect with Deborah through these links:




Join the conversation and post a comment.

  1. Sherry Kyle

    The winner of Deborah Raney’s book, Two Roads Home, is Virginia Carr. Congratulations, Virginia!

  2. Julie McDonough

    I like Because of the Rain the Best, but they are all engaging. Thank-you for the giveaway.

  3. Deborah Raney

    I’ve loved reading all your comments, and have a secret to share: my husband, Ken Raney, designed the cover for Because of the Rain. I think it is my all-time favorite cover (though A Nest of Sparrows is one I really, really loved the minute I saw it. (It’s hard to tell in a small photo, but there are three little kids (characters in my story) playing in that golden field on the cover.

    Thanks again for sharing, and I’m eager to see who I’ll be mailing a book to!

  4. Laura Bennet

    Face of the Earth, which I did read. The title was intriguing and the cover picture made me wonder what happened to the characters. The book came recommended 🙂

  5. Caryl Kane

    I love the cover of Because of the Rain…. The imagery of being in the rain is so beautiful and symbolic. Rain is so refreshing and cleansing. I have to read this one! 🙂

  6. Becky I.

    The cover of, Another Way Home, really appeals to me, although all of them are really good! Both the title and the cover intrigue me, the part about, another way….

    Thanks for the interesting interview and opportunity to win.

  7. Jacqueline Robertson

    Winter Brides

  8. kim amundsen

    Silver Bells I love story that center around christmas.

  9. Edie

    Because Rain

  10. Ann Badder

    Two Roads Home

  11. Charlotte

    Silver Bells is my favorite cover.

  12. Anne Rightler

    The Face of the Earth and A Nest of Sparrows. I like the Autumn colors I guess. Autumn is probably my favorite time of year. Really they all look quite inviting!

  13. Tanya Behnke

    I would choose a nest of sparrows because I love open spaces where you can look out and see. I am an outdoor gal anyway so it drew me to look in the distance to see what is there, out there waiting. I have read many of deb’s books through the years….loved them all!

  14. Lanna Webb

    I would pick up Two Roads Home because I want to sit in one of those chairs and soak up the sun & enjoy God’s gift of nature! The beauty of trees have always drawn me.

  15. Delynn

    Winter Brides is the one that jumps out at me!

  16. Pam Kraus

    A Nest of Sparrows

  17. Karen Scholten

    I love the cover of Home to Chicory Lane…beautiful setting, beautiful yard…country setting.
    Reminds me of peacefulness.

  18. Linda D. McFarland

    Silver Bells with the Chicory series a close second. Book covers do make a difference in the selection of a book….has a way of drawing you in. Thanks for the opportunity to win!

  19. Virginia Carr

    Silver Bells has my vote.

  20. Janetta

    January Bride. Love your books, my friend.

  21. Deanna S

    I have read one.. I think I’d pick up Silver Bells because of the cover 🙂

  22. sharon Miller

    BECAUSE OF THE RAIN is my favorite as I love the red in the umbrella and in the cover elsewhere. I wonder where she is going, so dressed up, in the rain; who she is meeting; is red her favorite color?; does she live on a plantation with that tunnel of trees, etc.

  23. Jane Squires

    Because of the rain draws my attention. And I have read her books

  24. Joan Arning

    Home to Chicory Lane is probably the most appealing but I find most of them attractive!

    • Sherry Kyle

      The cover of a book is usually what draws me first, unless I know the author. 🙂 Deborah Raney is one of those authors that I read her books no matter what!

  25. Karen Johnson

    Because of the Rain. Rain is so peaceful and I like the colors!

  26. Charlyn

    January Bride…I’m a sucker for lace and flowers and my daughter just got engaged!

  27. Linda Rainey

    Beneath a Southern Sky and Deborah Raney is an author on my TBR list.

  28. Connie Price

    I am currently reading Beneath a Southern Sky. I would pick Silver Bells-sounds and looks like a Christmas book,which I love! Speaking of Kyle Chandler-did you see him a ‘few years ‘back in a TV program called Homefront? WWII story.

  29. Tonya Robinette

    I love the covers for the Chicory Inn series. They are so inviting and peaceful. They make me want to get away from the real world and just relax with the stories.

  30. Bonnie olive

    I’ve loved every book I’ve read . I like Because of the Rain book cover.
    Hard to chose .

  31. Diane Blaser

    I love the covers of the new series, especially Home To Chicory Lane. I really enjoy a series because of the much longer glimpse I get into,a family and many of its’ members. Family dynamics are endlessly entertaining and can teach us so much about ourselves! I love Maggie and Kyle as actors and will be sure toke them in mind as I read your series Deborah. I really enjoyed learning a little more about you and your books!

  32. Stella Potts

    I have already read Southern Storm and loved it (the whole series actually). The most tempting cover on these books is Because of the Rain.

  33. Stacey L. Lacik

    Because of the Rain, probably because I love walking in the rain. It just looks like a book I would want to read.

  34. Sharon Timmer

    Beneath a Southern Sky is the first one that drew me in! I loved her novel Silver Bells & several others are on my TBR lists for 2015 & 2016!! Maybe even 2017!!

  35. Deborah Throgmartin

    I like the cover of Because of the Rain. It looks so peaceful even though it’s raining.

  36. Teresa Sheroke

    I loved reading this interview! I agree, Kyle Chandler is not hard on the eyes!! Excellent choices for both characters if there were a movie! Ok I really like Home to Chicory Lane cover. It just draws me!

  37. Jeanne Monson

    Beneath A Southern Sky

  38. peggy clayton

    I have read a few of her books and love them. The cover that i like is Because Rain it reminds me of walking in the rain which i love the rain! Hope to win this one. thank you for a great interview and such good questions i like the picks of who she would want to play and the people she picked.