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Publisher's Summary

From the author of The Abortionist's Daughter, a gripping new novel about a rafting trip through the Grand Canyon that changes the lives of everyone on board.Meet Peter, 27, single, and looking for a quick hookup; Evelyn, a 50-year-old Harvard professor; and Ruth and Lloyd, river veterans in their 70s. There's Mitchell, an overeager history buff with no qualms about upstaging the guides with his knowledge. There's Jill from Salt Lake City, wanting desperately to spark some sense of adventure in her staid Mormon family. And there's 17-year-old Amy, so woefully overweight that she can barely fit into a pup tent, let alone into a life jacket. Guiding them all is JT Maroney, who loves the river with all his heart and who, having made 124 previous trips down the Colorado, thinks he has seen everything. But on their first night, a stray dog wanders into their campsite, upsetting the tentative equilibrium of this makeshift family.Over the next 13 days, as various decisions are second-guessed and sometimes regretted, both passengers and guides find that sometimes the most daunting adventures on a Colorado River trip have nothing to do with white-water rapids, and everything to do with reconfiguring the rocky canyons of the heart.
©2009 Elisabeth Hyde; (P)2009 Random House
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Critic Reviews

"An astute, engrossing, character-driven affair.... The novel succeeds as both a study of strangers striving toward a common goal and as a suspenseful drama filled with angst and humanity. Hyde outshines herself with this wild ride." (Publishers Weekly)
"Hyde applies her flair for creating fully realized characters and adds a dash of invigorating peril set in a striking landscape.... A thoughtful portrait of humanity at odds with nature." (Kirkus Reviews)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Pamela Harvey on 07-23-09

Great! A Rolicking Ride.

Loved this account of multiple families on a rafting trip. Gifted writer mixes up all the personal back stories, complex family sagas, and lives of the river guides, and manages to avoid shallow soap opera.
Made me want to go on another river trip! All thumbs up!

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars
By Roy on 07-28-09

Good Summer Diversion

I generally avoid fiction, but picked up "In the Heart of the Canyon" as a change of pace this summer. Essentially, it is the story of JT Maroney who acts as a guide on a rafting trip through the Grand Canyon and how each person changes as a result of the experience.

The prose is excellent and the story will keep the casual reader's interst. The reading is just fine. It will not deepen one's understanding of the human condition, however. It is a "summer at the beach book" and better than many in that genre.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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