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When I Found You Paperback – April 23, 2013

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Catherine Ryan Hyde is the author of several highly acclaimed novels including Pay it Forward, which was made into a film starring Kevin Spacey and Helen Hunt. In 2007 her novel Love in the Present Tense was selected for the Richard & Judy Book Club. Catherine lives in Cambia, California. --This text refers to the Digital edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 410 pages
  • Publisher: Lake Union Publishing (April 23, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 161109979X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1611099799
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7,140 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,902 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author


An avid hiker, traveler, equestrian, and amateur photographer, she has just released her first book of photos, 365 DAYS OF GRATITUDE: PHOTOS FROM A BEAUTIFUL WORLD.

She is co-author, with publishing industry blogger Anne R. Allen, of HOW TO BE A WRITER IN THE E-AGE: A SELF-HELP GUIDE.

Her best-known novel, PAY IT FORWARD, was adapted into a major motion picture, chosen by the American Library Association for its Best Books for Young Adults list, and translated into more than 23 languages for distribution in over 30 countries. The paperback was released in October 2000 by Pocket Books and quickly became a national bestseller. Simon & Schuster released PAY IT FORWARD: YOUNG READERS' EDITION in August of '14. It is suitable for kids as young as eight. A special Fifteenth Anniversary Edition of the original PAY IT FORWARD was released in December of '14

LOVE IN THE PRESENT TENSE enjoyed bestseller status in the UK, where it broke the top ten, spent five weeks on the bestseller lists, was reviewed on a major TV book club, and shortlisted for a Best Read of the Year award at the British Book Awards. Both BECOMING CHLOE and JUMPSTART THE WORLD were included on the ALA's Rainbow List, and JUMPSTART THE WORLD was a finalist for two Lambda Literary Awards. WHERE WE BELONG won two Rainbow Awards in 2013.

New Kindle editions of her backlist titles FUNERALS FOR HORSES, EARTHQUAKE WEATHER AND OTHER STORIES, ELECTRIC GOD, and WALTER'S PURPLE HEART are now available. Also available is THE LONG, STEEP PATH: EVERYDAY INSPIRATION FROM THE AUTHOR OF PAY IT FORWARD, her first book-length creative nonfiction.

More than 50 of her short stories have been published in The Antioch Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, The Virginia Quarterly Review, Ploughshares, Glimmer Train and many other journals, and in the anthologies Santa Barbara Stories and California Shorts and the bestselling anthology Dog is my Co-Pilot. Her stories have been honored in the Raymond Carver Short Story Contest and the Tobias Wolff Award and nominated for Best American Short Stories, the O'Henry Award, and the Pushcart Prize. Three have been cited in Best American Short Stories.

She is founder and former president (2000-2009) of the Pay It Forward Foundation, and still serves on its board of directors. As a professional public speaker she has addressed the National Conference on Education, twice spoken at Cornell University, met with Americorps members at the White House and shared a dais with Bill Clinton.

For more information, please visit the author at

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

506 of 524 people found the following review helpful By Marian Volkman on August 28, 2010
Format: Paperback
Catherine Ryan Hyde is a powerful talent. I can't believe I'd never heard of her. Of course I saw and loved Pay It Forward, but never thought to look to see who wrote the original book and what else she might have written.
So glad I picked up When I Found You from a friend in England - thank you, Frances! It is well out of the common run of books and leaves me with the clear intention to read everything Ms. Hyde has written.
This is the story of Nathan, a man of quiet wisdom, and the baby he finds in the woods, abandoned and close to death. It's a story of tragic human errors redeemed by steadfast love and intention. This is a book you will think about for a long time.
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319 of 332 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on March 11, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Nathan doesn't live a quiet life of desperation, but a quiet life of steadiness, duty and monotony. Living safely inside the bounds of a life he very carefully crafted, Nathan seems content even with the occasional pangs of loneliness he feels. His childless, 29 year marriage has drifted into a comfortable friendship. He seems to have no true passion for his job as an accountant. His joy is limited to early morning duck hunts with his loyal dog, whom his wife doesn't allow into the house.

Nathan's seemingly content life is challenged when his dog finds a newborn baby in the woods. Suddenly, Nathan finds his heart opening to the helpless infant. He wants to adopt the child -- a prospect his wife scoffs at -- and believes that fate conspired to bring him into the boy's life. When it turns out that the child has a grandmother who will take him in, Nathan is disappointed but determined to stay in the boy's life, even as an invisible guardian who sends holiday presents. He asks that the grandmother not forget him and that she tells the child about "the man in the woods".

The author writes the part of Gamma (Grandma) very believably. She's tough and stern, but edged with caring. She does what she thinks is best for young Nat, which is lie to him. Later, when he learns the truth he becomes an angry young man.

The grandmother loses control over Nat and remembers Nathan's insistence that he would always be there for the child. She shows up at Nathan's doorstep with the young man in tow and Nathan readily agrees to take him in.

The series of events that follow are really too good to spoil in a review, but the author takes no shortcuts with this story. She follows through with realistically difficult but tender years, well into Nat's adulthood.
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271 of 285 people found the following review helpful By joy on February 13, 2012
Format: Paperback
I consider myself a slow reader but i finished this compelling, literary book in a day and half. If our power hadn't gone out I would have read it in one day.
This book was full of discovery, every turn a surprise. Ms Ryan Hyde is a master of story, Pulling the reader towards the next chapter and then the next. Very touching all the way through.
My copy came to me as a gift, I know that i shall pay it forward and gift this book to my loved ones. Thank you to the author and YES it is Brilliant. A 5 star read.
Joy, USA
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166 of 179 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 13, 2012
Format: Paperback
Catherine Ryan Hyde's The Day I Found You is a beautiful book.

I love her books to begin with, and find this one exceptional. It's a subtle story of passion and purpose, love and tension, trust and distrust, and perhaps above all the importance of honesty. A baby found by a hunter lives with his grandmother for years, and then with the hunter. Coming-of-age issues unravel, but are not the key to Hyde's exploration of passion, love, trust, and honesty, the bonds of friendship and of service. It is a marvelously written, compelling story, masterfully plotted and paced.

It is a keeper, one you will not regret reading.
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52 of 53 people found the following review helpful By jones22 on March 11, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
When I Found You was the first book I've ever read by Catherine Ryan Hyde but won't be the last! A brilliant, well crafted masterpiece, When I Found You reveals a true honesty not found in many books. The relationship between characters Nathan and Nat is unlike anything previously imaginable. It's a great story of how one man refuses to wash his hands of "the boy he finds in the woods" and the relationships that come about because of it.
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90 of 97 people found the following review helpful By Carol M on May 31, 2013
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
One morning, hunter Nathan finds an abandoned infant boy in the woods. He wants to adopt the baby, but the baby's grandmother steps forward to take him in. Fifteen years later, the now-teenager has become difficult and the grandmother asks Nathan to raise the young man (Nat).

I did not like this book as much as I'd hoped. The Nathan character is far too "good" to seem like a real person. He shows very little emotion, just steadfastly goes about supporting Nat emotionally and financially, no matter what Nat throws at him. He's an admirable character, but his lack of frustration, regret or even conflicting emotions in this situation makes him an unrealistic character. And there is very little to explain his motivation to behave this way, other than a last-pages supposition by a minor character.

Nat's character is stronger. Even though he is less admirable, his emotions at least make him real.

Much of this book takes place in boxing gyms or boxing rings. That may add appeal for some readers; it didn't for me.
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