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  Library Journal Review

Julia puts her heart into aiding troubled children, so she's devastated when she's forced to give up her practice. Then she connects with a mute little girl who's been abandoned-and the doctor fighting to protect her. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

  Booklist Review

Although a judge rules in her favor, child psychiatrist Dr. Julia Cates is found guilty of incompetence in the press. Her entire life has centered on her exclusive practice, and now all her patients have abandoned her. Salvation comes unexpectedly at the behest of her estranged sister, Ellie, the chief of police in their hometown of Rain Valley, Washington. Julia never wanted to go back to their small logging town, where she was the scrawny bookworm and Ellie was the homecoming queen, but now, even though they refuse to admit it, the sisters need each other as they try to save a young girl found in a forest in the company of a wolf. She behaves like an animal and doesn't speak. Julia works hard to break the mute silence of the mysterious little girl; Ellie tries to find out where she belongs; and both of them defend the girl they decide to call Alice against those who would exploit her. Through helping this young lost soul, Julia and Ellie learn a lot about themselves and about their relationships in one of this perennially best-selling writer's most compelling and riveting novels to date. Magic Hour0 will enhance Hannah's popularity and affirm her dominance in women's fiction. --Patty Engelmann Copyright 2005 Booklist

  Kirkus Review

Sisters work together to solve a child-abandonment case. Ellie and Julia Cates have never been close. Julia is shy and brainy; Ellie gets by on charm and looks. Their differences must be tossed aside when a traumatized young girl wanders in from the forest into their hometown in Washington. The sisters' professional skills are put to the test. Julia is a world-renowned child psychologist who has lost her edge. She is reeling from a case that went publicly sour. Though she was cleared of all wrongdoing, Julia's name was tarnished, forcing her to shutter her Beverly Hills practice. Ellie Barton is the local police chief in Rain Valley, who's never faced a tougher case. This is her chance to prove she is more than just a fading homecoming queen, but a scarcity of clues and a reluctant victim make locating the girl's parents nearly impossible. Ellie places an SOS call to her sister; she needs an expert to rehabilitate this wild-child who has been living outside of civilization for years. Confronted with her professional demons, Julia once again has the opportunity to display her talents and salvage her reputation. Hannah (The Things We Do for Love, 2004, etc.) is at her best when writing from the girl's perspective. The feral wolf-child keeps the reader interested long after the other, transparent characters have grown tiresome. Hannah's torturously over-written romance passages are stale, but there are surprises in store as the sisters set about unearthing Alice's past and creating a home for her. Wacky plot keeps the pages turning and enduring schmaltzy romantic sequences. Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Summary
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Nightingale and The Great Alone comes an incandescent story about the resilience of the human spirit, the triumph of hope, and the meaning of home. <br> <br> In the rugged Pacific Northwest lies the Olympic National Forest--nearly a million acres of impenetrable darkness and impossible beauty. From deep within this old growth forest, a six-year-old girl appears. Speechless and alone, she offers no clue as to her identity, no hint of her past.<br> <br> Having retreated to her western Washington hometown after a scandal left her career in ruins, child psychiatrist Dr. Julia Cates is determined to free the extraordinary little girl she calls Alice from a prison of unimaginable fear and isolation. To reach her, Julia must discover the truth about Alice's past--although doing so requires help from Julia's estranged sister, a local police officer. The shocking facts of Alice's life test the limits of Julia's faith and strength, even as she struggles to make a home for Alice--and for herself.<br> <br> "One of [Kristin Hannah's] most compelling and riveting novels."-- Booklist
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