Magic Hour: A Novel
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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.
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. In Magic Hour, Kristin Hannah creates one of her most beloved characters, and delivers an incandescent story about the resilience of the human spirit, the triumph of hope, and the meaning of home.
with papers spread out all around him. For no reason she could quite touch, Ellie felt a rush of relief. “Where are the girls?” “Peanut took them to dinner and a movie so that I could work.” “Work?” “I thought you’d be out with George tonight.” “I need new friends.” She sighed. “He was wrong for me. What do I need to do? Take out a billboard?” “Wrong for you?” Cal leaned against his desk, studying her. “Usually you don’t figure that out until you’re married.” “Very funny. Now, really, what
open her eyes. An engine starts and the movement hurts. Oh, God, it hurts … She can hear her husband’s voice, the soft, whispering love sounds that have guided her through the last ten years of her life, and though she can hear nothing from her children, her babies, she knows they are here, watching her. More than anything in the world, she wants a chance to say something to them, even if only a sound, a sigh, something … Warm tears leak from the corners of her eyes, slide behind her ears, and
she was being stupid—the fly going straight into the web—she couldn’t seem to stop herself. She got out of the Suburban and walked across the dark yard, hearing the gentle lapping of the lake along the shore. Max heard the car drive up and hoped like hell it wasn’t a medical emergency. This was his only night off call this week and he had already finished his second scotch. He heard footsteps on the porch. Then a knock on his front door. “I’m out here,” he called out. “On the deck.” There
sitting on the sofa with a mug of Bailey’s in her hand and a Costco fake mink throw rug over her feet. “That’s because Dad used to buy the biggest one on the lot, then cut off the top to make it fit in the room.” Ellie laughed at the memory. It was one she’d forgotten: The great big tree, taking up the whole corner of the room, its top hacked off; Mom frowning in disappointment, swatting Dad’s arm. You never listen, Tom, Mom would say, a tree isn’t supposed to be trimmed on top. I should make
“Stay.” She looked terrified. This reaction didn’t surprise Julia. She’d anticipated it. At some point in her life Alice had been taken somewhere—by someone—in a car. Perhaps that trip was the start of the bad times. “I won’t hurt you, Alice. And I won’t let anyone else hurt you.” Her blue-green eyes were huge in the tiny white oval of her face. She was trying so hard to be brave. “No leave Girl?” “Never. No.” Julia tightened her hold on Alice’s hand. “We’ll go see Ellie.” “LEllie?” Julia