Title: Magic Hour
Author: Kristin Hannah
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publish Date: November 27, 2007
What's the Story?:
From Goodreads.com: "Dr. Julia Cates was one
of the country's preeminent child psychiatrists until a shocking tragedy
ruined her career. Retreating to her small western Washington hometown,
Julia meets an extraordinary six-year-old girl who has inexplicably
emerged from the deep woods nearby--a child locked in a world of
unimaginable fear and isolation. To Julia, nothing is more important
than saving the girl she now calls Alice. But Julia will need help from
others, including the sister she barely knows and a handsome doctor with
secrets of his own. What follows will test the limits of Julia's faith
and strength, as she struggles to find a home for Alice . . . and for
My Two Cents:
"Magic Hour" is the story of Julia, a woman who is looking for a new beginning. After a issue ends up upending her career, she is left to pick up the pieces and it seems better to retreat back to the small town where she's from. This means reuniting with her sister with whom she has had a very rocky relationship with. It also means taking on the case of a young girl that she calls Alice and Alice changes everything.
Kristin Hannah is quickly becoming one of my go-to authors when I need well drawn characters and an engaging story that usually tugs on the ol' heartstrings, which this book certainly does. It is so hard to not feel for Julia after a mistake ends up breaking her career. She is looking for redemption and it is clear that when she meets Alice that they need each other. I loved watching how their relationship unfolded and how they help each other to grow. Alice is almost feral when Julia first meets her. Julia makes it her personal mission to figure out where Alice came from and how she got the way that she is (Alice doesn't speak when they first meet).
Although the plot was a little predictable and the structure (big city girl goes back to her small town and everything changes) is also a little predictable, this was a good comfort read. It's the equivalent of a big mug of tea: you know exactly what you're getting but the known is still super comforting!