When six-year-old Hannah's brutal honesty is mistaken for lying, she stops speaking. Her family, her community, and eventually, the entire nation struggle to find meaning in her silence.
School officials suspect abuse. Church members are divided—either she has a message from God or is possessed by a demon. Social workers interrupt an exorcism to wrest Hannah away from her momma, who has a tenuous grip on sanity. Hidden in protective foster care for twelve years, she loses all contact with her mother and remains mute by choice.
When Hannah leaves foster care at age eighteen to search for Momma, a national debate rages over her silence. A religious movement awaits her prophecy and celebrates her return. An anarchist group, Voices for the Voiceless, cites Hannah as its inspiration. The nation comes unhinged and the conflict spills into the streets when presidential candidates chime in with their opinions on Hannah—patriotic visionary or dangerous radical. A remnant still believes she is evil and seeks to dispatch her from this world.
Hannah stands at the intersection of anarchists and fundamentalists, between power politics and an FBI investigation. All she wants is to find her momma, a little peace and quiet, and maybe some pancakes.
One word would put an end to the chaos if Hannah can only find her voice.
It's only March but this was one of my best reads of 2013 so far! Hannah is six years old and has stopped talking. Nope she hasn't "lost" her voice she just has decided that no matter what she says nobody is going to believe her or pay her any attention anyhow so why bother? I must say after what this child went thru I can't say I blame her not one bit!
This book scared the crap out of me and it has nothing to do with The Wrath of God or even The Hounds of Hell but the pure stupidity of some folks and how easily this story could actually be a reality for some. Folks take her silence in many ways drastically in some instances to the point the poor child is removed from her home and placed in foster care! Some think she was struck silent with a message from God while others feel she needs an exorcism performed on her for fear she is possessed by a demon. All poor Hannah wants is her mom and to be left alone. Just goes to show how far things can get out of hand when you leave things up to extremist.
In addition to a career as a newspaper editor, publisher, and manager, I’ve written fiction most of my life. The newspaper biz has taken my family and me from Phoenix, Arizona, to small towns in North Carolina and Texas, and from seven years in Washington, D.C., to five years in Asia. Born and raised a small-town kid, I’m as comfortable in Tokyo or Tuna, Texas. I now reside in a small community in Wisconsin where I manage the business operations of a daily newspaper. The variety of places I’ve lived and visited serve as settings for the characters who invade my head.
I’ve had a dozen short stories published in several print anthologies and e-zines, and several articles on the craft of writing fiction. My first novel, Hannah’s Voice, debuted January 15, 2013, and two more novels are in the works for 2013-14.
I also edit fiction and non-fiction books for authors from around the world. It helps that I’m fluent in five languages: U.S. English, U.K. English, Canadian English, and Australian English, plus my native language, Texan.
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