In a moment of desperation, Brad Hughes made an impassioned promise to God, but when should his responsibilities end? This question plagues Brad, a widower and owner of a lucrative mining operation, after rescuing twelve-year-old Esther Morgan--a mute, orphaned child in critical condition at Children's Hospital. The answer to his question is seemingly out of his control, even predetermined. While advocating for the girl, Brad finds himself confronting the FBI and civil authorities, misleading his own family, and ultimately, fighting for his very life against Esther's kidnapper and mother's murderer: a soulless narcissistic killer.For her part, Esther (Tick) is a formidable challenge--a brilliant, volatile, perhaps dangerous child prone to secrecy, manipulation, and suspected of murder. But to Brad, the veteran miner, something rare and worth far more than gold or diamonds lies beneath Tick's tortured surface, gifts that transform his life and the lives of everyone around her.139

--Jeffrey Higgs

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