The Healer Paperback – Oct 19 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
Few Christian novelists are currently as hot as Henderson, who is burning up CBA bestseller charts with two different series and earning a reputation for her action-packed stories of suspense, romance and courage. But this fifth installment in the O'Malley series shows a bit of wear and tear. Rachel O'Malley is a trauma psychologist specializing in helping victims of disasters obtain closure and heal spiritually. Her emotions are drained by assisting refugees after an Illinois flood and by her grief over her sister Jennifer, who is dying of cancer. As Rachel works to repair flood-damaged psyches and homes while exploring romance with Capt. Cole Parker, another sister, Lisa, a forensic pathologist, tries to decipher clues at a possible double murder scene. The murder weapon turns up again in a rather clichd Columbine-esque school shooting that improbably finds Rachel and Jennifer arriving at its onset. It's a dizzying read: the strained plot never seems fully fleshed out, and there are some odd moments, such as when Rachel and Jennifer plan a "surprise wedding" for their sister Kate. Henderson's writing can have a magical quality that keeps readers turning the pages, though, even as they're scrambling to remember the more than two dozen featured characters, their occupations and their relationships to one another. Loyal Henderson fans will likely snatch up this latest O'Malley tale, but new readers won't get the flavor for the quality of some of her previous offerings.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
From Library Journal
Following The Protector, Henderson tackles the issue of faith in a person touched daily by tragedy. A trauma psychologist for the Red Cross, Rachel O'Malley can be called at a moment's notice into areas where disasters, natural or human, can turn an ordinary day into a nightmare. Battling her growing feelings for Capt. Cole Parker, a firefighter who works with her brother, Rachel also wrestles with her ambivalence toward a God who is letting her beloved sister, Jennifer, slowly die of cancer. When three kids are killed at a local school and a ruptured dam floods the area, Rachel doesn't know where she'll find the strength to continue, but her family and Cole lend her their faith. Expect high demand from fans, as Henderson turns in her most powerful, moving entry in the series yet.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
The O'Malley family consists of seven brothers and sister, three boys and four girls. Since they were little they had been in the same orphanage and when they got out of the orphanage, they decided to 'adopt' each other, taking the name O'Malley as their family name. They all have very important jobs, Marcus is a U.S. Marshal, Kate a negotiator for hostage situations, botched-up robberies, etc., Jennifer is a doctor, Jack a fireman, Stephen a paramedic, Rachel a trauma psychologist, and Lisa is a forensic pathologist. This story is about Rachel O'Malley, 'the healer'.
Rachel O'Malley by the faith and prayers of her family is now a Christian. But being a trauma psychologist is a tense and stressful job. Working at disasters for the Red Cross, trying to heal the lives of children torn apart by parent's divorces, Rachel finds it hard at times to trust in Jesus to help her let go of the hurt she sees.
Captain Cole Parker, captain of a fire company who has spent the last few years fighting fires and trying to stop arsons. A devout Christian from a young age, Cole sticks by Rachel and helps her through the hard times. It is inevitable that they become closer, even reaching the point of falling in love.
But in the midst of Rachel of having to deal with the fact she might lose her sister Jennifer to cancer, tragedy strikes. When Rachel's sister Lisa O'Malley discovers a murder scene discovered in a flooded community, it is suspected that there may be a second victim. Things become worse when there is gunfire at a local school.Read more ›
I found the situation with Rachel's sister, Jennifer, was very well handled. My mother was dying from cancer when I originally read this and I bawled, but in a good way, during her moments in the book. I'm now reading it again, especially Jennifer's parts, to gain insight into how my mother may have been feeling before her death. I also appreciated the fact that Rachel was already a Christian at the onset of this story, having to deal with a new faith during such trying times rather than explain why the character didn't believe through most of the read as happened in the other books. A refreshing change in my opinion.
Finally, I absolutely loved Rachel and Cole's relationship. Their first kiss had my hair standing on end. Very well written.
In all, this was a fantastic book. One I'm reading again, and will be passing on to friends.
This book begins with flood relief, moves to a school shooting, and ends with the first O'Malley family funeral. While the story does present the reader with a couple of unlikely situations, Henderson gives the reader one of her best stories. The whole O'Malley family is back together in this book. Despite the burnout and emotional drain that several of the O'Malley's are facing, the joy of family loyalty and love comes through in parts of the book. Despite the fact that Jennifer O'Malley loses her battle with cancer, the reader sees a portrayal of how a Christian faces such an end.
Emotions run deep in this book and Henderson has written them well. I think this book reveals a great deal of maturity in Henderson's development as a writer. If you have read the other O'Malley books, you'll enjoy this one. If you haven't read the previous books in this series, this book is probably not the best entry point. It would be worth your while to go back to the beginning and get to know this great family. The O'Malley family is brilliantly conceived. Enjoy getting to know them!
(This is not a plot summary. There are already several very good ones.)
This one, like the preceding one (the protector) isn't half as good. The book is supposedly about _Rachel_ and _Cole_ with perhaps some of her family showing up *occasionally* to provide some depth to the story. Ha ha ha. The other O'Malleys already *had* books. Their characters have not really changed since their books! So, um, how come they keep showing up again and again and again and again... I thought this was "Rachel's" book. It's the O'Malley's book....and the book of all the people they are engaged/married to (which is a lot). In the first few chapters alone, we have Rachel and Jack and Cole and Lisa and Stephen there and others mentioned. Confusing to new readers, boring to old. They seem to sound less intelligent and more almost obsessively focused on family family family family with each book. The romance is tepid and dull. There is no way I will be buying her next O'Malley book.
Most recent customer reviews
As I said all along....wonderful series.....read them all, including "Jennifer, a love story
Love those O'Malleys; sorry to be almost finished the series.Published 8 months ago by Bonnie L. Fraser
I believe that this was the best novel that I have ever read. I really enjoyed reading this novel and I would happily read it again. Read morePublished on Dec 2 2003 by alichia
This books venutures into the genres of romance, thriller, and mystery, set against a Christian background. Read morePublished on Sept. 12 2003 by Katayla
I have been reading Henderson for over a year now and this book is by far the most emotional. I loved the way that she has been building up to this book. Read morePublished on April 27 2003
This book had to be the saddest of them all due to the subject nature and the story line. However, Henderson did a great job guiding her readers through their grief.Published on April 8 2003 by whea-wix
In a time when it is so hard to find quality, clean fiction, this book shines like a beacon for a good read. Read morePublished on Feb. 16 2003
I am an avid reader and get my hands on just about any book I can. I have been reading every book in this series as soon as it comes out. Read morePublished on Jan. 24 2003
This book is probably one of or my favorite out of the O'Malley series so far! I would recommend it to everyone - others have said that the numerous characters are hard to follow... Read morePublished on Jan. 16 2003 by J. Kennedy
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