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Claire Dorotik is twenty-four years old, her whole life in front of her, when her father is brutally murdered and her mother is arrested for the crime. Along with her grief and struggle to stay in her master's program for psychotherapy, Claire is now solely responsible for maintaining and protecting her family's horse business and ranch, which occupies all her waking hours and then some. Then, in a cruel twist of fate, her mother places blame for the murder directly on Claire-on the daughter so much like the father, the daughter who loved and shared everything with him. With few places to turn-her family siding with her mother and her friends no longer answering her calls-Claire begins to rely more and more on the support and love of her horses. Even while learning new depth to the feelings of loss, betrayal, abandonment, and terror, Claire discovers the horses' amazing capacity for empathy in the face of human trauma and their almost psychic ability to provide her with what had been taken from her. Through their wisdom, joy, and sacrifice, these incredible heroes show Claire and us all that life, even in the darkest and most horrifying times, is still worth living.