Friday, June 18, 2010

Stolen by Lucy Christopher

Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: The Chicken House; (May 1, 2010)
ISBN-10: 0545170931
ISBN-13: 978-0545170932

Gemma, 16, is on layover at Bangkok Airport, en route with her parents to a vacation in Vietnam. She steps away for just a second, to get a cup of coffee. Ty--rugged, tan, too old, oddly familiar--pays for Gemma's drink. And drugs it. They talk. Their hands touch. And before Gemma knows what's happening, Ty takes her. Steals her away. The unknowing object of a long obsession, Gemma has been kidnapped by her stalker and brought to the desolate Australian Outback. STOLEN is her gripping story of survival, of how she has to come to terms with her living nightmare--or die trying to fight it.


In the voice of a London-local named Gemma, Stolen is a letter that she writes directly addressing her kidnapper. She never expected that her vacation trip to Vietnam with her parents would take a detour to Aussie. Unknown territory. When she wakes up, she doesn't know where she is, what he's done to her, or how in the world could he have stolen her away at an airport. All of these questions she asks herself, he--name apparently Ty--knows the answers too. Only when they get to their destination does she realize that he is no ordinary kidnapper. You know the question all victims of kidnappers want to ask when their in the kidnappers presence, and even if they don't, you know they're thinking it at least: Why? Well, Ty's reason is tied to his back-story and most surprisingly, to hers as well.

Stolen was unbelievably different from what you'd ever expect it to be, that which makes this "victims" story compelling and addictive to know. Even the most dull of parts adds to the moments that Gemma's experiencing being in her captor's "desert." Christopher radiated something quite imaginary when she wrote in detail this "letter" from Gemma to her captor. Always referring to him as "You" throughout the entirety of this letter. It had me on edge constantly to the point where in the crucial final moments of the ending, I really didn't think I'd be able to read it. Some many emotions this book induced, I felt like a blubbering baby, and inevitably found myself liking the kidnapper more and more. Stolen opened my eyes to the meaning of becoming something when your not in your usual surroundings, and analyzing what you were when you had safety.

Recommended on so many levels of reading one person's seeming hopelessness turn into something far more complicated and unpredictable.

Grade: A