Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Stolen by Lucy Christopher

by Lucy Christopher
Published by Chicken House Ltd.
Publication Date: May 4, 2009
Pages: 299
Source: Library

(from Goodreads)

It happened like this. I was stolen from an airport. Taken from everything I knew, everything I was used to. Taken to sand and heat, dirt and danger. And he expected me to love him. This is my story. A letter from nowhere.

Told in a letter to her captor by 16-year-old Gemma, Stolen explores the influence that a really wild and remote space can have on the inner development of a young woman.

Gemma, a British city-living teenager, is kidnapped while on holiday with her parents. Her kidnapper, Ty, takes her to the wild land of outback Australia. To Gemma’s city-eyes, the landscape is harsh and unforgiving and there are no other signs of human life for hundreds of kilometres in every direction. Here, there is no escape. Gemma must learn to deal with her predicament, or die trying to fight it.

Ty, a young man, has other ideas for her. His childhood experience of living in outback Australia has forever changed the way he sees things. But he too has been living in the city; Gemma’s city. Unlike Gemma, however, he has had enough. In outback Australia he sees an opportunity for a new kind of life; a life more connected to the earth. He has been watching and learning about Gemma for many years; when he kidnaps her, his plan finally begins to take shape.

But Ty is not a stereotypical kidnapper and, over time, Gemma comes to see Ty in a new light, a light in which he is something more sensitive. The mysteries of Ty, and the mystery of her new life, start to take hold. She begins to feel something for her kidnapper when he wakes screaming in the night. Over the time spent with her captor, Gemma’s appreciation of him develops …but is this real love, or Stockholm Syndrome?

My Thoughts 

This is another book that I almost let slip by me and I would have been a fool to let it. When Stolen was first published, it caught my attention briefly but it wasn’t until Heather from Buried in Books asked me about it that it became a book that I had to read. At the time, she hadn’t read it either but knew more about the premise than I did and she explained that it was written as a letter by the kidnapped to her captor. I thought that was an interesting way to tell this story and I was convinced that it is a book that I must read.

I had no idea how intense this book was going to be. And as I read it, I kept thinking to myself, I don’t know if I could have handled reading this story as a teenager. It was emotionally gripping and confusing because I could never get a handle on how I was supposed to feel about Gemma’s captor, Ty. Like Gemma, I hated him because he stole her away from her life, her family, everything that she knew. He was a creeper and a stalker. He drugged her to kidnap her, but once he had her, he didn’t harm her. He did what he could to take care of her. There wasn’t a time that I ever thought what he was doing was right, but I could understand he motives and justifications of wanting her with him.

Stolen is beautifully written with exquisite descriptions of the landscapes which depict a vastness of the desert. I could feel the heat of the hot blazing sun and the coolness of the desert nights. I also experienced the intensity in the moments when Gemma tries to fight back and escape her captor. It made me anxious and my heart pound. It felt like I was there witnessing those moments, not reading about them. I think that is a testament to the author’s ability to captivate the reader and make them believe in this story.
I didn’t know how the story was going to end until the very last pages, and I think Stolen ended perfectly. The story could have gone in many directions and been much more darker than it was. I like that the author didn’t take it there just because she could. Let someone else tell that story. 

Disclaimer: This review is based on the hard cover version which I checked out from my local library. I was not compensated in any way for providing this review. Thoughts and opinions are my own.


  1. Joli-

    I had to laugh when you said you gave me a shout out about this book. No, I still haven't read it. Still too chicken. I'm glad you did though. I always think about the girl in Utah, Elizabeth Smart, when she was kidnapped and how she walked around freely with her kidnappers and how brainwashed she must have been to deny who she was. I was wondering if that was what this book was like, but I'm guessing not if she tries to get away. I'm definitely going to have to read it. Thanks for the review. Now I guess I have to be brave! D***!


  2. Awesome review! Here's mine if you don't mind: http://lorxiebookreviews.blogspot.com/2012/12/stolen-by-lucy-christopher.html

    Thanks and have a nice day! :)


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