A Reading-Addict: A Look at STOLEN

This begins a series of book reviews by reading-addict junior Darrian Breedlove. 

A Reading-Addict: A Look at STOLEN

STOLEN is the story of Gemma, a sixteen-year-old girl on her way to a family vacation. She steps away from her family to get a coffee, when she is approached by a handsome stranger named Ty. He pays for her drink, and drugs it when she’s not looking. They talk for a bit. Their hands touch. And before Gemma knows what is happening, he takes her. Steals her away. To sand and heat. To emptiness and isolation. To nowhere. And expects her to love him. This novel is about Gemma desperately trying to survive; of how she has to come to terms with her living nightmare — or die trying to fight it.

This novel really stands out among other works of literature that deal with the modern tragedy of abduction. STOLEN is written as a letter from Gemma to the man who kidnapped her, Ty.

One factor that was really compelling about the book was that Gemma was not a damsel in distress given her abduction — she tried on multiple occasions to escape her captor despite how small her chances were of actually succeeding. Her attempts of escape were very gripping because you never knew how Ty would react or how her attempt would wind up.

Not only does this story follow a strong, female protagonist who never quite gives up in a situation of hopelessness, but it also has a very vivid writing style that takes you into the shoes of Gemma throughout her terrifying yet interesting experience. It makes you question what you would do if you were put through an event like that.

The relationship that develops between Gemma and Ty throughout the story line is very captivating and emotional. Ty cares about Gemma and does nothing to hurt her, which is different from the captors that are seen on the news whom have killed or raped their victims. In the novel, Ty raises questions on what his intentions and reasons are, and what he is hiding.  You find yourself wondering what exactly Gemma feels towards Ty as she starts to understand him as a person and learns about his past.

I was conflicted as much as Gemma when it came down to understanding what kind of a person Ty truly was and how I felt about his character, and that proved to be a really important aspect of character development and suspense in the plot . Despite the fact that Ty was a kidnapper, I found myself really starting to care for him. Overall, the novel raised one big question about the relationship between Gemma and Ty: Is Gemma starting to fall in love with Ty or is it a case of Stockholm Syndrome? This was a very interesting and amazing idea to plant in a reader’s mind, because really, it is up to the reader to figure that out.

STOLEN by Lucy Christopher was an emotional thriller that I could not put down and it left me wanting more once I finished the book. I gave it 5/5 stars. I now consider this book to be one of my all time favorite novels, and I highly recommend it to anyone who likes captivating plots and survival stories.

Book Review by Darrian Breedlove