Stolen

Stolen: A Letter to My Captor - Lucy Christopher There may be some spoilers in this review. I had a different reaction than many reviewers. I never sympathized with Ty. He took Gemma's free will and her choices away. Everything he did was focused on his own goals and his own desires and while he pretended that he cared about Gemma's goals or desires, he didn't. If a person truly cares, then they take the risk that they will be rejected or that the other person will say "no" or will disagree. Ty did not allow Gemma this freedom. Ty's choice in the end seems huge and self sacrificing. But it was something he forced himself to do. He was morally obligated to get her medical attention. Ultimately, he (or people like him) need to be either restrained to prevent hurting other people and/or robbing their freedom. I thought it was unrealistic that Ty did not attempt to physically force sex on Gemma. But I believe the author uses this facet of Ty's personality as a way to pull readers in and help the process of readers losing themselves into the romantic image that Ty tried to created (or attempts to create) of himself. I think the story was well written and I read it in a few hours. I enjoyed the retrospective perspective. No, the characters were not hugely fleshed out but I think that was the point. Ty never knew Gemma. He saw what he wanted and took it and Gemma only knew Ty as her captor, the thief of her freedom, her life. So for me, the story represented this very small and skewed perspective and I was okay with the lack of deep character development. From the beginning I understood where the story was heading as in the first few pages Gemma stated she used to love chocolate but now it makes her sick. When I read that part, I allowed myself to relax into the story. I knew then it wouldn't end in a way I would find disturbing. Yes, Ty has a very sad life. He was horribly neglected and abandonned. He was all alone and it is hearbreaking. But that alone does not make a man worthy of being a partner, right?I think it is interesting to compare the "realities" of kidnapping in this story (from the beginning to the end) to many themes that are present in so many YA books and PNR books right now, for example what happens in this book (if it were happening in the PNR and YA books) would be a path toward true love or demonstration of passion and love. The theme of overprotectiveness beyond what the heroine wants seems to be a constant in many PNR and YA books, but hey, the hero knows best right? Doesnt he? The theme of restraint and removal of the heroine from what she wants because the hero knows he can give her better -- isn't that sweet? Or maybe, the hero is doing what is best for his people and the heroine just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. And let's not forget the tortured hero theme, I love that theme and it is all over YA and PNR books. But again, a bad past isn't a reason to be loved. It has to be the actions of the person. I like what the author does in this book, she leads the reader down a path with truly reprehensible behavior and confuses it with physical beauty both of the captor and the surroundings, she also adds in the confusion of the bonding between the captor and the victim and both of their emotions. I think what she did is brilliant. I don't see any glamorization of the kidnapper or of the victim. I see it as a snapshot of the psychological process and maybe, I am overreading it, but a comment on other current popular literature (of which I enjoy reading!). Thankfully, in the end, Gemma is able to see herself free. A quick and easy read, I recommend it.