Author: Lucy Christopher
Publisher: Chicken House
My Rating: 5 out of 5 star
Summary (from Goodreads): Sixteen year old Gemma is kidnapped from Bangkok airport and taken to the Australian Outback. This wild and desolate landscape becomes almost a character in the book, so vividly is it described. Ty, her captor, is no stereotype. He is young, fit and completely gorgeous. This new life in the wilderness has been years in the planning. He loves only her, wants only her. Under the hot glare of the Australian sun, cut off from the world outside, can the force of his love make Gemma love him back? The story takes the form of a letter, written by Gemma to Ty, reflecting on those strange and disturbing months in the outback. Months when the lines between love and obsession, and love and dependency, blur until they don't exist - almost.
My Summary: Gemma is a normal teen from London on vacation with her parents. During a stop-over in a Bangkok airport, Gemma meets a charming stranger. Fueled by her anger at her parents, Gemma sits down and has coffee with the man; they chat, trading stories and pleasantries. But Gemma begins to feel strangely...
Suddenly she's being dragged off by the stranger, her limbs numb and useless. She can't fight back, can't react... she's being stolen.
She awakens a few days later, in a terrain so alien it might as well be another planet. She realizes two things: she has been kidnapped, and the only other person for thousands of miles is her kidnapper - the charming man from the airport - the one who stole her away and made her his own.
My Thoughts: Since the moment I read the preface of this novel almost 2 years ago, I knew I was going to read it. I didn't think I'd like it though - after reading through a few dozen reviews and summaries, my thoughts were somewhere along the lines of, "how the heck can people think this was a good story? This guy is a mentally deranged kidnapper in love with a teenaged girl!" But I knew I had to read it too, because people were recommending it to me left and right, so I added it to my to-read list, thinking I would put it off as much as I possibly could.
Summer rolled around and I realized I had no new books to read on vacation, so I got myself to the bookstore and strolled around the YA section. And even though it wasn't even close to the top of my to-read list, I grabbed Stolen off the shelf, telling myself that, even if I wasn't able to get past the first chapter, I'd have the pool to keep me occupied.
I swear, I never expected to fall in love with this book. It just sort of happened, you know? Lucy Christopher's writing is like poetry, and her ability to take words and form a landscape in my mind is downright amazing. For those of you who've read it already, you know what I'm talking about. For those of you who haven't: please, please read this book.
It's been almost 2 years now, and Stolen is still probably my absolute favourite stand-alone YA novel. It does what all my favourite books do: breaks your heart into tiny little pieces. Gemma and Ty's story is one of the few that gets to me every time - I bawl my eyes out every time I re-read it.
Final Thoughts: If I could give this book 10 out of 5 stars, I definitely would. It's one of those ones you can't ever forget, no matter how many more books you may read afterwards. I whole-heartedly recommend this one to readers 15 and over.