Stolen

Stolen: A Letter to My Captor - Lucy Christopher Beautiful. Evil, but beautiful. Evil because I now have Stockholm Syndrome. Beautiful because I didn't realise it was happening, the writing was so subtle yet engrossing and real. Gritty.I fell in love with Ty, the kidnapper. He was so kind, considerate and almost harmless really (Hello, Stockholm!). He'd saved Gemma's life so many times and eventually sacrificed his freedom for her. How can anyone not love him a little for that? I understood his motivations. He was lonely and had been badly treated all his life. At first I had all kinds of ideas of what he was: paedophile, rapist, killer etc. He was none of those things. He just wanted to escape civilisation and when he spotted Gemma, who he believed was being neglected by her parents just as he was, he wanted to rescue her.I can't understand why people compare this to Living Dead Girl. Ray, the kidnapper is all of the things I mentioned above. He was not kind, he raped, he's a paedophile and he murdered. I did not fall in love with him. It's not a fair comparison. They're completely different.Although at times Ty seemed scary, he was vulnerable and fragile too. He cried. He suffered from nightmares. In some ways he's like a child himself, with his love of the land, his painting and his folk stories. His sense of fun can be a little strange but there are some funny moments. It's not all fear and confusion. Catching the camel was hilarious. She (the camel) had my heart from then on.As you can tell I loved Ty but I also cared about Gemma. At first I just wanted her to accept her situation, to stop looking for trouble. The number of times she said "You're lying!" or "I don't believe you!" got on my nerves because she said it in relation to the simplest of plausible statements but when she calmed down she was so starkly honest with herself even when she wanted to go into denial. She was strong. Both characters were to have survived their traumas. You may think I'm as loopy as Ty but I wished for a happy ending. Gemma and Ty together. Maybe not out in the desert forever but living on the edge of a small town. Happily ever after. I can dream, right?Stolen. Everything in this book is stolen, including Ty. Nothing belongs to anyone. Not even themselves. There's only the land and the sky. And survival. Beautiful.