Stolen

( 494 )

Overview

A 2011 Michael L. Printz Honor Book

Gemma, 16, is on layover at Bangkok Airport, en route with her parents to a vacation in Vietnam. She steps away for just a second, to get a cup of coffee. Ty—rugged, tan, too old, oddly familiar—pays for Gemma's drink. And drugs it. They talk. Their hands touch. And before Gemma knows what's happening, Ty takes her. Steals her away. The unknowing object of a long obsession, Gemma has been kidnapped by her stalker and brought to the desolate ...

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Overview

A 2011 Michael L. Printz Honor Book

Gemma, 16, is on layover at Bangkok Airport, en route with her parents to a vacation in Vietnam. She steps away for just a second, to get a cup of coffee. Ty—rugged, tan, too old, oddly familiar—pays for Gemma's drink. And drugs it. They talk. Their hands touch. And before Gemma knows what's happening, Ty takes her. Steals her away. The unknowing object of a long obsession, Gemma has been kidnapped by her stalker and brought to the desolate Australian Outback. STOLEN is her gripping story of survival, of how she has to come to terms with her living nightmare—or die trying to fight it.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Christopher’s debut is an emotionally raw thriller that follows the abduction of 16-year-old Gemma by Ty, a gorgeous, 20-something Australian who is in love with her and hopes to win her love in return. The fast-paced novel is written in the past tense as a sort of diary from Gemma to Ty, suggesting that she has escaped, though this makes the story no less suspenseful. Ty drugs Gemma in a Bangkok airport and transports her to the home he has built in the isolated Australian outback, believing he’s rescuing her from shallow parents and a city life in London she never really fit into. Clever and determined, Gemma gathers her strength and plots numerous escapes to no avail. In the process, she encounters the wildness of her desert surroundings and carefully digs for Ty’s weaknesses, patching together his complex history, including the extent of his six-year obsession with her. Gemma’s fluctuating emotions are entirely believable—she’s repulsed by Ty, but can’t help recognizing the ways in which he’s opened her eyes. It’s a haunting account of captivity and the power of relationships. Ages 14-up. (May)
Children's Literature - Lauri Berkenkamp
This remarkable novel begins with a chilling premise: Gemma is in a Bangkok airport with her parents, waiting for a flight to Vietnam, when she meets handsome, blue-eyed Ty at a coffee stand. Ty offers to buy her a cup of coffee, and she accepts. Too late, Gemma realizes that he has drugged her. She vaguely remembers Ty changing her clothes, her hair, her appearance, pulling her on and off other planes, and feeding her bitter-tasting chocolates that keep her drugged and dreaming. When she finally wakes up, she is alone with Ty in a tiny house in the middle of the vast, unbroken desert of the Australian outback. Little by little, Ty reveals that he has not snatched her at random at the airport; rather, he has watched and followed Gemma since she was ten years old, waiting for the day when he could "rescue" her and bring her to the desert to live with him. Gemma attempts to escape several times, and each time Ty patiently brings her back. He promises her that he will never let her go, that he has taken her to the desert to save her from the soul-crushing life she was destined to lead in London. Gemma begins to fall for Ty when she learns more about Ty's sad past and his desperate connection to the harsh but beautiful freedom the desert represents, even though she knows she has to get away from him. Gemma is bitten by a poisonous snake, and Ty gives up everything, including his freedom, to bring her to safety. At the end of the novel, Gemma remains conflicted about her feelings for Ty, her life, and her experience in the desert. This powerful novel offers readers a very believable look at an experience that is both terrifying and transcendent; readers will abhor Ty's actions but understand his motivations. Gemma is a very real character, coping as best she can with an unimaginable situation in ways with which readers can certainly empathize and appreciate. Reviewer: Lauri Berkenkamp
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up—Sixteen-year-old Gemma, traveling with her parents, is abducted at a Bangkok airport by troubled Ty, a 20-something man from the Outback, in Lucy Christopher's debut novel (Philomel, 2010). Ty has stalked Gemma for years. At the airport he manages to drug her, and then takes her on a flight back to Australia. The novel is written as a first-person narrative told by Gemma in a letter to Ty after her release, revealing the details of the abduction and her feelings, illustrating a classic case of Stockholm syndrome. Gemma has conflicting feelings toward her abductor: she's angry at him for abducting her, but loves him for his care giving. The story darts from escape attempts thwarted by the hostile landscape and climate to Ty's erratic behavior to Ty and Gemma catching a feral camel that plays a large part in Gemma's rescue. Christopher's descriptions of events and intense surroundings are remarkable. She won the 2010 Branford Boase Award for the year's best first novel for young adults published in the United Kingdom, and is short listed for Australia's Prime Minister's Literary Award for Young Adult Fiction. Unfortunately, Emily Gray's narration is uninspired, doing little to enhance the story. The audiobook lacks the suspense of the print version.—Jennifer Ward, Albany Public Library, NY
Kirkus Reviews
This debut novel about an English teen's abduction and imprisonment in the Australian outback unfolds as a letter from captive to captor. From its compelling opening, the novel delivers taut suspense and a riveting plot in a haunting setting. Privileged Gemma, 16, is sympathetic and believable. Her captor, Ty, in his late 20s, is a less-successful creation. Abandoned child turned wasted drifter and stalker, Ty is now an expert survivalist, bent on teaching his abductee admiration and respect for the harsh world in which he's imprisoned her. When Gemma's escape attempts end in near death, Ty rescues her, returning her to captivity, using such handy teachable moments to instruct her on outback ecology. While the landscape is beautifully portrayed and deftly mined for subtext and symbolism, the novel can't overcome its central contradiction. Ty-respectful of the struggling desert ecosystem from humblest succulent to deadliest snake, perceiving each element as part of a fragile, interconnected web-has kidnapped Gemma, in violation of her human rights and needs, and imprisoned her thousands of miles from home. (Fiction. 14 & up)
From the Publisher

A Michael L. Printz Honor Book

ALA Best Fiction for Young Adults

A 2011 USBBY Outstanding International Book

“Complicated and beautiful -- this novel left me doubting my emotions and missing a place I'd never been.” -- Maggie Stiefvater

“All the tension of lightning, all the terror of thunder. A stunning, scary, and beautiful book.”-- John Marsden

* “An emotionally raw thriller…a haunting account of captivity and the power of relationships.” -- Publishers Weekly, starred review

“Disturbing, heartbreaking, and beautiful all at once.” -- School Library Journal

“A complex psychological study that is also a tribute to the hypnotic beauty of the Outback.” -- Booklist

“Taut suspense and a riveting plot in a haunting setting.” -- Kirkus

“Has a veracity and immediacy that rivets the reader to the page. Fascinating, disturbing...” -- Voice of Youth Advocates

_____________________________________________________________________________
"Complicated and beautiful -- this novel left me doubting my emotions and missing a place I'd never been." -- Maggie Stiefvater

"All the tension of lightning, all the terror of thunder. A stunning, scary, and beautiful book." -- John Marsden

"A vivid new voice for teens." -- Melvin Burgess

TheDailyBeast.com, “10 Hot Young Adult titles” roundup, September 16, 2010

BCCB, review, June 2010
“[A]n interesting book for examining what obsessive Twilight-style approaches to love can mean in a real-life context…Readers who can't get enough of Cormier's classic After the First Death will find this induces both shivers and thought.”

Booklist, review, March 15, 2010
“Christopher's first novel is a complex psychological study that is also a tribute to the hypnotic beauty of the outback.”

Kirkus, review, April 15, 2010
“From its compelling opening, the novel delivers taut suspense and a riveting plot in a haunting setting.”

Publishers Weekly, starred review, April 12, 2010
“Christopher's debut is an emotionally raw thriller…fast-paced novel…It's a haunting account of captivity and the power of relationships.”

School Library Journal, review, June 2010
“Disturbing, heartbreaking, and beautiful all at once, this book is the antithesis of the situational horror in Elizabeth Scott's Living Dead Girl.”

VOYA, review, June 2010
“Stolen has a veracity and immediacy that rivets the reader to the page. Vivid descriptions of the Sandy Desert combine with Gemma's emotional turmoil to evoke a sense of danger. This fascinating, disturbing novel should appeal to teens fourteen and older.”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780545170932
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/1/2010
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 60,525
  • Age range: 12 years
  • Product dimensions: 5.82 (w) x 8.58 (h) x 1.17 (d)

Meet the Author


LUCY CHRISTOPHER'S novel STOLEN was named a Printz Honor Book by the ALA and received England's Branford Boase award and Australia's golden Inky for best debut. In a starred review, PUBLISHERS WEEKLY called it *"an emotionally raw thriller...a haunting account of captivity and the power of relationships."* She is also the author of FLYAWAY, a novel for younger readers. Lucy lives in Monmouth, Wales, where she is currently finishing her third book, THE KILLING WOODS, a psychological thriller for teens. Visit her website www.lucychristopher.com and follow her on Twitter @LucyCAuthor.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 494 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(292)

4 Star

(106)

3 Star

(51)

2 Star

(27)

1 Star

(18)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 494 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 2, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Captivating and Beautiful

    While most may find this book dull - it's not a heart-stopping adventure full of adrenaline and bullets - the prose is exquisite, and the development of both characters and plot... perfect. The author has completely dragged me into the story, and she was able to toy with my emotions page by page. One moment I was disgusted by Gemma's kidnapper, the next I found myself drawn to him, pitying him, even at times loving him. Another aspect of the writing I found excellent was just the description; the mental images are so strong I felt as if I was standing in the desert with Gemma and her captor. One thing I can say with utter certainty if you buy the book: You will never know what to expect. For me, the emotional havoc of Stolen is what makes it so good. I define this as a page turner because I actually cared about Gemma's story.

    50 out of 54 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 21, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Breia "The Brain" Brickey for TeensReadToo.com

    STOLEN is the story of 16-year-old Gemma, who is kidnapped from a Bangkok airport by Ty. What follows is basically a journal of everything that happens to Gemma, written in the form of a letter to Ty.

    You don't know at first where Ty has taken her; you only know that she is in the middle of a desert with him. They live in a home that he has built and stocked so he can care for Gemma.

    This was, for me, a novel that I will never forget. The title was very fitting, as you will see after reading the book. After finishing this story, I find it hard to say that I liked it. I did like it, but am not sure if you should like a story about a kidnapping.

    I can honestly say that it was a very intriguing story. It was very well-written, and although there were some slow parts for me, it flowed well. I put this story in the same category as LIVING DEAD GIRL by Elizabeth Scott.

    This book definitely has a place in my collection, and it's a story that I would read again as well as recommend to others.

    29 out of 32 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2011

    FRUSTRATING!

    I could not put this book down when I read it and about half way through i had decided that is was my new favorite book. But I was sadly mistaken when I got the the last 50 pages. This was such an amazing book starting out but to me, the ending was awful. It's frustrating to say the least, when possibly great books are ruined at the end.
    :(

    17 out of 25 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 12, 2011

    Love love love.

    So I just kind of got this book, because it seemed interesting. I read the reviews on here and some on Goodreads. I wasn't sure what exactly I was getting myself into. Before I even got it... I just kind of thought it was some guy who took a girl from an airport and just like raped her or something like that. Boy was I wrong. Basically it's about a guy Ty [Tyler] who has been like stalking her on and off since she was 10. It does sound creepy, I mean it is. He kind of knows everything about her. He takes her to Australia to a place he has built especially for them two. In a way you hate Ty, but you also can't help but fall in love with him. I won't say the end but if you read it.... I wish they could have gotten together and that they could have stayed in Australia. Silly wish right? I at least hope that Lucy makes another book to this one. Also, the way Lucy adds the detail is beyond brilliant to say the least. You can just imagine everything in your mind as if you're right there and then. This has to be the best book I have ever read in my lifetime [I'm only 14 so cut me some slack]. I hate rereading books because I already know what's going to happen... actually I've never been able to reread an entire book except Double Fudge in 4th grade but this is definitely one of those books that you can read over and over ago and you'll never get tired of it. Be prepared to get chocked up at the end or to cry.

    16 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2012

    Tied for "Best Book I Have Ever Read"

    Thank you, Lucy Christopher, for writing this breathtaking, heart-wrenching book. Or maybe NO thank you, because now i have an unattractive red stuffy nose and red puffy eyes.
    Christopher can really steal your emotions and manipulate them through the characters she devised. I found myself on an emotional roller coaster: Pitying Gemma, pitying Ty, loving Ty, hating Gemma. The book left me in a dilemma of raging emotions and jumbled thoughts. This book is raw and filled with real, human emotions. The type of human emotions that are capable of understanding, and loving, the people who wrong you and seeing past their exterior into their hearts. The humans emotions incapable of telling right from wrong. This book left me crying and wanting more.
    If you're the type of reader who:
    -Likes more realistic fiction
    -Likes roller coasters
    -Understands the complexities of human emotions and loves it
    -Loves nature, even "dead" nature
    -Loves reading about love and care
    -Likes thought-provoking books
    ... Then have fun because this book is for you.
    Stolen is everything i expected and about 10 million times more.

    13 out of 15 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2010

    Confused, yet captivated.

    Every once in a while I come across a book that just captivates me and leaves me spellbound. This book definitely fit into that category. The storyline and drama bring out real emotions in you, and by the end of the story I couldn't decide whether or not I liked Ty (one of the main characters). It was one of those books that left me wanting more very badly, and yet I wasn't certain I wanted to know the outcome. I read it in a little over a day, dreamed about it that night, and it still lingers in my thoughts (and I read it over two weeks ago). I loaned it to one of my best friends and she had the exact same thoughts. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that can handle a story that seems so real that it's almost frightening, especially in it's content as it is the story of a girl being kidnapped at an airport and taken to live with her kidnapper in the deserts of Australia. Fascinating, evocative and emotional...a splendid read.

    12 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 12, 2012

    Stolen will leave you breathless. My favorite read of 2011.

    Be warned. This is not your ordinary book. The characters come to life, and stay alive in your heart forever. You'll want to dive into their world and breathe and live the paradise the two main characters went to.

    I couldn't put this book down. I finished the book in three hours, right before I went to sleep, dreaming about it even in my sleep. I smiled. I was shocked. I was frustrated. I was touched. I was scared for both Ty and Genma, and I fell in love with both of them. And I was terribly sad when the book ended.
    But of course, every book has to end. And I loved the beautiful ending it had. It wasn't the ending I wanted, but it was an ending that fits perfectly for this story.

    This book will leave you breathless from the beginning to the end.
    I know it did for me. And by the end of the story, I really wished that I could've been in the desert, the Separates.


    I recommend this story to everyone, of all ages. I'm sure everyone can appreciate a tale of bitter sweet love.

    P.s. Thank you Lucy Christopher, for this wonderful creation. I'm so glad I found this book, and heard the story of Genma and Ty. I'll never forget it.

    10 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 22, 2011

    Stunning

    I fell for ty despite what hee does.beautiful and riveting

    10 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 29, 2012

    Read it and you will not forget it

    i read this book i was left speechless. it was heart wrenching, and i cried for the wrong person but you can't help but feel attached to him in the end. he loved her and he didn't want to leave her but in the end he gave up his freedom for her and it was incredibly touching. i will always remember this book

    7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2011

    Honestly......

    I expected alot more from this book. It took me a vert long time to get intrested and Gemma just...ahhb annoyed me. Is it weird...i kinda fell for Ty even if the whole ordeal was kinda...sad...and also,i didnt like the ending.

    7 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2011

    Great story that keeps you interested.

    The book was a great page turner.

    6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 25, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    What a beauty...

    What can I say? ..this book had me from start to finish. Since I'm not the type to brag and give summaries of stories I've read.. I'll just conclude that this book is beautiful and I enjoyed it very much. The characters are something new and I give Lucy Christopher major credit. Thanks so much for this read.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 19, 2013

    All you need to know about stolen!

    I personally love this book.
    Amount of pages:180 pgs ( including the title page, cover and copyright information)
    Pros: very interesting, u fall in love with gemma, is not alot of pages.
    Cons: slow at times and not an action backed book if that is what u r into
    What parents need to know: this book is not terribly inopropriate compared to books with this same plot. Use of the f word along with several other curse words is in the book sometimes but it is not in every other sentence but it is still in the books. Also many references of drugs and drinking. Also scenes discribing sex and people hooking up in parks. Also talks about raping and touching in inapropriate ways.

    Age level Stolen is good for: 14-15+( depends on the parents)

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 13, 2012

    This novel made my heart twist and turn with anguish from too mu

    This novel made my heart twist and turn with anguish from too much love and pity. I'm a very emotional person so your reaction to the novel may differ from mine but all I can comment on is how beautiful it is. Gemma is a confused girl and as I was reading, I wished that she would get over her city-girl stereotype and see Ty for the troubled boy who needed love more than anything else. On a technical level, the literature Christopher used to weave this heartfelt tale is so intricate and gorgeous. The only way that I can describe the writing is like a sun setting over the sea. The sun itself casts rays of many shades but as each hue holds its own identity, it blends in perfectly with the scenario while the gray blue waves constantly move beneath, creating unsettling feelings in one's soul. The ending is not exactly your happy ever after but it portrays reality that our society-ruled world forces us to face even when our souls tell us that it does not have to be this way.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 17, 2012

    Read this amazing book!

    Stolen is the best book ive ever read, i couldnt stop reading this book. The details are perfect and it really moves you. You will love this book no matter what. If you dont belive me, then read it......

    4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2012

    What?

    I read this book and its wierd it like comepletely changes near the end it makes me feel like the writer ramdomly changed the plot . It already did not make a whole lot of sence than it just went all crazy . And to me she is kinda a jurk cause he saved her life.

    4 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 5, 2011

    ALright...

    Stolen was an okay book...The plot was okay and it wasnt a bad book, i just found it to be a bit slower than i usually like to read...

    4 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 19, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    Rating 1.5/5 I wanted to love this book. I really did. Between

    Rating
    1.5/5

    I wanted to love this book. I really did. Between all the rave reviews I’ve read on Goodreads and its blurb, it seemed like a book I was sure to fall in love with. It didn’t happen, though. Instead, the book was a huge letdown.

    My biggest problem, I think, was the way the book was written. It’s written as a letter by Gemma to her captor, Ty. It didn’t read like a letter to me, not really. Gemma recounts the events of the time she spent with Ty… to him. It was odd and really took away from the story. I remember thinking over and over again that writing a letter to Ty to tell him what happened was redundant. He already knew what had happened. It just seemed weird and it wasn’t done well at all.

    I didn’t care for or connect with Gemma or Ty. I found them to be dull and boring characters. Frankly, I didn’t care what happened to either of them. The only one I cared for, at all, was the camel.

    I couldn’t recommend this book to anyone. It felt like a waste of time and I was really disappointed.

    You can read this and other reviews on my blog, KDH Reviews.

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 28, 2011

    Not my type of book. Misleading

    If your looking for an action packed or suspenseful book, this is definetly not it! The back cover completely decieves you! If you are the sentimental type then go for it.

    3 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 12, 2011

    Good not what i expected!

    I really like it but it wasn't my favorite im the the one who likes lot of action ! This book was hard to follow!

    3 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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