So I read this REALLY AWESOME book last night (from start to finish in one sitting)… and crazy enough, it’s from 2011! Even though I had searched for books like this in the past, somehow… this one never came up. Until last night. I saw it. I saw it’s crazy-ish price. And yet I couldn’t help but sample it. And then once the sample was done, I needed more (price be damned), and I bought it.
Was the ride worth the price? HECK YAH (to me, anyway). Where was it going? WHAT was gonna happen??? What would be the outcome?! HOW?? WHY??
I didn’t sleep, I didn’t get tired, I read it on an adrenaline-rush of intrigue and excitement, and I dreamed about it and I thought about it all day.
Amazing writing and it brought me back to my “olden days” when I first started reading —> “these”. These? Yes… kidnappy-stockholm-syndromy books.
I know… some of you don’t “get me” (I received a particularly perturbed, er… confused comment last night about “why people like these?”) but some of you… well. You get me SO much!
This one is right up our “darkish alley” —> I say “darkish because it’s not as “detailed” or crazy as some, but the story is intense and amazing and I had to wake up my husband once it was over, to have him help me analyze “stuff”. Yep… one of those.
And once I started telling him the whole story, he was right there with me. It was good enough, even for him to pay attention. Just sayin’.
But many of y’all get me. ‘Cause it’s all about the ride, right? The initial denial… the fear. The negotiations. The unavoidable acceptance. The “driving me crazy ’cause I have NO idea what’s going on!!!” and then, (well in OUR books) the sweet moments of gentle care from the one that at first, we feared (books, people… books ).
Real life —> this is ALWAYS bad. Not EVER good – only “fun/good” in books, because the author doesn’t necessarily write “monsters” and we get to discover the mind. The possible connections and/or relationships in a messed-up situation (no matter what the outcome).
He didn’t look mad or cruel. In fact, I had to admit that he was good-looking. It confused and upset me, to register that he was attractive. Not that I wanted him to be scarily hideous, but finding him attractive seemed crazy and somehow wrong.
As I told my husband, it’s a psychological journey. An exploration of something that we’ve all heard of, but can only “maybe” have a smidgen of comprehension of… through these books. And if a character is in a circumstance like this, I’d much rather read about a “sweet-ish” bad guy then a horrendous one (that nobody can connect to) as in some of the more “horror” genre reads I’ve read. Intensity by Dean Koontz, anyone? Eeeeeeep!!! (although I was totally on my toes with that one, too).
But I dunno you guys, there are many things that fascinate me about the human mind and one of those things is the “Stockholm Syndrome”. A coping mechanism that helps one keep their sanity? Or have they lost it by this point?
So what’s it about?
Seventeen year old Chloe (btw: she turns eighteen in this), is in Greece vacationing with friends, but is kidnapped off the side of the road one day as she is exploring by herself. She’s confused, sure it’s a mistake, but soon realizes there’s no turning back, no matter “what” they kidnapped her for.
I felt like the last person on earth. No one knew where I was; no one had any way of finding me.
They are actually quite forthcoming with her, explaining her captivity is for a prisoner exchange. And as they “do what they need to do” she gets to know her main handsome young captor (since he’s the one that visits her in her “cushy” warehouse” feeds her - cooks for her – and cares for her).
Even though I was blindfolded, being held captive, and possibly in the hands of murderers, the delicious sandwich made me feel better. It’s hard to believe how quickly you become accustomed to losing your freedom, being blindfolded, now knowing where you are or what’s happening to you.
But this is not all “cushy”. Cushier than many of our dark reads, YES… but she faces terrible horrors. From a tormenter that chooses to punish her behind the main “bad guy’s” back…
I knew at once that I was in trouble. I’d been right, they were terrorists. They hated me, and they were going to kill me, though maybe not right away.
… to her own mind, scaring her our of her fragile sanity…. after days of isolation.
I longed for company and at the same time I was terrified of who might come.
I TOTALLY felt each one of those moments. Even the moments/days when it was just her. Those were the scariest of all.
But what I felt (even though I could see a downward spiral) was her attachment to bad-guy #1. Her “good-guy” bad guy. Attentive, sweet, gentle, caring… even nurturing. Lenient. But SO distant. He has his own story, you see.
“What do you have against being hugged?” I asked him.
“I don’t want to benefit from you in any way,” he said.
His answer surprised me. He was admitting that he would enjoy it if I hugged him. He likes me, I thought.
“But I’m the one who needs you.”
He stared at me, but I was used to his stares and I stared back. Finally he said, “I don’t want your forgiveness. I’ve taken away your freedom, and I almost let you die. If we manage to maintain some kind of equilibrium, we’re doing well. Anything else would be inappropriate.”
“Fine!” I said, slouching in my chair. Trying to cover my embarrassment, I grumbled, “You know, you’re a very poor hostage-taker. You’re not supposed to care so much about me. Didn’t you read the hostage-taking manual?”
And her own initial, incredible “maturity” to… a more “childish” feel. Her personality as she is forced to adapt to her captor’s expectations. She becomes both. Who she was… who she now is. A stockholm syndrome victim? Does she realize this? Does it… will it... matter?
I LOVED THIS!!!!! I loved the premise, I loved his “fight”, I loved the reason, I loved the “budding friendship”, I loved the psychological reactions and I loved… the ending.
STOP HERE!!!! I know MANY if not ALL of you haven’t read this yet!!! How do I know? ‘Cause NONE of you have told me about it yet, and I know at least ONE of you would have, had you read it. ‘Cause it’s OUR book. It’s OUR thing. But I’m including this for those who have read it, to come back and maybe… message me to analyze with me…. Not a spoiler per se, but an analysis…
I can’t tell you…. anything. But what I can say is I have been analyzing and going over SO much of what I thought I knew… to what *might* be actual reality. There are a few things… left open. TWO BIG things… the future of her… and him, and the truth (which could be THREE things in the “truth” alone). The ending was almost… harrowing.
And since there are so many unanswered questions here… there is also SO much potential… for more.
Had I known about it when I was looking for more after a certain book that I loved (and had me anguishing “Stolen“)… sigh. Better late than never. And I’m not saying that this ends like Stolen did. Nope (if you read that one don’t automatically assume…).
I’m just saying in “tone and mood”… this one is kind of like that one. Not so “physically” overt (more “PG”) but definitely mentally/psychologically & emotionally overt.
Okay now you can come back… just for the bottom part.
4.5 stars ’cause it was awesome. This one will make you think. And then you’ll think again.
Fantastic writing, a deep exploration of the human psyche that has me questioning my own… and even without the obvious “steam” (more along the lines of “pining” on a two-way-street – but subtly intense nonetheless) OMG!!!! I am still so obsessed with “my mind”. Her mind. His mind. All of it. SO GOOD! How did I miss this? Will there be more? I’m gonna ask!!
P.S. I’d totally give this 5 stars 1.) if it were less expensive, and 2.) if I knew there’d be another installment (of ANY sort) to this, coming…