In Stolen, a woman is found washed up on the beach. She's barely alive and no one knows who she is until Dale, a friend, comes forward and identifies her as Lotte, a woman she worked with on a cruise ship some time ago. Lotte has been missing for a year and has no memory of where she's been or what's happened to her in that time frame. As the story progresses, we learn more about Lotte's horrific ordeal as her memory returns and she relays the events to her friends.
I sort of enjoyed this book. Although it's not really classified as a mystery, the story was filled with plenty of intrigue and suspense that kept me interested until the very end. The writing was easy to read and straight forward with nothing overly complicated. I especially liked that the story was interspersed with Lotte's memories as they came back to her.
Having said that, the story felt like a parable at first. It felt like a lesson was looming and it made me a little wary. After awhile, the story changed up a bit and I realized that I was wrong about it. I think that this initial reaction removed me from the story, though, and I had trouble connecting after that.
The characters were just ok. While I liked Simon and his partner, who were kind to Lotte, I didn't feel connected to any of the others. The characters evolved as the story went on, but it would have been nice to see more of that. I was perplexed by the mean characters who seemed particularly nasty and very easily provoked almost to the point of being unnatural.
I liked the background information on Fern and Howard, however, unless I missed something I'm not sure what the point was of bringing it up so near the end of the book. I didn't glean anything pertinent from that section and wasn't sure why I was reading about their history at that point.
Lesley Pearse has a large backlist and I'm sure her fans will love this one. I would probably read another book by this author given the chance, but I wouldn't run to the book store looking for her next book.
Want to read another review? Here's one from Jonita and another from Luanne.
For more information about this book, please visit the Penguin website.
For more information about the author and other cool stuff, please visit Lesley Pearse's website.
I'd like to thank those nice people at Penguin Canada for this review copy.
Stolen by Lesley Pearse, Penguin, ©2010. ISBN 9780718152857(Uncorrected proof), 385p.