A large number of my friends recently read this book and they all raved about it. I was really excited to get my hands on a copy to read (thanks Wendy), especially since I was 267th on the list at the library and they only have 10 copies. The beginning of the book showed promise, a good thriller premise, but once Annie was with her captor, I found the story kind of dragged for me. Not sure why, but I really had a hard time getting through the first half of this book. It must be because the author goes into such detail about the horrible things that happen to Annie while she was held prisoner. I found myself wondering how so many of my "book twins" could have loved this book so much and I didn't. Don't get me wrong, I liked the book and the story, especially the way that the protagonist told her story through her discussions with her psychiatrist after she returns. But Annie was so abrasive, she was hard to like, and her captor was a seriously twisted individual. And it didn't quite make sense to me why he picked Annie to abduct.
Then I got to the second half of the book. Oh My God. The book really took off. As Annie begins to talk more about things that happened to her after she escaped and returned home, I couldn't get enough. I began to see what all the raving was about and realized that I was probably going to score this book pretty high.
Then I got to the last few chapters and the end. OMG. This book met my number one criteria for a thriller, I DID NOT see this ending coming. WOW. The ending definitely solidified a 5-star rating for me.
Chevy Stevens sure know how to tell a story! Her characters were wonderful. Annie is wonderfully flawed, as you would be if you had been held captive by a psychopath for a year. Her relationships with her family, friends, and the RCMP officer working her case were spot on. In retrospect, I even love her detailed description of Annie's captivity as it gives you the proper perspective for events that happen later in the book.
This is the debut by this author, but I sure hope that she continues to write. I will certainly be looking forward to her next effort.