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Thursday, December 30, 2010

Review : Girl, Stolen by April Henry

Title : Girl, Stolen : A Novel
Author : April Henry
Publisher : Henry Holt Books for Young Readers
Genre : Young Adult, Suspense
ISBN : 978-0805090055
Series or Stand Alone : Stand Alone
Release Date : September 28, 2010
Rating : 4.5/5 Stars - Very Good

Description from Amazon :

Sixteen year-old Cheyenne Wilder is sleeping in the back of a car while her mom fills her prescription at the pharmacy. Before Cheyenne realizes what's happening, their car is being stolen--with her inside! Griffin hadn’t meant to kidnap Cheyenne, all he needed to do was steal a car for the others. But once Griffin's dad finds out that Cheyenne’s father is the president of a powerful corporation, everything changes—now there’s a reason to keep her. What Griffin doesn’t know is that Cheyenne is not only sick with pneumonia, she is blind. How will Cheyenne survive this nightmare, and if she does, at what price?


Cheyenne Wilder is lying in the back of her step-mother's SUV, awaiting her return from the inside of their local pharmacy.  Her step-mother, Danielle, didn't want to leave Cheyenne alone in the car, but she insisted, as long as she leave the keys just in case she needed to turn on the heat.  It's not long before the door of the SUV is opened, and quickly slammed shut.  This is the first thing that alerts Cheyenne to the odd behavior, as her step-mother has only just left to fill her prescription.  The next, is the smell, that is quite obviously not her step-mother's perfume.  While her ears and nose have done the job of telling her something is seriously wrong, her eyes have no way of confirming it, because she is blind.

Griffin hadn't meant to kidnap Cheyenne.  He just seen a really nice Escalade parked, with the keys in the ignition.  Who could be so dumb as to leave such an expensive car unattended?  He doesn't think about the consequences of stealing such a prized possession, he just hops in the drivers seat and peels out of the parking lot.  It's not long before he discovers he has made a huge mistake.  Cheyenne has revealed herself, and now he has no idea what to do.  He can't just let her go, because she'd just get him caught for stealing.  The only logical thing he can think to do, is take both the new ride, and the girl, back to his father for further instruction.

Upon meeting Cheyenne in this novel, I felt complete sympathy.  I had no idea how a blind girl would survive being kidnapped and held for ransom.  How would she defend herself if they felt the need to hurt her if she couldn't see them coming?  I was scared for her, and just wanted to pull her from such a horrible situation.  Despite Cheyenne's handicap, she clearly is a brave character.  She doesn't let her blindness interfere with her life, although it does make it more difficult.  Now she depends on her other senses in order to help her.

Griffin's character wasn't what I was expecting, at all.  The only obvious thing I could figure out was that he was from a troubled home, and I soon learned why.  His father wasn't the most legit person to associate yourself with.  He'd do pretty much anything to make a buck, including introducing a life of crime to his son.  It's no surprise that when Griffin is given an opportunity to impress his father, he takes it.  His mother is gone, and now his father is all he has, so why not make him proud?  I couldn't blame him for following through with the things his father expected of him, because it was all he knew.  I liked learning the history of Griffin's life, and hoped for a chance for him to come out clean in the end.

Each chapter in this book was narrated in turn by Cheyenne and Griffin.  They revealed their feelings, as well as their secrets.  I liked that it was narrated by both the victim and the kidnapper, because it gave you a better feel of the novel.  Despite it's change in narration, it never gave away what would happen at the end.  I was surprised by the quick turn of events toward the end of the book, and caught myself before I shouted.  It did however leave me a little stumped on the very last page, because it leaves one question unanswered, but I think you should read it to find out what.

In a novel where the main character is blind, April Henry will help you see.  It's new, original, and completely fresh.  It was nothing like I've ever read before, and I'm not sure if anything can compare.  It was different to see through the eyes of someone who was blind, while still seeing everything so vividly.  Cheyenne goes through life using her nose, ears, and hands to guide her, and Henry was able to give great descriptions of each of her experiences.

Read the first chapter.

Where did I get this book?

I received this ARC in order to participate in a traveling tour with Around the World Tours, hosted by Cindy @ Princess Bookie. (I am no longer participating in ATWT at this time.)

Amazon Affiliates

Clicking on title links in this post will redirect you to  If you happen to make a purchase after clicking these links I will receive a small percentage of the profits.  


April Henry said...

A belated thanks for your thoughtful review! I just turned in my next YA thriller. It's called The Night She Disappeared and it will come out in January 2012. It's about a pizza delivery girl who disappears and is believed to be dead. Two of her co-workers don't believe it and team up to find her.

Jenni @ Falling Off The Shelf said...

Your very welcome! Thanks so much for stopping by! I'm really looking forward to reading your next young adult title. It sounds very interesting. My sister's boyfriend happens to be a pizza delivery boy, so I at least know a little background about the job!