Simon & Schuster BFYR
Source: ARC from publisher for review
THE STORY (from Goodreads)
When a teen is held hostage, her efforts to escape uncover a conspiracy that forces her to question everything in this psychological thriller with a twist of forbidden romance.
They told her not to worry—
because the man who shot her father was in custody.
They told her that she was safe—
because security had been increased.
All it took was one opportunity, one breach,
and then she was theirs. Kidnapped, confined, alone.
They told her she could go home when their demands were met.
That it wouldn’t take long, because she was the prime minister’s daughter.
But it has been days, and still no help has come.
She wonders when they will tire of this game and kill her.
She cannot wait around for that to happen; she will escape. She has to.
Captive draws us in immediately, a quick flashback to Robyn’s father bleeding on the snow in Paris yanking us into this story before we’re flipped back to the present and the building tensions that lead to Robyn’s kidnapping.
Robyn starts out handling her kidnapping in a way we only hope we ourselves would if we were ever in her shoes, managing to stay sharp and calm as she evaluates both her kidnappers and the environment in which she’s kept. She uses every available opportunity to free herself but doesn’t take unnecessary risks, making survival her number one priority and escape her second. Her time with Scar, Feather and Talon is broken up by flashbacks to her time in Paris with her dad (who’s also the British Prime Minister), connective threads between the two events slowly but surely forming until the whole truth is revealed and Robyn finds herself having to look at her world through entirely new eyes.
While Robyn is strong, smart and beautifully level-headed in the first half of this story, the second half sees a marked slip in believability, the realistic stress and tension of a horrific situation giving way to a more fantastical showdown between Robyn, her kidnappers and those attempting to rescue her. The romance between her and Talon (one of the people holding her hostage) is understandable for the most part–Robyn latching on to the one person who offers her the smallest of kindnesses in a life or death situation–but her affection for him leads her wildly astray in the concluding chapters. Chaos and unlikely scenarios ensue, detracting from the heart-pounding realism of the first half and leaving us wishing this thriller had ended as strongly as it started.
Overall Captive is a lightning-quick and enjoyable read, but the shift in Robyn from a savvy heroine who keeps calm under pressure to a young woman who risks everything for a boy she just met keeps this one from a higher rating.
*I think it does the first half a disservice to split the difference and give an overall rating of 3.5, so I've done separate ratings instead:)
First half: 4/5
Second half: 3/5
This book was sent to me by the publisher free of charge for the purpose of a review.
I received no other compensation and the above is my honest opinion.