When Griffin slips into the Cadillac Escalade, its keys left in the ignition at the mall parking lot, he only means to steal it as a gift for his father. Within seconds he realizes that he’s stolen a girl too. In April Henry’s suspenseful and well-researched Girl, Stolen, 16-year-old Cheyenne Wilder, resting in the backseat while her stepmother runs into the pharmacy to pick up her prescription, is not only suffering from pneumonia, but has been blind for the last three years. Is escape even possible for her?
The spine-tingling chapters alternate between the teens’ perspectives as Griffin delivers both the vehicle and the girl to his cruel father, Roy. While Cheyenne plots to outwit her captors, flee Roy’s home in a remote wooded area and gather as much information as possible to turn over to police when (or if) she’s rescued, readers learn more about the accident that took Cheyenne’s mother and sight. And as Griffin, a high-school dropout with a troubled background and grief of his own, begins to see his surroundings in a whole new light, he wonders if he’s as much a bad guy as Roy and his accomplices, who are busy plotting how to use and dispose of Cheyenne. Perhaps Cheyenne is not the only victim in this escalating dilemma.
Reminiscent of Gail Giles’ thrillers and tension-filled to the last sentence, Girl, Stolen will resonate with readers long after the cover is closed. With a thoughtful and eye-opening look at disabilities, it highlights Cheyenne and Griffin’s resourcefulness and resiliency as they save themselves—and possibly each other.