Annie O'Sullivan tells the story of her abduction and captivity through sessions with her psychologist. A realtor, Annie was hosting an open house when a man posing as an interested buyer, kidnapped Annie at gunpoint. He held her captive in a secluded cabin for a year before she escaped. Through her sessions with the psychologist she attempts to come to terms with what happened to her and how she can assimilate back into her normal life.
Chevy Stevens' debut novel made a lot of noise when it was released last year. It took me awhile but I finally was able to experience it for myself. She definitely set her bar high with Book 1. Stevens' choice to tell the story in first person and all through monologue of Annie talking to her psychologist brought out the mixture of anger, frustration and fear. It also works to take the reader out of his/her comfortable position as observer. STILL MISSING is a very powerful and uncomfortable read.
Another effect of Stevens' choice of narration is the 360 degree view that the reader sees of Annie. Then the flatter view of those around her heightens the good and bad of their characters. I think that really ramps up the emotion of the story.
The plot is well developed and tightly written. For the feint of heart, this might be a little challenging. Stevens doesn't coddle her reader; she's exploring an ugly subject and the events reflect that, but they never reach a gratuitous level.
There were a rare few oddities for me throughout STILL MISSING but nothing that deterred me from enjoying the experience of reading it. For those who are like me and a wee bit behind, let me recommend for you STILL MISSING. Chevy Stevens second novel is coming out in a few weeks and I'll definitely be following up with that one.
I listened to STILL MISSING on audio, narrated by Angela Dawe. This was my first experience with Dawe as a narrator and I think she did a splendid job. The style of the novel didn't challenge her with a lot of character voices but it was a highly emotional text. Dawes balanced the emotions of the novel expertly and enhanced the effect. STILL MISSING is a great book for audio.
STILL MISSING was produced for audio by Brilliance (ISBN: 978-1455838530) and is available in print from St. Martin's Press (hardcover ISBN: 978-031259567) and St. Martin's Griffin (trade paper ISBN: 978-0312573577).