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Cemetery Girl Hardcover – 1 January 2011
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- Publisher : New American Library NAL; Book Club edition (1 January 2011)
- Language : English
- ISBN-10 : 1617932892
- ISBN-13 : 978-1617932892
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This is truly a very traumatic time for Tom and Abbey as they try to piece their lives back together with their daughter who is now 16 and no longer the child they 'lost' but one who is all but grown up and with a very different street-wise manner.
This book explores Stockholm syndrome where the victim resonates with the perpetrator and they don't believe they have done anything wrong even though they may have been beaten, starved, raped and abused whilst in their grip.
I loved the way Mr Bell told Tom's side of the story, telling it from a man's point of view (lol) but with all the emotion, rage, uncertainty and depth of feeling of how a Father would feel in this situation. I also felt that in contrast Abbey's character was lacking the warmth and emotional depth that a woman would have been feeling in this situation.
However I really felt for Tom and Abbey imagining what I would have done in the same situation, their emotional roller-coaster ride was harrowing to say the least. Tom's compulsive need to know the 'truth' of what happened causes him to behave in an irresponsible manner at times but you can sympathize with his torment.
I can only hope that with all the counselling, love and devotion of friends and family members and just tons of patience that victims can reach a measure of recovery in real life.
Thank you David for a compelling read, I look forward to reading your next book.
However, something just didn't sit right with me for the rest of the book, and looking back on it now, there were some odd bits that don't seem to make sense now. For instance, Liann - why did she seem to play such an important part at the start and then completely fizzle out towards the end? And Caitlin being described as a 'secretive child' wasn't really backed up with anything other than the incident with the near-miss car accident, yet it seemed to play a big part in the way Tom felt when she returned to them 4 years later. Pastor Chris, I imagine, was supposed to be an irritating character who was intended to rile the reader with his patronising ways and overly-cheery demeanour, but again he was a character that seemed at one point integral to the story, but was simply phased out towards the end - were these characters intentional red herrings? And I think the conversations with Tom and his daughter's kidnapper were bizarre - would a father really so willingly speak to a paedophile/rapist/kidnapper who had snatched his daughter in such a calm and almost polite manner? I seem to think 'no'. That is where the book got a bit far-fetched and stringy for me, but I'm glad I kept reading, as it wasn't too bad overall. However, I got this for the bargain price of 99p - not worth spending £4.99 on.
This was a good read and I have ordered David Bell's next book The Hiding Place which is due out soon.