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Stolen Hardcover – October 1, 2008


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 5th - 8th
  • Lexile Measure: 860L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 158 pages
  • Publisher: Two Lions; First Edition edition (October 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761455159
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761455158
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,181,412 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 5–8—A 12-year-old girl is running through the woods with no memory of who she is or why she is running. Her identity is up for speculation throughout the book: Is she a princess? An animal turned into a human? The missing daughter of a couple in the village? All of these possibilities seem to revolve around an old witch who escaped the village mob with a baby the same day the girl appeared in the woods. The woman and her husband are convinced that the girl is their missing Isabelle, taken from the village by the witch six years earlier, but their older daughter, Honey, is skeptical and even hostile in her reaction. As the tale unfolds, some even suspect that the youngster is actually a creation of the old hag who was sent for evil purposes, and Isabelle wonders whether she really wants to know the truth. This is a solid fantasy and mystery that builds in intrigue and suspense as more layers are added to the story. The protagonist's true identity comes as a fantastic surprise and will have readers looking back for clues even as they shudder at the chain of events that brought about her appearance in the woods that fateful day. Like the witch, Vande Velde weaves a spell around her readers with this well-written tale.—Amanda Raklovits, Champaign Public Library, IL
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

The day the old witch’s cottage is burned by villagers, a child who doesn’t know her own identity appears at Avis and Browley’s door, and the couple takes her in. Convinced that she is Isabelle, a little girl that the witch had stolen six years before, Avis and Browley send word to Isabelle’s parents that their child is alive. Isabelle’s mother, Mady, is certain that the mysterious girl is her long-lost daughter. Father Frayne is hopeful, too, but bitter older sister Honey is skeptical. Surely this 12-year-old whom others claim to be Isabelle is an imposter! Twists and turns abound as Isabelle’s true identity is revealed and her life increasingly endangered. Vande Velde, noted for her well-crafted riffs on fairy tales, has written her darkest yet, a story of greed, jealousy, and insidious evil that will haunt the reader for some time to come. Grades 6-10. --Frances Bradburn

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Customer Reviews

A very nice book im glad I have read.
Tammy Petrey
Vivian Vande Velde is a master at writing short books while weaving characters and plots with unexpected depth.
small review
One thing that was missing from the story was a bit of romance - which VVV writes really well.
History_Girl

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By small review on July 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The story opens with a witch huddled in her home with a baby as an angry mob of villagers break down her door and set fire to her house. Why? Because she is a witch who has stolen one too many of the villagers' children. As the opening chapter ends, the witch casts two spells of unknown effect. The next chapter opens with a young girl running frantically through the woods near the witch's home with no memory of who she is or how she got there. She is taken in by a kind family, but the mystery of her identity and the witch's two spells haunt this story as it twists and turns through the past and present, and truth, lies, and misunderstandings.

Don't be deceived by the shortness of this book. Vivian Vande Velde is a master at writing short books while weaving characters and plots with unexpected depth. Stolen is no exception, and it keeps the reader guessing until the very end while tugging at both heartstrings and concepts of morality. Recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Timothy Mueller-Harder on November 20, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This book is about a girl who has lost her memory and the story of an old witch. The ending was completely unexpected in the good kind of way. The first signs of what is really happening only appear two pages before it is revealed. Wonderful book!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Lawral Wornek on June 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Let me start off by saying that this book is never as spooky as the cover would suggest. There may be an old witch, and there is certainly rampant speculation about said witch and what she might do out there all alone in the forest, but this book isn't about her. It's about Isabelle. Also, there is someone a lot more scary than a witch, but that person is scary in a much different way than what the cover advertises. This person inspires a slow build of scary rather than a jump out and grab you scary. I say this because I certainly wouldn't have picked this book up when I was in late elementary/early middle school (I was kind of a wimp), but I probably would have really loved the story inside.

The girl who might be Isabelle gets thrown into a lot of drama, right from the get-go. She's bitten by a hunting dog that is looking for a witch. When she begins to recover from that, she has to tell the family that took her in that she remembers nothing about her own life. Just when she starts to come to terms with that, the folks who might be her family come to claim her. The newly stolen baby was their daughter as well. Their joy at having Isabelle back is tempered by worry about the baby. There is so much pain in this family; Isabelle wants to be their missing daughter, if only to allow them to avoid the pain of losing a daughter all over again. Then Isabelle meets Honey, possibly her older sister, and she can tell that whether Isabelle is the "real" Isabelle or not, Honey wants her family to have nothing to do with her.

Isabelle has some memory; she knows how to spin wool and she knows she was never a princess, for example. She can still navigate the world she's found herself in, even if she has no idea what her place is in it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jo Strader on March 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This was a delightful read. Even though I knew what was coming, it did not lessen my enjoyment. I was surprised by one of the characters after all which only deepened my liking of this story. This was a quick read and yet Vande Velde managed to create characters that you care about and some that you hate.
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Format: Hardcover
This is the first book of Velde's I have read and I found myself enjoying the story line. Isabelle is a young girl who has no memory of who she is. The story begins with Isabelle running in the forest with a pack of hunting dogs tight on her heels. Just when she thinks the dogs will be the death of her, she pulled into unconsciousness. Then she awakens she finds she has been taken in by a peasant family - Avis and Browley - and their young daughter, Ravyn.

Ravyn is a six year old who is determined Isabelle was a Princess stolen away by the legendary witch from the forest. Apparently this witch has been stealing away young children for many years - the children are never seen or heard from again. Ravyn enjoys weaving a new life for Isabelle out of her curious imagination.

Just when Isabelle is starting to feel comfortable with the peasant family, another family appears, claiming she is their daughter who was stolen away six years earlier. This poor family had recently has a second child stolen away, a newborn only one months old. The mother is determined that the young girl is her daughter, Isabelle, but the oldest daughter, Honey, is convinced this girl is not her long lost sister.

But all is not what it seems with Isabelle's "supposed" family and she begins to wonder if they are claiming her in order to gain an inheritance from a rich aunt, whom Isabelle is named after.

This book has a happy ending, but not the ending I was anticipating. Just when I thought I knew how the story would end, Velde gives the story an unusual twist.

This small book - 158 pages - was a different kind of young adult book and I read it in one sitting. Not your normal young adult fantasy book, this story is more along the lines of the wonderful fairy tales I read as a child. Stolen has increased my desire to read other books by Vivian Vande Velde.
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Format: Hardcover
The same day villagers finally hunt down a witch in the woods, a pre-teen appears with no memory of her past. Is there a connection between the two? Isabelle's only memory is of a mysterious chant: could she have been stolen by the witch of the woods, or lost her memory? Satisfying supernatural mystery abounds in this riveting novel for middle to high school readers.
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