Reader reviews and comments on The Stolen Child, plus links to write your own review.

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The Stolen Child

A Novel

By Keith Donohue

The Stolen Child
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Hardcover: May 2006,
    336 pages.
    Paperback: May 2007,
    384 pages.

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There are currently 7 reader reviews for The Stolen Child
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Diana (04/27/11)

Amazing.
Just amazing. I felt so bad when I had to close the book one last time, and had to say goodbye to Mota and Aniday (forgive me if I don't know the names in English. There was one copy left at the bookstore, it was in Spanish and that book just lured me into reading it).

Not to mention I shared the anxiety and hatred the new Henry Day felt towards his old life and the monsters of his past, coming back into his life and taking his own child away. Just an amazing story, really.
Elizabeth (07/31/10)

Haunting
Fairies, trees, switching places, family, trust, secrets, longing to return........

Henry Day was tired of babysitting his sisters and ran into the woods after his mother insisted that he help more with them. The changelings took him that very afternoon.

The changelings steal children after watching their daily routines for about a year to see if the child is the right one for the change and if it is the life the fairy would want to live. The "stolen" child who replaces the fairy has to adapt to new surroundings, learn new things, and become used to a new life without any familiar people or family. The fairy duplicate usually makes out better since he knew everything about the stolen child and his family thus making acclamation to the new life in the human world a lot easier.

The changelings that lived in the forest were scavengers, thieves, and had mean dispositions....they ate bugs, berries, killed rabbits and squirrels, and stole things from the humans…they went directly into homes and businesses. The descriptions of their antics, how they lived, and what they did “grabbed” you so much that it made you afraid to go into the back yard in case they were hiding there doing their nightly stealing of clothes off the line or food in the houses since they could slip through any cracks by making their bodies squeeze thin. :)

The book goes back and forth describing the lives of the switched children...each telling his story...the one growing into adulthood and the other remaining a child.

A childhood stolen is what I would call what happened...I felt bad for the AniDay (Henry Day), the child who was taken by the changelings and went into the fairy world...he seemed to have a difficult time with the change…he wanted to go back, but couldn’t…he had to wait his turn. It would be difficult to forget everything from your past, but eventually they do.

The book was interesting, definitely different, and also so mysterious that you couldn't stop reading, but you also kept looking over your shoulder...
Valerie (06/26/10)

Love this story
I first rented this as an audio book for a long road trip, I absolutely fell in love with the story and purchased the book as soon as I arrived at my destination. The imagery and simple story telling captivate me and I have read the book at least six times in the past year .
Aledrain (10/12/09)

A woven masterpiece of a story
Stolen Child is a great book, and recommend to all ages. The book is at first tedious, but then you get to the core and you can't wait to see what comes next, and you began to see the real story behind it all, the alienation folds away, and there are human emotions. The book was a masterpiece, they way he made you feel so alienated at the beginning then you see and feel as the child and changeling might.
A brilliant read.
Nancy stevenson armstrong (09/12/07)

the stolen child
This is the best book I have read in a long time
I fell in love with all of the characters.
Courtney (07/16/07)

Failed to mesmerize
The Stolen Child did not live up to my expectations at all. I was rather excited about reading the book, since I had heard nothing but rave reviews over it. It was picked as the selection for my most current reading group, and overall the feeling was that the book, while being ok, never captivated us, or pulled us in. I am not sorry that I took the time to read it, but I won’t spend the time to re-read it in the future as I do with other books that blow me out of the water. The writing was very well done and the story concept was a good one, but sadly the book, once finished, was forgotten and non-memorable.
Anne (05/23/06)

Haunting, and so moving!
I began this book completely convinced that I would not like it. I could not have been more wrong. This is an immediate classic, and for anyone who grew up reading The Chronicles of Narnia, and The Lord of the Rings ... well you will love this book. It is haunting, and heartbreaking ... yet beautiful!



The story alternates by chapter, telling us the journey of Henry Day, and the changeling that stole him away. The changelings steal children and change their appearance so that they can live the life of the child that they have stolen. All the while, the parents may suspect something is amiss, but cannot figure out what has changed about their child. Henry is now living the life of a changeling. Frozen in time as a child, living with a pack of other wild little changelings. They long to live again as human beings, but must wait their turn... usually a century or so. The changeling that is living Henry's life struggles with the guilt of taking over Henry's life, and the fear of being discovered for who he really is. All changelings were originally little human children who were stolen by the changelings. This is a story of longing, childhood, love, and loss.


I am amazed that this is Keith Donohue's first novel. He writes so eloquently, and the descriptive quality of his writing put me right into the world that he's created. I lost myself completely in this book. In fact I cried, unexpectedly. For anyone unsure if they are able to enjoy a book about changelings, fairies, etc,, don't let that keep you from this simply amazing work of literature.
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