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The Stolen Child | [Keith Donohue]

The Stolen Child

Seven-year-old Henry Day is kidnapped and renamed "Aniday" by changelings, ageless beings who inhabit the woods near his home. The changelings also leave behind one of their own, who flawlessly impersonates Henry except for one noteworthy detail: the new Henry is a prodigiously talented pianist.
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Publisher's Summary

This critically acclaimed debut by breakout author Keith Donohue flawlessly blends fantasy and realism into an utterly unique fable, inspired by a W.B. Yeats poem, that has been described as a bedtime story for adults.

Seven-year-old Henry Day is kidnapped and renamed "Aniday" by changelings, ageless beings who inhabit the woods near his home. The changelings also leave behind one of their own, who flawlessly impersonates Henry except for one noteworthy detail: the new Henry is a prodigiously talented pianist. Both Aniday and Henry settle comfortably enough into their new existences, but both are haunted by vague memories of their former lives.

A fresh take on the search for identity that will appeal to fans of J.R.R. Tolkien and J.M. Barrie, The Stolen Child triumphantly announces Donohue as a fresh voice in contemporary fiction.

©2006 Keith Donohue; (P)2006 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

  • Winner of Audio Publishers Association 2007 Audie Award, Science Fiction

"An impressive novel of outsiders whose feelings of alienation are more natural than supernatural." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (434 )
5 star
 (121)
4 star
 (136)
3 star
 (109)
2 star
 (46)
1 star
 (22)
Overall
3.7 (81 )
5 star
 (24)
4 star
 (23)
3 star
 (19)
2 star
 (12)
1 star
 (3)
Story
3.9 (80 )
5 star
 (30)
4 star
 (25)
3 star
 (15)
2 star
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1 star
 (3)
Performance
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  •  
    Jon Virginia Beach, VA, USA 06-20-06
    Jon Virginia Beach, VA, USA 06-20-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    43
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Not Anything Close to the Hype"

    Boo! This book was bad. I listened to it in a straight shot during a 14-hour drive across 4 states. My biggest problem was the main story-telling device of the book -- one story would plod along in one person's perspective and then, we'd have to hear essentially the same story told again from a different person's perspective. This would be interesting if there were more going on and there were perspectives being told by more than two people. But it felt so redundant and in turn I just didn't care at all for these characters. The writer clearly understands description, but really fell apart in his interactions between people. These people felt more like caricatures more than characters. As a result, the book REALLY didn't work for me. There's a better book out there that uses a very similar story-telling device, but is much more successful in its iteration. It's called "The History of Love", by Nicole Krauss. I'd urge you to read that book instead. Sorry, Mr. Donohue. Two stars from me.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angela Lancaster, SC, USA 06-04-06
    Angela Lancaster, SC, USA 06-04-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    1
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "agonizing listen"

    I am a big fan of the fantasy genre. The publisher's comparison to Tolkien was wishful thinking. I found the plot an interesting concept, but listening was arduous. I did want to know how the story ended, but each additional chapter caused me to groan anew, "Will it never end?"

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susanne Longmont, CO, United States 06-10-06
    Susanne Longmont, CO, United States 06-10-06
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Unique"

    A very unique story, I'm glad that I chose it. I found it to be captivating and easy to visualize while I was sewing. I only gave it 4 stars because I usually like to purchase 30-40 hour long unabridged tales. Sorry this one stopped, I could have listened to it all week.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mara P Alameda, CA 11-22-07
    Mara P Alameda, CA 11-22-07 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    134
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    "Good (not great) story"

    I am only giving this story three stars because I did not love it and I did not hate it, I was sort of in the middle. I love fantasy books and was really excited to listen to this book, but it did not live up to my expectations. For me, the story of the changelings living in the forest and the power struggles that existed in their community was the most interesting part of the story. Henry Day's story was rather dull and got more interesting as he began to explore his history (pre-changeling). I thought the narrators were good, even though it was hard to distinguish their voices.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dudley Michigan 09-13-07
    Dudley Michigan 09-13-07 Member Since 2004

    morgan56

    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    44
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Disappointed"

    The idea of the book was very intrigueing. This is the type of story I like - fantasy. Unfortunately, the book was disappointing. I got bored. I am not sure if anything actually happened in the book.....

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura NYC, NY, USA 06-06-07
    Laura NYC, NY, USA 06-06-07 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    38
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    114
    12
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "But do I care for them?"

    I can't say I do. I tried to listen - to involve myself in the story, but it was slow... and plodding... and ultimately, I really didnt care about either character.

    I suppose if you really like character studies this would work for you, but if you really want a story... with a plot and some feeling, I would find something else. This seems to be a book you either love or really dont have the stomach to finish.

    Out of all the audio books I have ever listened to, this one was only one of two I just couldn''t bring myself to complete.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robin Carriere, MS, USA 09-25-08
    Robin Carriere, MS, USA 09-25-08 Member Since 2003
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    "best book ever"

    I loved the book it was so good I hope that a second book is made I liked aniday he was varey good

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann B. Williams Katonah, NY United States 09-12-07
    Ann B. Williams Katonah, NY United States 09-12-07 Member Since 2003

    puginator

    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    457
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Good Listen"

    It was an entertaining story

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Hain Baltimore, MD United States 09-08-07
    D. Hain Baltimore, MD United States 09-08-07 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    86
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Will steal you away!"

    The story follows the interconnected lives of the main characters by alternating between each of their versions of events. It's very interesting to get to see the same story from two viewpoints. The author had me hooked immediately, and this is one of the few books I couldn't just listen to in the car only.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Suzanne H NYC 02-26-07
    Suzanne H NYC 02-26-07 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    192
    21
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
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    Overall
    "Dreary"

    I found this listen to be dark and dreary. I don't mind the dark part. It was the dreary part that got to me. I was very depressed listening to it. Nothing about it had me on the edge of my seat, excited to find out what would happen next. There wasn't much goodness in this book's world. And it was hard to find someone to like. I thought the story might help me escape the pressures of the real world, but when I finished it only confirmed that the real world is much better.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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