The Innocent by Taylor Stevens: A Religious Cult Kidnapping Thriller
The Innocent Author Taylor Stevens
Eight years ago, a man walked five-year-old Hannah out the front doors of her school and spirited her over the Mexican border, taking her into the world of a cult known as The Chosen. For eight years, followers of The Prophet have hidden the child, moving her from country to country, shielding the man who stole her. Now, those who’ve searched the longest know where to find her. They are childhood survivors of The Chosen, thirty-somethings born and raised inside the cult who’ve managed to make lives for themselves on the outside. They understand the mindset, the culture within that world, and turn to Vanessa Michael Munroe for help, knowing that the only possibility of stealing Hannah back and getting her safely out of Argentina is to trust someone who doesn’t trust them, and get Munroe on the inside.
Review: The worst has happened, someone thought it'd be a great marketing technique to compare this book to Steig Larsson's seriesThe Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. Honestly, who wants to read a rip-off of the same thing? I was skeptical, but relief came when I realized I actually did enjoy this book. There are some similarities to Larsson's thrillers, but not a hijack of the bandwagon. Set in Buenos Aries, the search to locate The Chosen's various haven cult houses moves steadily and at a good pace. You won't have to wade through 600 pages of tiny print to get to the end. However, I felt there was enough description, action and background given to make this a feasibly believable story. It is incredible, but the building blocks are there, and everything is checked off and in place. Explanations are given, without lengthy pages of reasoning. I liked the get-to-the point approach and strong characters. My attachment to them was a bit lacking, but I did not read the first book and took that into consideration, placing the fault on myself, not the author. I'd recommend taking this book along on vacation or picking up when in the mood for a snatch and grab thriller. Not a deep-thinking mystery, but contains action and an interesting plot-line that will entertain and hold the readers interest to the final page. *ARC provided for review by Amazon Vine courtesy of the Crown Publishing Group