Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Captive” as Want to Read:
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


3.31  ·  Rating details ·  333 ratings  ·  80 reviews
When a teen is held hostage, her efforts to escape uncover a conspiracy that forces her to question everything in this psychological thriller with a twist of forbidden romance.

They told her not to worry—
because the man who shot her father was in custody.
They told her that she was safe—
because security had been increased.

All it took was one opportunity, one breach,
and then
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published November 3rd 2015 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published January 1st 2015)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Captive, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Captive

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.31  · 
Rating details
 ·  333 ratings  ·  80 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Captive
Donna {Book Passion For Life}
As soon as I heard about Captive by A.J. Grainger I was instantly intrigued. The plot of the story sounded interesting and I couldn’t recall reading anything that sounded like it, however, while Captive had some positive things about it, it failed to hold my attention.

As the Prime Minister’s daughter, Robyn Knollys-Green is always in the public eye. Nothing goes unnoticed, especially after a failed attempt on her father’s life put her in the spotlight even more. But when Robyn is kidnapped and h
Mar 23, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: needs-review-lol
Possible 2.5 star. Let's get real here, it was terribly underwhelming. Full Review To Come.

To avoid being my snarky snark self, I'm going to keep this short and concise. Great topics tackled--kidnap, conspiracy, corruption by leadership heads, extremism, the ethical lines blurred around pharmaceutical testing. Downfalls sat with the narrator, the blandness of the tail (why, with a premise like that is beyond me), the horrible attempt at characterisation and character motivation. Way too mu
Sarah Elizabeth
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Simon and Schuster UK Children's and NetGalley.)

This was an okay story, but I did struggle to stay focused on this.

I didn’t really love any of the characters in this book, none of them really irritated me, but then they didn’t really engender any strong feelings at all. I can’t say I really cared what happened to any of them really.

The storyline in this just didn’t really hold my attention well at all,
Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)
See more of my reviews on The YA Kitten! My copy was an ARC I got from the publisher via Edelweiss.

Diversity Rating: 0 - What Diversity?

Disability: 0
Intersectionality: 0

If you've read and liked Stolen by Lucy Christopher, then I like you and we should be friends. You're probably hoping Captive will be in much the same vein even though Robyn of this novel is held hostage by a terrorist group akin to Peta on crack so they can blackmail her father into releasing a com
Recommend: Well, it's an alright YA read.

Robyn's dad is the British prime minister, and someone wants him dead. Now Robyn is being held captive - but who is really at fault?

The short pitch is the most accurate. I’ve read longer pitches which say things like ‘A list celebrity’ and ‘global corruption’... I know a blurb is meant to sell a book, but it’s always funny when you read the pitch after the novel and find that things just don’t match up. I would have enjoyed this novel a little more if I h
Oct 13, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-to-review
Actual rating - 2.5

(I received a copy from Netgalley, in echange for an honest review.)

This one just couldn't keep my interest unfortunately.

I felt quite sorry for Robyn when she was kidnapped, but other than that i didn't feel anything for her.

The pacing in this one was too slow for me, and most of the things that happened didn't interest/excite me.
I felt like i was waiting for Robyn to be kidnapped for ages, but it was actually only about 10%. It dragged even more than that further on into
Sydney Crawford
Jun 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read the book "Captive" by A.J. Grainger. It is about a girl named Robyn who gets kidnapped by extremists. She is held hostage in order to get her dad to give over a "terrorist". This is a very good book because it keeps you on the edge every page.
This book has a lot of plot twists, causing you to really dive deep into the information you are told. You are forced to question everything about the characters and the plot. Due to the constant plot twists, you are always trying to figure out what
Hannah Nagle
May 25, 2018 rated it did not like it
Shelves: ya-mg, no-thanks
Wow this was so terrible.

(view spoiler)
Rachel (aka Ms4Tune)
note: 2015-Popsugar-Reading-Challenge #10 A Mystery or Thriller


My review can also be found HERE

‘Word’s are a powerful weapon. A single word can change a destiny. You wouldn’t waste a bullet – or a nuclear warhead. Don’t waste a word.’ Loc 791

Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for a chance to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

Captive is an interesting thriller that encompasses terrorism and celebrity culture within its themes. I’ve always found celebrity life fascinating. I
May 10, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I couldn't suspend disbelief long enough with this one. The kidnappers were the cliché stereotypical bad guys, right down to their awful nicknames (Scar, Talon and Feather. Yeah, seriously). Robyn and her family didn't seem to have a lot of security on their journey, despite the heightened level of threat, but even so I found myself doubting whether Feather et al. really had the intelligence and connections to pull off a successful car bomb.

Scar was such a pantomime villain with his lecherous lo
Michelle (Fluttering Butterflies)
Stronger first half. I didn't quite feel the connection between the two love interests but I liked how much of the story felt like it was about asking difficult questions and about taking responsibility for your actions. Full review soon!

Full review:

I wasn't quite sure what to expect from Captive by A. J. Grainger. It's a book by a debut author and I hadn't heard very much about it when I first read it. I even requested it on NetGalley on an absolute whim ... and it turned out to be a whim that
3.5 stars

Captive is a new UKYA thriller from debut author A.J. Grainger and it's a great addition to the genre. This is the story of sixteen year old Robyn, daughter of the British Prime Minister, who has been taken hostage by environmental activists so they can use her as leverage to get one of their group members released from prison. Robyn has already witnessed an attack on her father but that was nothing compared to the terror she now faces as she is held prisoner by a group of masked assail
Nov 22, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Captive is a book that I've been excited to read for what feels like forever, It sounded so exciting and I never seem to get around to reading many YA thrillers - they don't seem to grab me as much. There was something about the back of this book that had me from the get go. I knew I had to read it. It didn't let me down. It was as complex, emotional and thrilling as I hoped it would be. I was excited to find out the motivation behind Robyn's kidnapping and how her character was going to be port ...more
Wow!!!! What a book! Captive is one of the most captivating (sorry) books I've read this year. From beginning to end I didn't want to put it down, because it was just so pulse pounding. It's one of those books you just can't put down, and I was hooked. I love a good kidnapping tale, especially with a feisty heroine, not willing to just give up and roll over and Robyn was amazing. If I were to ever be kidnapped, I want her spirit.

I loved the fact the novel was about a prime minister's daughter, t
Oct 13, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'd like to thank NetGalley and Simon and Schuster UK Children's for providing me with a free copy in exchange for an honest review.

This was an intriguing story, thanks to the political elements in it (I love it when books bring some political intrigue, and nothing is ever easy because of it). The fact that Robyn, the Prime Minister's daughter is kidnapped for political reason, as she is a very strong leverage against the leading politician of the United Kingdom.

I did feel, however, that the fir
Oct 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I must say I have been very excited about reading this book since it came onto my radar and I couldn't help but pick it up as soon as it dropped through my letter box

This is a perfect read for fans of Sophie McKenzie. It is fast paced and exciting. It leaves you with lots to think about and makes you not want to put it down until you've finished it in its entirety.

I really liked the main character Robyn and seeing her story unfold and I liked getting that different insight into the running of a
Jan 10, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Meh. I've definitely read better hostage books over the years- I don't think this book ever really tried for Stockholm syndrome, it just went straight to nauseating young love. Puke! Add that to the fact that both characters were completely devoid of personality, and we have ourselves another bad book for the year!

I've actually had this book for ages and haven't read it, maybe I should have left it on the shelf? Suffice to say not really for me and moving on. Two stars.
Oct 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I haven't come across many (any?) YA political thrillers before, so this felt really fresh. Well written, with a really satisfying ending.
Rachel Consoli
Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2019
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I open my eyes. The cell is flooded with sunlight; the window is a slice of pale blue. Dust particles dance in the sparkling light, pirouetting in a golden line from the window to the opposite wall of the cell, where they seem to converge into shapes. It is like looking into a kaleidoscope

I was instantly intruiged when i found Captive by A.j Grainger, well because im a sucker for these types of thrillers, and as many dissapointing reviews i read i wasnt sure if i was going to like it or not, but
Georgia's Book World
I absolutely loved Captive. I found it very gripping. I couldn't put it down. I can see why some people didn't like the relationship between Robyn and Talon but I liked it. Normally with gripping books it doesn't take me very long to read it but because I love this book i was deliberately reading it slowly and also I've been busy. I love these type of books. A.J Grainger (Annalee) has written about very important topics that still happen to these days and it was a very good idea to write about i ...more
Jun 30, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Jesus Christ, I want to feel sorry for her cause obviously she’s been through something terrible and is just trying to cope, but God, her head is shoved so far up her own ass she doesn’t realize that the boy she “loves”, fucking KIDNAPPED her. She’s so concerned about that fact that her father did something bad, yet doesn’t acknowledge the fact that she was KIDNAPPED by the boy she’s trying to suck faces with. I can’t. The entire time I found myself hoping they’d all die.
Emma VS
A decent read. Slightly irritating in that, although no spelling or punctuation mistakes, there were some grammar mistakes (namely in 'me and you' vs. 'you and I' etc.), but that is just me being picky!

It was a nice, quick read: perfect for a train journey etc. I enjoyed the story but it was predictable and it is unlikely I will read it again. The characters were relatively well developed, but in a slightly cliche way.
Becky Rendon
Jul 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Captive is a YA story that is sure to rile up its readers. The Prime Minister's daughter is kidnapped. The details are fuzzy and the reasons

The story of her time in that place is scary, sad, and has some fleeting happy. But she is still captive.

I enjoyed it and found it an easy read (when it's not left on a plane). I will be keeping my eyes open for more from this author.
Jul 30, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: slow-paced
It was good at the start, but after a few chapters i lost interest, i couldn't resonate with the main character, personally, i felt like the author did a poor job of creating likeable characters, and the plot itself was extremely slow paced, i was waiting for some action that never came and when it did took a long time too, the concept was interesting though
Feb 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed the book and was intrigued throughout. It was about what I expected. I liked Robyn as a character but that’s about all. She was not an overly memorable character just your run of the mill teen girl character. It was fairly predictable, but I’m okay with that. It was a quick read and I would recommend the book.
Santana Clark
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Why do I keep reading books with Stockholm syndrome, ship the characters, then get depressed once I finish the book because they obviously can’t be together? Someone stop me from reading this type of book! But a very intriguing read I read in one sitting and would very much recommend.
Alexandra Lopes-Alves
This book wasn't as bad as i thought it was going to be, i found myself interested enough in the plot but this book was OK to me, a little bit cringy with the love stuff going on. but over all pretty decent.
Apr 11, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Actual rating: 2.50ish

Read it a while ago, randomly came across it today while cleaning my bookshelves. It wasn't a bad book, the writing and plot were alright, but it was a bit underwhelming, nothing really ground-breaking about it. It's a quick, simple and enjoyable read.
« previous 1 3 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Girl, Unframed
  • The Lucky Ones
  • Stolen: A Letter to My Captor
  • Comfort Food
  • Yes No Maybe So
  • The Girl from Everywhere (The Girl from Everywhere, #1)
  • The Sight (Warriors: Power of Three, #1)
  • Toffee
  • The Next Together (The Next Together, #1)
  • Deadline
  • The Wolf Wilder
  • Letters in the Dark
  • Silence is Goldfish
  • Finders Keepers
  • Pig-Heart Boy
  • Three Hours
  • The State of Us
  • Tornado Brain
See similar books…
A. J. Grainger was born in Reading, where she went to the same school as Jane Austen but not at the same time. She now lives in London with her husband and works as a children’s books editor. She loves writing and editing because it means she gets to talk about books all day. She likes novels with plenty of twists and turns that keep you guessing right up until the end. She is also a total sucker ...more

Related Articles

If you love discovering great stories from new voices, then the past few months have been quite a treat in the world of young adult fiction!...
43 likes · 43 comments
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »