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Eleven Hours

3.58  ·  Rating details ·  3,410 ratings  ·  193 reviews
One pregnant woman.
One deranged man.
Eleven hours of hell.

Abducted from a shopping mall in Dallas, Didi Wood, in her ninth month of pregnancy, is taken on the most dangerous, horrifying ride of her life, as a madman drives her across Texas. While her husband and the FBI try furiously to track them down, they can only hope to find Didi -- and her unborn child -- alive.
Paperback, 320 pages
Published October 15th 1999 by St. Martin's Press (first published 1998)
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3.58  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,410 ratings  ·  193 reviews

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Nov 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: donated-owned
So glad I am reading more books of a 'thrilling' nature!

This ripper of a book packed a quick, fast punch. It covers, as the title suggests, an eleven hour time frame, where there's no room for anything else but good solid reading, that I did not want to put down for a moment. Everything there is to like is here, as nine month pregnant Didi is enjoying the air con in the dead of summer, minding her own business and filling in time till she meets up with her loving husband, Rich, for lunch. This
Feb 26, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction
Extremely forgettable. I have finished it 5 minutes ago and I already struggle to remember what this book was all about.

Painfully cartoonish, monochromatic characters, and a dull and predictable plot with abundant platitudes littering the narrative, all strongly characterize this book and make it an excruciating reading experience; moreover, the leading character is so painfully stupid, in her mixture of dumb consumerism and Christian fundamentalism , that the only missing ingredient in her sto
Jan 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, own-read
Nine months pregnant Didi Wood had a little over an hour to kill after her doctor’s appointment before she met her husband Rich for lunch. She decided to go to a nearby shopping centre where it was air conditioned – it was a crushingly hot day – she needed to get some wooden blocks for her daughter Amanda; a few other bits and pieces. She wouldn’t be late for lunch with Rich but she would enjoy her slow wander around the shopping centre. When a young man offered to carry her bags, she declined t ...more
Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*
EXCERPT: Didi wanted to speak but found she was made speechless by her heart ramming itself against her chest. She didn't need to turn around. She recognized his voice. It was the manin the jacket. She felt slightly nauseated.

'Did you hear me, ma'am?' the voice said. 'You shouldn't be carrying those heavy bags. It's not good for the baby.'

Didi turned around.

The man was standing in front of her, hands in his jacket pockets. The heat index was up to 120 and he was wearing a jacket over his white
Mar 19, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: read-in-2012
I don't know exactly why but I keep reading other novels by Paullina Simons looking for the same feeling "The Bronze Horseman" trilogy left me, which I devoured in no time (and they are not short books at all!).
This is my second book by Simons after the trilogy, and again, I feel more than disappointed, I feel disgusted.
No trace of the smart and subtle prose of her most acclaimed series, just another impossibly likable characters in a superficial story not believable at all...

In this "thriller",
Jan 26, 2011 rated it it was ok
This is a book that was hard to put down. The tension rose. Poor Didi! From shopping the mall, munching on almond pretzels, her day just went steadily downhill. The pain, the thirst, the worry, the heat, the dirt and the blood all mounted up, and the poor reader is trapped there with her. It's an uncomfortable and unpleasant ride, but there's no escape. Not until the end. The suspense was killing.

I read it as quickly as I possibly could. Within the span of a day, which is pretty good for me now.
Stef Rozitis
Kind of excruciating. The guy is a stereotype of every creep and psycho ever written and the plot moves really slowly over exactly what he says and does.

Didi is not very likeable. She's an empty-headed "little woman" who married the boss and had kids and lives to shop (and even buys special expensive lingerie to give birth in). Not judging, just 11 hours with her is too long even if she does get tough (finally) and do something about the situation after trying everything else first (including re
Lisa Dunckley
Apr 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Scary, suspenseful story of an extremely pregnant woman who is kidnapped outside of a mall. From the beginning, with the slow stalking of Didi, with the creepy guy who is just slightly inappropriate and giving off the weird vibe, but who doesn't do anything obvious enough for Didi to scream for help or call 911 or ask mall security for help, the book is great. I think ALL women have been there—with a creepy weirdo who is asking to carry your bags, who is making you uncomfortable but it's such a ...more
Kerri Duff
Jun 28, 2018 rated it liked it
This held my interest to the end, but I wasn't able to really invest in the characters. In many ways this read like a book I'd read before - no surprises and not much suspense for a book about a kidnapping.
Tatum Williams
Oct 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Personal Response: I thought that “Eleven Hours” by Paullina Simons was a good book. It took me awhile to get into it but once I did it was hard to put down.
Plot: Didi Woods, at eight months pregnant, was shopping at the mall and this guy as she was walking to her car asked if she needed help with her bags. She said no thank you and kept walking but he followed her to her car. He said that she was hurting herself and the baby because she was carrying those bags. Once she go to the side of her va
Sep 30, 2010 rated it it was ok
This book was only written two years before the Bronze Horseman, and it was so incredibly different and so badly written (comparatively) that I feel very fortunate I didn't read this first. I surely would never have read the Tatiana and Alexander series.

This was a really quick read, and had an interesting angle...pregnant woman kidnapped from the mall for no apparent reason, guy is a psychopath, doting husband knows she is missing very quickly, etc etc. I could identify with Didi, because even t
May 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
GRIPPING. i couldnt put this book down until i finished it (about 11 hours as it happens) and even after finishing, i sat feeling quite dazed, the story has quite an impact. excellent read, one that i'd go back to quite happily but only if i had time to read it from cover to cover, absorbing
May 25, 2011 rated it liked it
Sometimes it seems like Simons is two different authors. She moves between brilliance and mediocrity so easily. This was down the mediocrity end. Not terrible, readable, but she's capable of so much more
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"A heavily pregnant young woman is leaving the shopping mall to head home on a horribly hot day in Texas. Her normal life of shopping, husband, children, with the extra excitement of the imminent baby, stretches before her. And then she is bundled into a car and kidnapped by a desperate young man."
Feb 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing. Harrowing. Gripping from page 1 to the last.

The story is strong I think because of the bravery of the subject. Paullina writes of a heavily pregnant woman kidnapped and battling for her survival in extreme heat and terrifying circumstances. I found this story shocking and Paullina brave to put a pregnant woman into this sort of situation and to be so graphic about the happenings. This story is gutsy and really does punch you in the stomach right to the end. You feel the desperation of
May 19, 2010 rated it really liked it
I read this book in one day. It's not a big book, but is certainly a rollercoaster ride! Paullina Simons wastes no time getting to the point. Very different to her other books, I couldn't imagine her writing something like this! While reading it you come up with a hundred scenarios of where you think the book is going to go. It was hard because I felt such anger and frustration towards Didi's kidnapper, but then towards the end of the book I was crying for him and felt so sad. But then after a f ...more
Mar 12, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was certainly an un-put-downable read.

Highlights were definitely the Didi and kidnapper parts, well written and credible. I could really FEEL the unbearable heat of the day, the blind panic of Didi's, the dirt, the pain and the thirst. It was all so vivid.

What was not so credible was the husband/FBI side of the story. The husband being so involved in the search for Didi was just not realistic. Donning bullet proof vests and flying around in helicopters is just too unbelievable...seriously.
Sep 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Another great read by Paullina Simmons. Obviously this is no Bronze Horseman but I've long since stopped searching, but I was in the mood for a thriller and she delivered what I wanted. Moves fast, usual brilliant characterisation as I've come to expect from her. Kept me turning pages right to the end. It's not 5 star, but it's a great read. My only gripe was the main characters religious ramblings got on my nerves but that's probably because I'm particularly intolerant of anything religious. Sa ...more
Dec 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Pretty much read in one sitting. I can't remember the last time I read a book that I felt I literally could not put down. Incredibly compelling - if you could be on the edge of your seat whilst reading, then I was. The writing was simple, yet efficient and powerful; certainly not top-shelf 'literature' but exceptionally great entertainment. More a long novella than a novel, this is a most satisfying read. Highly recommend.
Pam Mason
Jan 06, 2012 rated it it was ok
I was disappointed in this book as I have read some fantastic books by Paulina Simons. I didn't particularly like the topic and felt the book didn't have any depth. I felt it was drawn out and therefore don't recommend it
Liam Terblanche
Jan 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
What a departure from Simons's other books! Riveting time-line, suspense, tension, with a continuous undertone of foreboding.

Maybe I'm biased. But Paullina Simons cannot put a foot wrong.
Julia Sandler
Jan 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
It's a hard one to put down... gripping, suspenseful story about a kidnapping. My mate made a great point in that it would make a great Law & Order/CSI episode. I was hooked!
Clare Evans
Dec 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Excellent, read it in one go as I couldn't put it down.
Fiona Story
Sep 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
I really liked this book. A fast paced, gripping read.
Aug 07, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller, fiction
Wow…this got my heart racing. Very tense and thrilling read.
Angie Fehl
POTENTIAL TRIGGER WARNING: This novel describes scenes of GRAPHIC sexual assault.

Desdemonda "Didi" Woods, nine months pregnant, is abducted while shopping at a Dallas mall. While the abductor takes her across the flatlands of Texas, Didi's husband, Rich, works with the FBI to try to reach her in time. There are time stamps at the beginning of each chapter, so the reader can keep track of how much time is passing.. but spoiler! the whole thing takes 11 hours. ;-)

So now that you know the general p
Dec 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
"eleven hours" by Paulina Simmons was indeed a page turner.

Didi, a 9 months pregnant woman gets kidnapped from a shopping mall by a supposedly kidnapper who doesn't want a ransom.
Time shifts through the scenes where Rich, her husband is introduced and he gets scared upon realizing that his pregnant wife has been kidnapped.
Next the FBI steps in and the officer in charge Scott decides to persue this kidnapper, all the while bragging his record on being able to catch the culprit. However as time go
Didi Wood is very pregnant and decides to go to the shopping mall while waiting for her lunch date with her husband. When she decides to grab a quick bite before leaving the mall a stranger approaches her an engages in polite small talk. He spooked her out from the first contact and yet later on the parking lot didn't pull up enough of a fight to refuse hanging out with him for a ride, yeah but right, the heat and 9 and a half months pregnant. So, that's how Didi got kidnapped, then, we learn ho ...more
Sep 27, 2018 rated it did not like it
I found Eleven Hours really disappointing and like other reviewers, not in any way comparable to her other amazing books such as The Bronze Horseman and Tully. Whilst the book was fast pasted, relatively well constructed and evoked the tension I assume Paulina was going for, the characters were basic, uninteresting and not particularly likable. The plot itself was unoriginal and I dare say a bit boring . I was hoping there might be a fascinating twist at the end and whilst the motivation of the ...more
Caroline G'wattage
May 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned-books
A heavily pregnant young woman is leaving the shopping mall to head home on a horribly hot day in Texas.
Her normal life of shopping, husband, children and with extra excitement of the newborn baby stretches before her.
And then she is bundled in the car and kidnapped, by a desperate young man.
What does he want ?
Where are they going ?

In scenes that alternate between the desperate husband, pursuing by car and helicopter with an alarming laid back FBI man, who may or not be as good as he thinks he i
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Paullina Simons was born in Leningrad, USSR, in 1963. At the age of ten her family immigrated to the United States. Growing up in Russia Paullina dreamt of someday becoming a writer. Her dream was put on hold as she learned English and overcame the shock of a new culture.

After graduating from university and after various jobs including working as a financial journalist and as a translator Paullin