Scott Taylor's Reviews > The Stolen Child

The Stolen Child by Keith Donohue
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's review
Feb 13, 2011

liked it

Just your standard book about a child who gets abducted by changlings and becomes a changling, and the changling who takes his place as a human. What?

While reading the first few chapters of this book, I wanted a motivation for the changelings and to know more about why they did what they did. The author never really acknowledges their penchant for stealing children and replacing them with one of their own in any kind of moral way. In fact, this book contains little to no meta-commentary about what it is about. It simply is. I respect that.

What is it, then? Its a metaphor maybe. An allegory about growing up that simultaneously mourns childhood and adulthood. Its a book that I think is intended to highlight the lifelong search for identity in the midst of constant changes to ourselves and the world around us. And a book that clearly says that life is both a tragedy and a triumph, as created by our own choice in how we live it.

There are no enemies. No big bad. For the changelings (children), we see Neverland with no Hook and, actually, no direction or hope. For the non-changelings (grown ups), its a constant search to recapture something lost to one's past. A longing for a time of youth that will never return. Intermingled with both ideas is this gnawing, yearning for identity.

If you like that notion, I think the book will speak to you. For me it was a bit of a meh experience.

Thanks for reading.

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