Why do witches steal children? Do they really eat them?
Stolen is about a witch who steals children but all is not as it seems. This story puts a whole new wonderful spin on witch folktales. It has a fire and pitchfork mob, a missing and presumed dead witch and baby, a mysterious twelve year old girl with amnesia found in the woods, and an evil .... can't say anymore... it would give too much away. Take my word for it there there are several unexpected twists and turns in the last chapters that will astonish you. They certainly caught me by surprise--- and the last revelation was so perfectly and delightfully folktale-ish!
The only thing that took me out of the story for a moment was the dialogue. Since I was imagining a renaissance faire type of village, I thought to myself: These people are awfully well-spoken for farmers and villagers. Didn't detract from the story and maybe only a speech/language pathologist would even think of such a thing.
If you appreciate a good folktale, give Stolen a look. It is a very quick read at only 158 pages and would be perfect for a cozy afternoon or bedtime book.
Stolen was on the young adult bookshelf at my library but it is certainly suitable for middle graders.
I haven't read any other works by Vivian Van Velde but I want too. Hopefully, I can find Being Dead, a book of ghost stories reviewed here by Kathy (The Literary Amnesiac).