(This novel was provided to my by the author for review.)
The novel opens with a hair-tingling scene, as two men kidnap Emely Donnovan, one of the wealthiest women in America, and bury her alive. What is behind this horrific crime?
Raised in a strict religious institution, Emely never knew her parents. Fearing a life of poverty, she starts up a small business that deals mainly with buying and selling stocks. Thanks to her extreme dedication and knowledge, the company grows over time into a major conglomerate. In her desire for ever greater financial security, this beautiful, ambitious CEO has accumulated a number of enemies.
But now she finds herself locked in the basement of a remote house in the middle of a forest, watched over by one of her captors who makes her buy and sell stocks for him so he can get rich. Her challenge to survive becomes even more complicated when Emely’s captor falls in love with her …
As the title suggests the heroine of the novel, Emely Donnovan, must be strong to survive the ordeal she is to go through. A tough-as-nails business woman who is used to getting her way in all things in regards to her business and personal life, she is about to undergo a horrific experience being kidnapped not for money, which she has plenty of, but for revenge involving being buried and left to die.
Mr. Fox amply delivers on the action in this novel. However, for me personally, the novel falls short because frankly I just didn’t care about the main character Emely Donnovan. Though trying to make the character more sympathetic to his readers by introducing glimpses into her past via conversations between a reporter and her friends/business associates, I found most of these not revealing enough or good enough to justify her behavior.
Further in the novel Mr. Fox begins to incorporate a romance between Emely Donnovan and one of the kidnappers. This smacks of Stockholm Syndrome, an apparently paradoxical psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and have positive feelings towards their captors, sometimes to the point of defending them. These feelings are generally considered irrational in light of the danger or risk endured by the victims, who essentially mistake a lack of abuse from their captors for an act of kindness. Unfortunately because I did not care for Emely Donnovan nor for her kidnapper, the introduction of a romance aspect to this novel did not work for me.
This might have had a chance with me if it was written as a murder mystery novel where she was killed off and they had to solve the crime. But as it stands just not my cup of tea.
(reviewed 10 days after purchase)