His Kidnapper’s Shoes by Maggie James
Genres: Psychological Thriller
Published: 1st January, 2013
Great story idea, but fell short on the execution. It seems, nowadays the term “psychological thriller” gets thrown around frequently, even when it’s not the case.
There was very little suspense in the story. The chapters alternate between Laura and Daniel, and we find out quite early on why the kidnapping happened, even though the blurb made it sound like this will the most burning question in the book. Laura clearly suffers from some sort of a mental illness, but it’s hardly thrilling, mostly just sad. Despite getting to know her back story, I just couldn’t empathize with her, and I had a feeling that I was supposed to.
Daniel was not much more likable either, but I could at least get behind his anger, frustration and confusion.
The way the plot unfolded was rather far fetched, and I can’t help but feel that it took away from the potential suspense. It’s just my opinion, but I think the revelation about Laura not being his mother could have been more powerful if he stumbled across it by accident, thus confirming his suspicion, as opposed to the way it actually happened.
That whole thing with him having green eyes, while Laura’s are blue and the alleged father’s brow starting a whole drama with DNA testing is just beyond annoying. I’m the living example of a green eyed person with a blue eyed mom and a brown eyed dad, an no, I was not found in a dumpster…
His “big reveal” at the end, his “real reason” for hating his so-called-mum, was not a reveal at all. It was clearly coming from miles away. Sometimes I wonder though… Am I reading too many of these types of books and I just got to know the formula, or is it really that obvious?
The dialogues were a pain to read. What is with this constant name calling? Why do you have to repeat the person’s name you are talking to in every other sentence? If anyone talked to me like that for real, I’d rip them a new butthole for sure.
For some reason all the people Daniel encounters in the story are some wise sages, full of understanding and patience, and great advice that could compete with a skillful psychologist, and yet, nobody in the book thinks that seeing an actual therapist could actually help. No way! What is more, they all seem to think that seeing one would actually be more harmful than anything.
Ian mentions seeing the doctor, pills, getting proper help, and I understand exactly what he means. Well, I won’t do it. I’m not going to allow some fresh-faced graduate whose experience of life is all from a textbook to probe around in my thoughts. Someone older wouldn’t be any better either. I doubt any of them would have dealt well with the crap I endured in my early life; what right would they have to throw clichés like ‘broken childhood home’ and ‘unresolved issues’ at me?
Laura going through all sorts of horrors from an early age, mentally unstable, but a psychologist would surely not understand any of it, nobody could. Well, aren’t you a special snowflake? Real mum, suffocating with guilt from the loss of her child, but no skilled professional would be able to help with this. A female friend of Daniel, who goes through some other sort of horrific, life changing experience, where a therapist would be absolutely zero help… Daniel? “I’d rather have a beer and a shag, thank you.” Obviously…
In conclusion, I’m not saying the book is terrible. I see why this kind of story appeals to people, but it’s not something I appreciate.