A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard

A Stolen LifeA Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard
Published by Simon and Schuster

We all know the story of Jaycee Dugard – when she was eleven years old, she was kidnapped at her school bus stop in Lake Tahoe, California and held captive for eighteen years at the home of Phillip and Nancy Garrido, during which time she gave birth to two girls, both fathered by her captor and abuser Phillip. In August of 2009, Phillip brought Jaycee and her two daughters to a meeting with his parole officer, and their strange behavior made the police suspect something weird was going on with this family – leading to the release of Jaycee and her two girls. A Stolen Life is Jaycee’s memoir of those eighteen years.

This memoir is one of the best I’ve read at truly showing what it means to be courageous and resilient. If Jaycee Dugard can survive what she did and come out of it with a positive attitude towards life, you or I can survive just about anything. She is the picture of someone who has been through the worst that we can imagine but has made major strides in the direction of getting the life she wants, not the life someone else has taught her she should have. All I can say is that her story is amazing.

This was not an easy book – what the Garridos did to Jaycee is unthinkable, unforgivable even. Jaycee’s experiences are shocking and extremely disturbing. I almost burst into tears several times throughout this book. But it’s the hope that she ends up with that is the inspiring, amazing piece of her story.

I listened to the audio of this one, and Jaycee narrates herself, which was an interesting and I think good choice. She has a very young quality to her voice, which was weird to me at first, but once I got used to it I think having her narrate made me feel closer to her, I felt that I got to know not just her story but also her personality through listening to her read her memoir. I definitely recommend this one and especially the audio version.


16 thoughts on “A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard”

  1. I’ve wondered if I’m strong enough to read this book but, you know, if that young woman was stgrong enough to live and then write about it, how can I not be strong enough?

  2. This is such a disturbing story, and something that I am very interested in after having read your review. I am going to have to listen to this one at some point. The fact that she survived, got away, and now lives a normal and hopeful life is something that amazes me. Fantastic review! I need to see if I can find this one!

  3. I read the book at the insistence of my husband, and it was such a sad, horrifying, yet hopeful book. I could barely read it at times, so I don’t know if I’m strong enough to handle the audio version, since she reads her own story.

    1. I completely agree with what you’ve said – it’s sad and horrifying but ultimately a hopeful story of resilience. Jaycee Dugard is an amazing person.

  4. I want to read this story but I’ve been waiting until I feel ready for it. I have read a few articles with Jaycee and some reviews of the book and I know she describes some things graphically and that she went through absolute he** so I’m a little nervous about reading this memoir. I know I will read it because I feel if she’s strong enough to put it out there in a boot, I will read it, she deserves that. It’s difficult to face that such evil as the Garridos exist in our world and can get away with the aweul things they do. Thank goodness Jaycees ordeal finally ended.
    This is a terrific review, thank you.

  5. Oh, Jaycee — what a phenomenal woman. I’m sure this was very difficult at points, but I’m glad to hear it’s an ultimately inspirational and resilient story of hope! Having her narrate the book herself sounds like it was a great choice.

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