The Stolen Child by Keith Donohue
A Novel

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Synopsis

“I am a changeling–a word that describes within its own name what we are bound and intended to do. We kidnap a human child and replace him or her with one of our own. . . .”The double story of Henry Day begins in 1949, when he is kidnapped at age seven by a band of wild childlike beings who live in an ancient, secret community in the forest. The changelings rename their captive Aniday and he becomes, like them, unaging and stuck in time. They leave one of their own to take his place, an imposter who must try–with varying success–to hide his true identity from the Day family. As the changeling Henry grows up, he is haunted by glimpses of his lost double and by vague memories of his own childhood a century earlier. Narrated in turns by Henry and Aniday, The Stolen Child follows them as their lives converge, driven by their obsessive search for who they were before they changed places in the world. Moving from a realistic setting in small-town America deep into the forest of humankind’s most basic desires and fears, this remarkable novel is a haunting fable about identity and the illusory innocence of childhood.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
 

About Keith Donohue

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Keith Donohue is the Director of Communications for the National Historical Publications and Records Commission, the grant-making arm of the National Archives in Washington, DC. Until 1998 he worked at the National Endowment for the Arts and wrote hundreds of speeches for chairmen John Frohnmayer and Jane Alexander. He has written articles for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and other newspapers. Donohue holds a Ph.D. in English from The Catholic University of America. His dissertation on Irish writer Flann O'Brien was published as The Irish Anatomist: A Study of Flann O'Brien (Maunsel Press, 2003).
 
Published May 8, 2007 by Anchor. 338 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Stolen Child

Kirkus Reviews

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As the boys age, each seeks identity, but is haunted by memory—Aniday, of his family and clean sheets, “Henry Day,” of a life richer than the one he’s living with his suburban hosts.

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The Guardian

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The Stolen Child by Keith Donohue 319pp, Jonathan Cape, £12.99 Once upon a time, quite recently, it seems, somewhere in the woods of New England there lived a small pack of shape-shifting goblins.

Jul 01 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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In interlocking chapters of scintillating prose, Donohue tells the tale of Henry Day and the two people he becomes after being snatched at age seven by changelings.

Aug 07 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

NPR

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The inspiration for Keith Donohue's book The Stolen Child is a W.B. Yeats poem in which fairies try to entice a human child away from a human world "more full of weeping than you can understand." The changeling myth at the heart of poem and book has ancient roots and echoes in popular culture.

Jun 11 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

Examiner

This dark fantasy takes place in a world much like our own, in which there exist hobgoblins in the forest who steal unhappy children from their homes and take their physical shape in order to take over their lives.

May 23 2011 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

AV Club

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A changeling and his victim rediscover themselves in a stunning debut novel.

May 30 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

Entertainment Weekly

Forever-young forest pixies abduct Henry Day, a runaway boy, and turn him into one of their own — while a replacement changeling becomes a piano prodigy.

Apr 26 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

The Washington Post

Barrie's Peter Pan , another fairy story that was not about fairies at all but about the loss of imagination and about growing up.

Jul 09 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

USA Today

And Henry Day became a changeling renamed Aniday.

Feb 07 2013 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

People

Donohue's debut novel is a fairy tale for grown-ups: the melancholy story of Henry Day and the supernatural creature ("Don't call me a fairy") who takes Henry's place when he is 7.

Jun 12 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

Bookmarks Magazine

Janet Maslin Newsweek 4 of 5 Stars "… a novel of great power and sadness, a fairy tale about the pain of growing up.

Aug 21 2007 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

ReadySteadyBook

Whether readers choose to approach Donohue’s offering as it is written or choose to engage the novel on an existential level, The Stolen Child is a magical novel that will linger with readers long after they read the last page.

May 09 2006 | Read Full Review of The Stolen Child: A Novel

Reader Rating for The Stolen Child
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