She is known to the world as the young girl who was kidnapped at age 11 by a serial rapist and his wife. Jaycee Dugard, now age 31 recalls her 18 years of imprisonment under captor Phillip Garrido in her memoir, A Stolen Life.
It’s difficult for the average person to understand just how difficult Dugard’s life might have been, but she says, she did what she had to do to survive. In the book, the author takes us back to her earliest memories in captivity and describes in brutal honesty the kinds of abuse she suffered.
One would think that having to endure years of sexual abuse would make one hardened and resentful, but early on in the book, Dugard remarks that she does not believe in hate. “If all my heart were filled up with hate and regrets and what-ifs, then what else would it have room for?” she writes. The book follows her story from her earliest days with Garrido, all the way up to her rescue.
The LA Times noted that the book is far from a perfect literary gem, but notes that it is this very thing that makes the book so special.
“A Stolen Life has the easy, digressive flow of conversation, the technically incorrect construction of verbs both past and present, and some awkward prose that indicate Dugard herself is the sole author of the book. The editorial choices not to smooth these things out, as they might have done in another book, allow Dugard’s voice to come through.”
In the short time that it has been out, the book has already become a bestseller.
Garrido is now serving 431 years in prison for his crimes. His wife Nancy is now serving her sentence of 36 years for helping to facilitate her husband’s crimes.