Story of the Living Dear Girl
When “Alice” (parenthesized since that is not her real name) was ten years old, she went on a field trip with her class to a aquarium. While she was there, she got into a fight with her friends because she wouldn’t share the lip gloss that she had received from her parents on her birthday. Due to this fight, her friends wander off, leaving her alone. She then loses her class and is approached by a man. He says that her class has gone to see a movie and that he will take her there. He gives her a hat and tells her to tuck her hair into it, and then leads her out of the zoo. He tells her that the lady at the front thought she was his son. He laughs, and then abducts the young girl.
This book takes place five years after “Alice’s” abduction. She is now 15, and is still living with Ray, her abductor. They now portray father and daughter, though they have no connections to anyone in the outside world. During this time, he has deprived her of food, hoping that this will keep her frozen in her child-like body, has tried to dress her in child-like clothing, and has raped her daily since the day he kidnapped her.She now refers to herself as the “Living Dead Girl.” She is numb on the inside and is looking forward to the day when Ray will finally kill her like he did with the “Other Alice.” The “Other Alice” is the girl that he had abducted before our present-day Alice. He had kept her until she was fifteen and had outgrown her child-like body. He then killed her and dumped her body, where it was later found, but he had never been suspected with her abduction or murder. It is implied that the First Alice tried to commit suicide with a razor while taking a shower alone (this is the reason the second Alice is not allowed to take showers by herself.)
Alice now hopes for death, rather than for escape. Since the day he had taken her, he had threatened that if she ever ran from him, or made one false move, he would kill her parents. She has been brainwashed with his fear and says “I could run, but he would find me. He would take me back to 623 Daisy Lane and make everyone who lives there pay. He would make everyone there pay even if he didn’t find me. I belong to him. I’m his little girl. All I have to do is be good” (p. 34). So she “stays in line” even though she is left at their apartment alone all day while he is at work, and even goes to get waxes done by herself. So she sees no hope in ever returning to her home, and now wishes for death. However, Ray has other plans in mind. He tells Alice he wants her to find him “A New Alice.” At first, Alice hopes that if she does, he will then free her, or at least finally take her life, but instead Ray tells her that she will train the new Alice to his liking.
So Alice takes trips down to the park where Ray had taken her once before and watches the young girls that play there. She writes down in a little notebook the different girls, what they do, and what they look like. She returns to Ray and he asks her to tell him all about these little girls. On one of her trips there, she meets Lucy, and young girl who likes to swing. After Lucy tells Alice that she doesn’t like her, Alice decides in anger that Lucy will be the one to replace her. Alice then meets Lucy’s older brother, Jake, a troubled teenager who “pops pills.” Alice returns to his car and performs a sexual act to try to get some information from him about Lucy. She finds out a little information about the girls hobbies and schedule. Before she leaves, she also meets a police officer who has a feeling that Alice is in trouble. However, Alice knows that Police only cause her trouble with Ray, so she refuses to call for help. When Ray accuses Alice of lying to him about the Lucy’s where abouts Alice becomes confused as Jake told her that she would be at swimming.
Alice – She was kidnapped by Ray as a child, who sexually and physically abused her, and is now in her teens. She is becoming overly desperate and has almost given up on life. She’s charged by her abductor to find and train her own replacement Alice.
Ray – The antagonist in the book. Ray was sexually abused by his mother as a child and is now taking out his pain by abusing young girls, all of whom he calls Alice.
Lucy – The little girl Alice is planning to bring to Ray. When she tells Ray of her discovery, he then renames Lucy “Annabel”.
Jake – Lucy’s older brother. He promises Alice that he will save her.