For the Townsman
Cranbrook native Shelby Cain will be reading from her debut novel with Oolichan Books at Lotus Books in Cranbrook on the evening of Friday, July 8, at 7 pm. “Mountain Girl” captivates readers until its final pages.
Written and laboured over for seven years, ‘Mountain Girl” explores the very real phenomenon of Stockholm syndrome, an affliction where a person who is abducted begins to trust or even love the abductor.
“I have always been fascinated with the brain’s ability to protect itself,” Cain said. “I studied the psychological condition of traumatic bonding in University, and when I was contemplating writing a novel the concept surfaced immediately — along with some of my darkest fears. Mountain Girl is the compilation of what haunts me.”
Cain’s main character, Krissy Mathews, was kidnapped at 17. She returns four years later, thin and disheveled, with a young child clinging to life and a man she calls her husband.
It doesn’t take long to be engrossed in “Mountain Girl.” Like its main character, under the grips of Stockholm syndrome, readers find themselves torn between liking her captor and being completely repulsed by him.
As the page-turning story unfolds, the lines between good and bad are blurred. Is Krissy’s abductor really all that evil? Is the detective in charge of her case really all that virtuous? “Mountain Girl” is a stark reminder that reality is only our own experiences filtered through our own perspectives.
Shelby Cain was raised in Cranbrook, B.C., where she developed an obsession for nature and adrenaline. She now lives an hour away in Fernie with her husband and two young daughters. Writing is a new and exhilarating passion she has explored since having her children. She writes short stories, magazine articles, and a monthly column about her life for Fernie Fix magazine entitled “Family Stoke.” “Mountain Girl” is her first novel.