by Natascha Kampusch
Unlike Ingrid Betancourt, Austrian Natascha Kampusch waited four years to tell the 'full story' of her abduction. Strong enough to recount the eight years she was kept mostly incarcerated in a dungeon under the home of Wolfgang Priklopil, the now 22-year-old denies hers was a case of Stockholm Syndrome. Readers won't be fully persuaded. Although Priklopil was possessive of her and had a violent temper - he beat, kicked and punched her - he also relaxed his grip as the years passed, allowing her upstairs into his home to clean, in the garden and even to swim in a neighbour's pool (when they were away). Together they also renovated a flat near his home. Why then did she remain his prisoner for so long? It's complicated, Kampusch says, condemning those who want things to be black and white. When her kidnapper renamed her Bibiane, she writes, he wiped out her old identity and the physical prison was 'supplemented piece by piece by a psychological one'. At 18, however, a change came over her that would lead to her escape. 3,096 Days is an uncomfortable read that will have you mentally shouting at Kampusch to save herself.