The first half of the book frustrated me as I tried to understand Amanda. She was warned and warned about going to "the most dangerous place in the world". She was told that she would be raped and beheaded. She knew that reporters needed ransom insurance. She saw a corpse along the road that had been beheaded. She ignored everything. I could never relate to her. She had magical thinking. 'It won't happen to me'. And she convinced Nigel to go with her!
I pondered Amanda's life and wondered if her childhood is the key to understanding Amanda. She tells in the book about her mother bringing home men who were violent, and I realized that Amanda was used to being in danger. As a young child, she was reading National Geographic to escape, while her mother's boyfriend was punching holes in the wall. I also read that Amanda's mother had been involved with a cult in Japan and was abducted there.
Amanda's connection with her mother interested me. I would expect that she would be upset with her mother for not protecting her in childhood, but she really loved her mother. Did she turn into her mother?
If any of this is true, it would help me understand how she was nonchalant when abducted and able to remember every detail.