This is the untold true story of one citizen’s pointless torture and month-long captivity. The story, formerly mistold if not utterly overlooked, has been made into a feature film. Even as a dark comedy, there is little amusement to be found in human suffering. The sick and twisted minds of Mr. Schiller’s captors would be fodder for the Darwin Awards if the results were not so alarmingly inhumane. Physical, mental and emotional torture, as well as sensory deprivation and starvation, the prisoner of war like conditions differed only in the fact that Mr. Schiller was completely alone during his extended stay at the warehouse he refers to as Hotel Hell. An early victim of identity theft in the years following Hurricane Andrew in Miami, Mr. Schiller chronicles his story in tortuous detail. His humiliation, pain and suffering at the hands of these perverted social misfits is a shocking revelation.
What is it like to be imprisoned in near dungeon-like conditions? All this mayhem on American soil toward the end of the last millennium.
Greed, lust for power and the desire to inflict pain and misery were the apparent motivating forces behind this gruesome incident.
Truly a harrowing tale and one that you won’t soon forget.
Amazing story, poor editing
The author's story of captivity and survival is truly remarkable. It's a shame that the editing was poor, not doing justice to the author's story.
Beautifully written..If I could actually speak to Mr. Marc Schiller, I would like to say, yes you did help change my life for the better by reading your story...at times it has made me laugh, made me angry, and made me happy ...I have learned a valuable lesson and that is not to focus on the past of what might have happened to me but learn from those events to make me a better person..I believe everything happens for a reason and Mr. Schilller survived for a great reason. Just by you writing this book I believe has saved countless lives ...even if the recent kidnap victims of Cleveland read this book, I believe it would help them in the same very positive way...thank you Mr. Schiller for sharing your story..you sure have placed a lot of things in my life into perspective. God Bless you and everyone else.
The power to prevail
I read this book in one sitting and it left me gobsmacked.
It is stunning, the depths of senseless human cruelty that exists. The degree of torture that the author endured, physical and mental, first in captivity and after release, is shocking: and the most harrowing part it is that it was cruelty for the sake of cruelty. The author was a random person targeted for money, and had even shown nothing but extreme kindness toward one of his torturers prior to the abduction.
One of the comparisons made repeatedly throughout the book (especially when the author seeks help) is that his entire story sounds like it was "made for TV." But with fiction, things are encouraged to make sense, one would think for such an epic crime, there would be a motive, a reason, a grudge, any kind of impetus. But the reality of what the author endured was abject, senseless, random cruelty.
What makes the book such an amazing read is that these darkest aspects of human nature are offset in a powerful dichotomy: the power of spiritual fortitude and the will to survive. I was struck the most by the fact that, early into his abduction, the author realizes his captors for what they truly are--senselessly depraved--and takes a step back from emotionally involving himself with the situation. I can't imagine the immense courage it took to comply with all the humiliating demands in a detached, impersonal manner, but this is precisely the wisdom that saved his life, his family's lives.
Ultimately, this book is about the triumph and the indestructibility of the human spirit, told in such a way that it left me touched and sitting in awe. It is also a gift, because at some point in life, I'm sure everyone is confronted with one of the many faces of senseless cruelty--and it's a reminder that no one is alone, and the personal power to endure and overcome is infinite.