Book Review: Taken

Book Review: TakenTaken by Erin Bowman
Series: Taken #1
Published by HarperTeen on April 16, 2013
Pages: 352
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There are no men in Claysoot. There are boys—but every one of them vanishes at midnight on his eighteenth birthday. The ground shakes, the wind howls, a blinding light descends…and he’s gone.

They call it the Heist.

Gray Weathersby’s eighteenth birthday is mere months away, and he’s prepared to meet his fate–until he finds a strange note from his mother and starts to question everything he’s been raised to accept: the Council leaders and their obvious secrets. The Heist itself. And what lies beyond the Wall that surrounds Claysoot–a structure that no one can cross and survive.

Climbing the Wall is suicide, but what comes after the Heist could be worse. Should he sit back and wait to be taken–or risk everything on the hope of the other side?

There are books that you instantly know how exactly you feel, and there are books that you have to think about for a while. Taken was a mixture of both.

In the town of Claysoot, at the age of eighteen, males are "spirited" away. What happens to the men? Where are they taken? No one knows. The Heist is cause for both celebration and sorrow. With Gray's time to be part of the Heist drawing closer and closer, he soon realizes that there is much more to the Heist than he ever realized.

Taken wins points from me for being told from the male POV. There are not many male POVs that can pull off everything that Gray does. I loved him from page one, and was dying to know more about him and his world. Speaking of the world, Erin Bowman pulls it off beautifully. If you have ever seen The Village (yes, silly movie, I know), then you may have an idea of the feeling of Taken. Sort spooky. Lots of questions that need answers. And a twist that completely takes you off guard.

Lately, I have been having an issue with dystopian reads feeling like they are a rehash of something that I have already seen. But with Taken, it all felt new.

Except for the romance.

With Taken, I feel solidly about the world, the characters, and the twist, but the romance is another story. At first, I loved where Bowman was taking Gray. The love interest is a local girl who is smart, different than the others, one that he has loved from afar. Great! But when things started to be a little fuzzy between them, and the love triangle began, my interest in Gray's love life started to tank. Oh, it is not as bad as some I have come across in the past. But I wanted more from it.

Final Verdict:
Romance issues aside, I was beyond pleased with Taken. I loved the world, the characters, the back story. It was all fantastic. It is the perfect dystopian for a dystopian lover who is tired of seeing the same old idea over and over again. Taken was fresh and kept me on the edge of my seat from beginning to end.

Will I read the next installment:
Yes! And I want it now. Oh, I have to wait another year? Ok, fine.

Kate

Kate is the co-blog owner of The Book Monsters. I am a twenty-something year old who is passionate about reading. I currently hold a B.A. in English and am married to my high school sweetheart. We have two (cat) children, Gracie and Kit, who are total divas. I have an insane and possibly unhealthy passion for reading. You can usually find me with my nose buried in a book.

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7 responses to “Book Review: Taken

  1. I've felt the same way about Dystopian books lately. They just seemed to blend together, because there are so many similarities. I'm glad you liked Taken, though. That's too bad that the romance part of it wasn't that good. I had that issue with Mila 2.0. I'm still really excited about Taken. Great review!

    • It seems that there are a lot of similarities lately. Some I don't mind. So I do. Taken was completely different and I loved that. Even with the romance… which really wasn't horrible.

      I have been eyeing Mila 2.0, but have heard so many mixed things. Thanks for the little bit of forewarning.

  2. Tara SG (25 Hour Books)

    Ooooh a new blog to stalk! (Thanks for stopping by my blog so I could find you!)

     

    Great review! This is already on my TBR and I can't wait to get my hands on it. I'm a little worried that you didn't like the romance, but the fact that you can't wait to read the next one is promising 🙂

     

    I LOVE your blog design. So I jumped over to the designer's site and it's the genius that created The Ultimate Book Blogger Plugin! She is so awesome to work with!

    • Yay! I love stalkers 😉

      The romance was that bad. The problem was that it started out really, really good. Then when there was a little bump in the road, Grey turns tail and falls for another chick. I am not sure it will be a full on love triangle. However, it seems like there will be a lot of internal conflict for him as to who is that best gal for him.

      Glad you like it. I love the design too. Ashley is amazing to work with. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. kay

    I'm intrigued by this one, if only because it's told from a male point of view. Too bad the romance wasn't good though.

    The cover is striking!

  4. Great review. I just got my copy in the mail and can't wait to read it. I'm glad Taken felt new to you. I have been having similar feelings about dystopian books and look forward to this one!!

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