Monday, April 1, 2013

Book Review: Taken (Taken #1) by: Erin Bowman

Release Date: April 16, 2013 from HarperTeen
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Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for a fair and honest review.
"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?"

My Thoughts:

So I’m not really sure what I was expecting when I picked up this book, but I got a very enjoyable read. It was an interesting dystopian and not a carbon copy of all the other dystopias out there. There were a lot of twists and secrets that kept me glued to the pages. 

One of my favorite things about this book is that our MC is a guy. It is nice to switch it up from the female POV every now and then. Gray, our lead, was a very likable character. He is impulsive and hot tempered, but at the same time he is a good person. He has always accepted things as they were until he discovers a life altering secret concerning the Heist he has always accepted to just be a part of life. Being who he is, he searches for answers and has no desire to stop until he finds them. Although his search for answers lands him in a heap of trouble, I admire this about him. I like that he didn’t take things at face value and wanted to learn the truth for himself. 

This is the kind of book that relies heavily on secrets and mystery and lies and deceit and that makes it a great read. Every time you think you know the truth, it turns out you were wrong. It makes it hard for the reader to trust anything that happens and because of that you spend a lot of the book on the edge of the seat. When you finally think you have a handle on things, something else happens to make you crazy. 

With that being said, I almost feel as if nothing happens. I feel like a lot of the book was simply Gray going from place to place and learning new things. Sure there is action along the way, but it just resulted in Gray ending up somewhere else where he learned something new. Even at the end during the climax, there are still secrets being kept from Gray in the overall plan. Also, there is a lot left open at the end of the book, too much for a first book in a series in my opinion. I would have liked a bit more closure. 

Then we have the romantic aspect. I liked that it wasn’t a major focus of the book and that the main story line was Gray looking for answers, but at the same time I felt as it is wasn’t that important and it wasn’t really necessary. It is interesting to see a love triangle where it is a guy caught between two girls. However, I have no strong feelings as to who Gray should pick. I like Bree and I like Emma, but at the same time I don’t really care who Gray picks. I feel like I should care one way or the other. 

All in all, Taken is an enjoyable read, even though I had some complaints. I am very picky with dystopias because they tend to be very similar, but this one has its own flair. It is a quick read and I am interested to see where the story goes.


  1. Hmmm... Well, I love that this is a unique dystopian story. I also like the male point of view, too.
    But it's too bad that it feels like nothing happened. And it says a lot that you don't care who he ends up w/.
    Great review, Teresa!

    1. The premise is really unique, but I think more could have happened with the story. It fell a bit short for me.

  2. Very intriguing cover; and, after reading the synopsis, I was all "somebody is taking all the BOYS?? No. This means war!" I'm so glad this was an enjoyable read for you because I am definitely curious! I adore a male POV, and I'm glad Gray is likeable... but you don't seem blown away by this one. I'm on the fence, but I'll let you decide if this one is for me or not. Wonderful review, wifey! <3

    1. I am on the fence with this one and honestly wifey I don't think I would go out of my way to recommend it, so I think you can skip this one unless you really wanna know where the boys are going lol

  3. It kinda reminds me of Defiance by C.J Redwine (which I'm reading right now,) because of the whole wall thing, but other than that, I think this would be something interesting. And add the fact that its written in a guy's POV. Consider my interest piqued. :D


  4. I'm very picky with dystopias too-- but this one looks so good! I'm sorry that you didn't love it to death, though. I like a book that relies on lies and secrets, but maybe this one was just too boring? A boy MC sounds interesting, though-- especially with that love triangle! LOL. Lovely review, Teresa. Maybe the next book will give you more closure? (:

    Megan@The Book Babe

    1. I think there may have been just too many secrets and lies. idk, it just wasnt all I hoped it would be, but it was enjoyable

  5. I'm reading this one right now, and I'm having a very hard time getting into it. I just don't feel connected to Gray or Emma in any way. I'm about 170 pages in, and I feel like there's hardly any action or any emotion!

    Glad to see someone who didn't love this one because every review I've read so far is glowing, so I kind of felt like a crazy person.

    YA Sisterhood

    1. I know! I felt like an outcast by not really loving this one since everyone else seems to love it. I just couldnt get fully invested in it!

  6. I won this from a GR giveaway and it got here 2 days ago. I was thinking of picking it up, cause I was intrigued by the concept and I actually think I might enjoy it. I also love that its in a guy's POV and am very curious to see how that fairs out. Plus, the romance sounds great too. Too bad you didn't feel much for either girl. That is a let down and so is the plot progression.

    *sigh* I am hesitant to start it, but I think for the fact that it is a unique dystopian, I'll pick it up!

    Awesomesauce review Teresa! :D

    And because I feel like it...I HAVE FINALLY CAUGHT UP TO YOUR POSTS!!! Time for my joy dance.....*wiggle wiggle...sway.....wiggle wiggle....sway!!*

    ~Maida <3

  7. I really enjoy reading from a male's POV, it is like a breath of fresh air after so many female POV books.

    Anyways, I like that you said this book also is original in it's own way! Even though you mentioned 'feels like as if nothing happens' the book does still interesting enough that I might still give it a try!! I like that is has its own flair :D



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