August 8, 2013

Review: Taken by Erin Bowman

Title: Taken
Author: Erin Bowman
Release Date: April 16, 2013
Publisher: Harper Teen
Pages: 360
My Rating: 3 stars

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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?  - Goodreads

In a place called Claysoot, all the boy are taken at the age of 18. How or where... nobody knows. It's just something that happens, ready or not. The description only gives the tiniest bit of the plot away, which to me, was quite predictable. It was pretty interesting, and it kept my attention fairly well, though. There were some moments here and there when I was actually curious as to how things would go down and I liked a few of the ideas presented, too!

I was really looking forward to read from a guy's point of view, but holy cow, this dude really just rubbed me the wrong way. He seemed overly dramatic in a few situations and there were times when I really couldn't believe that he hadn't figured such obvious things out earlier. Eh, maybe I'm the only one who didn't like Gray, but SERIOUSLY.

Another thing I wanted to bring up is the whole "love" part of this story. I'm a big, BIG fan of romance, and although it's usually included in any YA book, that doesn't mean it's always written in a way that works.. and in this case, it didn't really impress me at all. I kind of think it would have been better if it were left out altogether because it just didn't seem very real at all due to how "out of nowhere" it seemed, and it kept popping up as if it were a huuuge deal. Plus there's a love triangle that infuriates me (I'm not someone who instantly hates all love triangles, by the way) because I don't think either "couple" really bonded or had any special moments, and Gray just acts like a total ass about the situation at the end.

Overall, Taken is one of many dystopian books with an intriguing concept, but I thought it was just 'okay'. Although, I would possibly recommend it, even if it's only to hear what others think about it. There is some action and world building, but for me it just wasn't enough to stand out. Are any of you guys going to read the sequel when it comes out next year?


  1. I've been wanting to read this book for months but have seen a ton of reviews where the reader had some issues with it. Looks like everyone is right! I would have the same issues with it as you did. I don't like underdeveloped relationships and male MCs are always a hit or miss. Either I love them or they annoy the crap out of me the whole time. If I do ever get around to this, I'll probably just borrow it from the library. Great review, thanks for being honest!

  2. I enjoyed this book. I enjoyed the world-building and I thought having the male POV was interesting, although Gray was a bit annoying sometimes. The love triangle was pretty unnecessary, and I didn't feel like I got to know either of the girl characters enough to really be rooting for one versus the other. I ended up thinking the book was good. Not great, but good. ~Pam

  3. Hmm, I've so been looking forward to reading this one, but I've seen a lot of mixed reviews. It does seem like Gray is one of the main reasons why people don't like the story(or have some issues with it), so I'm apprehensive.