Saturday, March 2, 2013

Review: Taken by Erin Bowman

I wanted this book ever since I first saw the cover. Then I got accepted via Edelweiss, but it have taken me a lot of time to finally read it. And now that I have, I'm not sure what to say about it. I'm sure lots of people will love Taken, but I didn't. I didn't like it much at all, really. Have decided to give it a two star. Maybe a two point five. But it is not a three star for me.

I didn't enjoy this book. I might have liked the beginning a bit, but that was it. And many times I just wanted to stop reading it. But I did finish it, and I am glad I read it, mostly. Will try my best to tell why I didn't like it. And the few things I did like. My review won't be mean, but it will be a bit negative and honest.

When I first heard about Taken I thought the plot sounded pretty amazing. And yes, the summary is good. But it isn't like I thought it would be at all. I loved the beginning on this book. Well, okay, I loved the world in the beginning of the book. It starts in Claysoot, which seemed like a pretty awesome place to live in, despite all the men being gone, they are all being taken at age eighteen. But I loved the way they lived there. And I wish it had been more like that. But it isn't.

They have this thing called the Heist. It's what happens when the boys get taken at age 18. And I loved that. Found it to be mysterious. But then the book changes, and I didn't like anything that happened after that. Sigh. Problem might be that I failed to connect to the main character, Gray. I'm sure he's a great guy. I just didn't see it. I didn't like him much. One of the first scenes we see him in is he punching a girl who was mean to him. I didn't get that at all. I don't blame him much, but I didn't like it.

One of the things I disliked much about this book was something that happened in this town. They call it slatings. Where the boys are with a different girl each month, that the council chooses, which none of them seem to mind at all. I hated it. Fine, I get that they have sex. But being forced to, to help populate the town or whatever? I didn't like it one bit. Especially not when seventeen year old Gray admitted to having slept with about 10 different girls, while he is so in love with Emma. I didn't get it.

He also has a brother. Blaine. And they are so different, which they all keep saying all the time. Blaine is kind of gentle, Gray is an asshole. I just didn't like any of them. Then there is Emma. I didn't really like her either. Then Gray is slated to her, and they spend some weeks together as friends, even though she doesn't even like him. But then suddenly she does, and I didn't get that either. Sigh. I'm sorry. I just didn't like this book much at all. I didn't enjoy it. I didn't feel anything at all for the characters. Sigh.

Then something happens, and Gray and Emma is beyond the Wall of this town. I won't say more about that things. You can read it yourself if you want to. I liked the beginning of this book, if Gray had been better. I liked the world of Claysoot. But then we aren't there anymore. And I kind of hated everything that happened next. This wasn't the amazing world I had expected it to be. This book wasn't the amazing book I had wanted it to be. I found it to be boring. Some good moments, but I didn't enjoy it.

I didn't like the outside world at all. I see people calling this book a Dystopia book. It isn't. At all. And yeah, I feel a bit tricked about this book. But I'm still glad I read it. I think. Anyway. I won't say more about the plot. Just that I did not like this book. I didn't feel anything for the characters; I couldn't connect with any of them. At first I thought I liked the writing, but then I read more and I couldn't get into it at all :\ Characters like Frank and Harvey and Owen were boring and not written well enough.

Then there is the romance. I already knew it would be bad, since I peeked at the ending. But seriously? I hated the romance in this book. I really, truly did. I could have liked Emma and Gray together. Except for the fact that they aren't together. And then suddenly two months pass, and Gray starts feeling things for this other girl, Bree, even though he doesn't do anything about it. But yeah. I hated it. Then we see that Emma has done something truly stupid, and I ended up just hating them both. Which sucked, tbh.

I didn't get it at all. Sure, I'm okay with sex in books. I would love for there to be more sex in YA books. But I DO NOT want it with other people! Seriously. If there is sex in a book, please let it be with the main couple or not at all. At least, that is my opinion. I do not want them to have sex with other people. I don't care about the little details. I just do not approve and I didn't like it at all. I'm sorry. But yeah. I'm being honest, and I needed to say why I didn't like this book. I wanted it to be good, but it wasn't.

Anyway. That's all I have to say about this book. I'm sure others will like it. Maybe. I just didn't. At all. So yeah. It is a two star for me. I'm sorry. I might read the sequel, but I'm not sure yet. I know I won't re-read this book. Sorry for being so negative in my review, but yeah, that is just how I felt about this book :) Thank you so much to the publisher, HaperTeen, and Edelweiss for the chance to read and review this book early. <3 I'm glad I read it, and I'll still be getting my pre-ordered hardcopy of the book.


  1. Interesting. I was not aware of the sex in this book! I was mostly interested in this because I like books with guys as the main characters, but when they're jerks I tend to dislike the book as well...

  2. oh wow.. Gary DOES seem like a douche... correction, the whole TOWN seems to be full of douches, controlled by men to force the one to do whatever they wanted.. the feminist in me died a little at reading your review. You've said "I don't like it" over 15 times here.. i think I can get a hint huh?

    really great and honest review, I appreciate that,
    - Juhina @ Maji Bookshelf

    1. Thank you <3 But uhm, you didn't get it right. It isn't controlled by men at all. Like I said, there isn't ANY MEN in this town. Only boys :)

  3. I was approved for this too, but I decided pretty quickly afterwards that I didn't want to read it any more. :/ I feel a little guilty, but the reviews so far have been far too mixed. Sorry you didn't like it, Carina! The things you mentioned sound like aspects that might frustrate me, too, especially romance-wise. Thanks for your honest review!

  4. Sorry you didn't like this one more. Thanks for the review and for explaining where the book fell short for you. Hope the next book you read is better! :)


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