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Taken (Taken #1)

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  8,370 ratings  ·  1,134 reviews
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 questio
Hardcover, 360 pages
Published April 16th 2013 by HarperTeen
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Splintered by A.G. HowardTaken by Erin BowmanMILA 2.0 by Debra DrizaThe Madman's Daughter by Megan ShepherdThe Cadet of Tildor by Alex Lidell
YA Debuts 2013
2nd out of 528 books — 2,458 voters
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YA Novels of 2013
53rd out of 1,531 books — 10,659 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Actual rating: 4.5 stars

Writing this review is extremely difficult for me, not only because I absolutely loved Taken, and writing reviews for books I love is usually a difficult process for me (if you haven't noticed, I'm not the most eloquent reviewer. I use gifs and tend to swear. Often.), because I always feel like I am not doing the book I'm reviewing justice with my words, and other times, I'm just at a loss for said words.

Though with Taken, that is not entirely why writing this review is
Such a shame especially that up until almost halfway I would have given this book a good 3 stars. It has such a unique premise with a super intriguing world that could have been awesome had it been executed much better. Unfortunately with an insufferable protagonist, the world building and plot were all that this book had left, and after seeing the halfway mark come and go, I realized that in both of these aspects it was beginning to fail miserably--and it didn't stop.

Gray Weathersby is not a l
I had a very vague idea (er...mostly no idea, actually) what TAKEN was about when I began reading. Dystopian and some action? Cool, I thought. I'll read this on my transatlantic plane trip, and...

::times passes::

I glanced up at the big TV-clock-thingy. WHAT?! We're already landing?! I forced myself to ignore the turbulent ride down to the tarmac--I WAS SO CLOSE TO THE END, and I just HAD to know what would happen!

Fortunately, in case you were worried, I managed to finish just as the plane touche
Dec 24, 2012 Mitch rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Mitch by: Katy
Taken is one of those books that relies on secrets and lies to build suspense leading up to the big payoff, which means two things. One, unfortunately it's a tough book to review because spoilers are a definite no-no, can't ruin it for those of you yet to read it, can I? But more importantly two, what's behind the curtain has to be good, or at least worth the price of admission of pulling it back.

And in Taken's case, it wasn't. I want to say I felt like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz who's just pee
Kat Kennedy
So I really wanted to like this one, but I just didn’t and the more I think about it, the less I like it. For me, the biggest problem was Gray, whose head we experience the world in. If you don’t like a protagonist in a novel that is narrated in the first person then that’s an immediate problem – one that is probably highly dependent on the individual reading. Gray just didn’t feel like a real character to me. It was hard to explain exactly what it was I didn’t like about his personality, but wh ...more
Wendy Darling
If you guess the big twist in the very first chapter, it definitely affects the way you view the rest of the book. But then again, there are books/films I can experience over and over again knowing full well what happens, and I still love them. Unfortunately, this one doesn't fall into that category, even on first reading--what a disappointment!

Review to come.
Maja (The Nocturnal Library)
It took me over a month to read Taken, which must be some kind of a record for me. I don’t usually do that – I either finish the book right away, or I just give up. Taken didn’t grab me as it should have, but at the same time, I felt that abandoning it would be unjustified since there was nothing technically wrong with it. In the end, I managed to talk myself into finishing it, but aside from a few gripping moments, my effort brought me no reward. I should have saved myself the trouble.

On the su
Taken was another book which I was extremely looking forward to reading. It had a unique premise; at 18 years old, boys in Claysoot are Heisted, why did this happen no one knew, but it was a ritual established in Claysoot for many years. These boys were also meant to be slated before their Heist, these slatings were organised eventually to result in an offspring, so that they would continue their family line, before they were Heisted. With everyone just accepting this extraordinary phenomena I w ...more
Jenni Arndt
After seeing some not so favorable reviews of Taken roll in, I was pretty wary going into the novel. I was told by multiple sources to lower my expectations in hopes that if I did it would seem better. So lower my expectations I did, and it did not work. This novel was full of unrealistic conveniences, a terrible love triangle and a male MC who made me want to pull my hair out. I don’t really have anything positive to say about the novel so we will see how this goes.

I’ll start with Gray. What a
Jaime Arkin
First of all... Dystopian told in a male point of view...


And let me tell you, Erin Bowman does not disappoint.

In Claysoot, men are in the minority, in fact, there aren't any past the age of eighteen. At midnight on a boys eighteenth birthday, the Heist happens. "The ground shakes, the wind howls and a blinding light descends... and he's gone." The older residents don't remember much about how Claysoot came about only that they woke up and found themselves in the walled in city and shortly afte
Neil(ed) it!
"Second chance is not the same as forgiveness."

Oftentimes, I don't read the blurb. I usually add books to my list because of the cover and the genre. By genre, I mean dystopia or sci-fi most of the time. And Taken is one of those books. I really love the cover of this book like seriously.

When I started reading the book, I have no idea what it was all about but after a few chapters, I understand what the book wants to deliver to me. Though I sense a well-used plot of something about "walls", "e
Jessie  (Ageless Pages Reviews)
Read This Review & More Like It On My Blog!

I am so disappointed. I had such a good streak going. Three, nearly four, months and eighty books into 2013, I'd only had one 1-star read before this. I started Taken with high hopes - that cover! that synopsis! - that quickly, and I mean QUICKLY, plummeted from "this is going to be good!" to "Oh, no..." to "To DNF or to not DNF?" to "I just want this to be over." Thankfully, my pain was rather short lived this time. Taken is three hundred odd pages
I liked that Bowman tried to make this book different with the strange, and slightly disturbing concept. But by the end, I felt that she pulled out all the stops, and it ended up being your typical dystopian.

THE HEISTS - I'm a huge dystopian fan, but these days, there is such an influx of them, and they really do all start sounding the same. So I'm all for a different concept - even if it's a bit riske. I think Bowman was very bold to create a society where boys disappear on the 18th birth
Actual rating: 2.5 stars

Spoilers ahead

This is the most confusing book to review. I probably won't even make sense, but I just have to try.

There were so many things wrong with Taken, and I blame Gray's character development for the most part. The plot is nothing new (but it's still okay) and the overall concept didn't feel dystopian whatsoever.
dystopia - An imagined place or state in which everything is unpleasant or bad, typically a totalitarian or environmentally degraded one.
Taken may mee
4.5 stars

I loved this book! It had me at the edge of my seat from the first page to the last.
This was one of those books that you just want to hug because it was just THAT good.

My review can also be found on my blog Collections.

May contain minor spoilers.

Taken started off good for me. Even though I had an idea where the story was headed, I was still immediately intrigued with what the main character Gray was going through, and I really liked that the book was from the male perspective. I couldn't wait to know more about him and Emma, the girl he liked, and watch their relationship develop while they tried to solve the mystery revolving around the Heist.

Unfortunately my
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
I started this book on January 11, and I didn't pick it up at all in February. Finally, sick of having it on my currently reading shelf, I picked it up again on March 18, and determined to power through. Well, obviously I wasn't that into it to begin with if I left it alone for a month and a half. It shouldn't take me two months to read a book.

Picking it back up, I was even more bored than before, with no patience for the unnecessary descriptions (two boys are carrying water and either have blis
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperTeen and Edelweiss.)
Gray’s brother Blaine is about to turn 18, which means that he will soon be lost to the ‘heist’. Every male in Claysoot is taken at the strike of midnight on their 18th birthday, the ground shakes and a bright light envelops them, and then they are gone.

With Blaine gone, Gray is alone, apart from Emma, a girl who was Blaine’s best friend, who Gray has always had feelings for. W
Shanyn (Chick Loves Lit)
It takes a little extra oomph for me to pick up a dystopian or paranormal novel over a contemporary, and for TAKEN it was the cover and mention of excitement on countless blogs for a Top Ten Tuesday feature. I had heard about it here and there but hadn't really committed myself to reading it until so many blogs exclaimed excitement and I decided to look into it for myself.

Full Review:
3.5 Stars

I feel like there was one reason in particular most readers would want to read this, to find out what all this "Heist" business is about.

I've read several books just due to my interest level concerning the twist or the big reveal, but Taken has got to be one of the more disappointing books in terms of its big "twist." The rest of it was mighty fine, and I would even stretch to say I was into most of it...but this twist..

I'm obviously not going to reveal what happens, but it is discov
Kathy Martin
TAKEN was a very promising debut novel. The characters were well-written and well-rounded and the writing didn't get in the way of the story. There was enough description and world-building and the author didn't inundate us with large info-dumps.

TAKEN stands out among the large current crop of dystopias because of its well thought out plot and intriguing characters. Grey Weatherby is the younger more impulsive brother. When his older brother Blaine reaches eighteen and is removed from their town
Cait Grace
Woah...that was seriously disappointing. I felt like this book had a dystopian-check-list on hand and just ticked the boxes...unemotionally. I'm REALLY sad about that. I wanted to love it! But (and it could totally be just me) I didn't connect.

The premise is awesome though! That's what originally drew me in. It sounded so different and goodness knows I've read enough dystopians to be hungry for something different. BUT IT WASN'T. (view spoiler)
Seen at Scott Reads It!
3.5 Stars
Taken had so much potential and I thought that I would without a doubt love it. Based on the fantastic blurb and that eye catching cover, I expected that Taken would be truly extraordinary. In my opinion Taken falls too short, there is so much that Erin Bowman could have done but neglected to do.

Taken starts off extremely interesting with a very original concept. We have a society called Claysoot where men disappear on their 18th birthday and are never seen aga

TAKEN… so many things going on and I don’t know if I liked that part of it or not.

Start with a boy, almost a man really, who’s resigned to what’s coming and more than just lost over what his brother and others like him have had to suffer. Shift to that boy making some unexpected discoveries and then shift again to him being told how things are yet surprisingly enough accepting things as is. Surprising given the fact that he’s so loud, almost proud, about being reactive and gut-feel about
Jul 20, 2012 Ain020596 marked it as to-read
This book sounds cool, but I think it may face a problem a lot of people face with Dystopians; What led to this dystopia in the first place? That led to something so drastic, like removing all men at the age of 18? Is it logical, or would the reason be a shoddy excuse for the foundation of the entire dystopia?

Looking forward to the book, but I hope the question gets answered!:)



HOLY PIXIE FAIRYDUST! What a gorgeous cover! GAH. Want. Now.
Kat Heckenbach
This is the first time I've detailed out my rating system, but I feel I need to.

Five stars is "Wow, I'm so putting this in my permanent library as a definite read-again."

Four stars is "Loved it, but it didn't completely knock my socks off and leave me breathless."

Three stars is "I liked this book, it held my interest for the most part, but I'll probably just pass my copy on to someone else."

Two stars is "Head-desk."

One star is "Did you graduate elementary school?"

I don't bother reviewing one-sta
Jen (The Starry-Eyed Revue)
**Fair warning: this review will contain spoilers, ranting, and likely some swear words.**

I was excited to get my hands on an ARC of this book. It had some serious potential, and I couldn't wait to find out what that whole Heist situation was about. But I quit reading at page 132, so I guess someone's just going to have to tell me. Nothing major happened on that particularpage, and I hadn't yet thrown the book across the room, but I'd had enough. The throwing fit was coming, and I could've used
After Grays brother Blaine turns 18 and is taken by the heist, Gray finds a hidden letter.
The letter is addressed to his brother, and is from his deceased mother.
In it, is a confession that Gray and Blaine's upbringing is more than what it seemed, but it cuts off at the crucial part.
Looking for answers, he climbs over the wall, which nobody has ever survived.
Will he find the answers he's looking for?

Taken caught my attention early on, when the letter was found.
I desperately wanted to know what
the golden witch.
Oh, Taken, I had such high hopes for you. You had such a cool premise - an alien-type of abduction thing, a dystopian thing, a battle of the sexes-kinda-thing. Where did it all go wrong? No, don't make me answer that now. I'll go into it soon enough. Unfortunately, even with an awesome cover and an awesome blurb (which, really, thinking as I've read all three books it mentions as "X meets Y and then Z", I should have seen all of this coming), "Taken" really, really, really failed to live up to e ...more
Amber (Books of Amber)
And the award for Biggest Disappointment of 2013 So Far goes to....! Along with the rest of the blogosphere, I was dying to read Taken. Who wouldn't be, especially after the cover reveal. I admit, the cover raised my expectations quite a bit. I'm a loser like that. Unfortunately Taken was pretty much your generic dystopian. It offered nothing new, unless you count the male POV as 'new', and because of that it was easy to figure out where the story was going.

Firstly, there are a few minor spoiler
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Erin Bowman used to tell stories visually as a web designer. Now a full-time writer, she relies solely on words. She lives in New Hampshire with her family and when not writing she can often be found hiking, commenting on good typography, and obsessing over all things Harry Potter.

Erin is represented by Sara Crowe of Harvey Klinger. She is the author of TAKEN, FROZEN, and FORGED (4/14/15) from Har
More about Erin Bowman...

Other Books in the Series

Taken (3 books)
  • Frozen (Taken, #2)
  • Forged (Taken, #3)
Frozen (Taken, #2) Forged (Taken, #3) Stolen (Taken, #0.5) Vengeance Road Altered Perceptions

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“Second chances are not the same as forgiveness.” 45 likes
“No matter how obvious something may seem, there are two sides to every story.” 37 likes
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