Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Taken (Taken, #1)” as Want to Read:
Taken (Taken, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview


(Taken #1)

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  12,058 ratings  ·  1,437 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
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Taken, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
nik I didn't care for the writing style. It felt rushed and underdeveloped. I didn't feel connected to the characters in a meaningful way at all. I didn't…moreI didn't care for the writing style. It felt rushed and underdeveloped. I didn't feel connected to the characters in a meaningful way at all. I didn't feel like there were real heavy emotional moments personally but I'm sure that is due, in part to the fact that I didn't feel much for any of the characters. The idea is a fire e idea but I felt like it was left a little hollow and rushed. That said it's a really easy, super fast read so you don't lose much time by reading it even if you don't love it but I'd say check it out at the library rather than shell out the $10. But that's just my opinion. Good luck.(less)
Erin Bowman Hi there! I'm so glad you're loving the Taken trilogy!

STOLEN gives insight and background to Bree's character, and there are a few details in the nove…more
Hi there! I'm so glad you're loving the Taken trilogy!

STOLEN gives insight and background to Bree's character, and there are a few details in the novella that come up in both FROZEN and FORGED. Because of this, I always suggest reading STOLEN after TAKEN but before finishing the series. Hope you enjoy. :)(less)
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
511 books — 2,428 voters
Allegiant by Veronica RothClockwork Princess by Cassandra ClareRequiem by Lauren OliverThe Indigo Spell by Richelle MeadThe Elite by Kiera Cass
YA Novels of 2013
1,517 books — 10,968 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.76  · 
Rating details
 ·  12,058 ratings  ·  1,437 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Taken (Taken, #1)
Nov 12, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: arc, ebook
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
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
Will M.
Sep 22, 2015 rated it it was ok
Based on the premise, I thought this could be the novel that would change my perception of the YA genre. Unfortunately, it only further degraded the genre for me.

Predictable, underdeveloped characters, and weak plot. After the first 50 pages or so, the novel started going downhill. It's a surprise that I managed to reach page 266, but by then it was unbearable. I had to put the novel down before I end up rating it 1 star.

The biggest question is for you YA lovers is, "Was the novel really that b
Oct 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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 23, 2012 rated it it was ok
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
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 a
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
Nov 23, 2012 rated it did not like it
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
Neil (or bleed)
Jun 21, 2013 rated it really liked 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",
Z (Through The Inked Pages)
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.
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, bu
Dec 23, 2012 rated it liked it
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
Sarah Elizabeth
(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

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
Andis / Slytherin 🐍
Apr 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
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.
Shanyn (Chick Loves Lit)
Jan 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: dac13
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: http://chickloveslit.com/2013/01/revi...
Starry-Eyed Jen
**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 particular page, 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
Nov 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
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
Nov 28, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc-galley

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
Kathy Martin
Mar 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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
Empress Reece (Hooked on Books)
In Claysoot, all boys vanish on their eighteenth birthday. The residents call it the heist. They have no idea why it happens or where all of the boys go. No one has ever even questioned it, until now, that is...

I really like this book. I knew when I read the preview that I had to read it & it was going to be good. Luckily, I was not disappointed. : ) From the very beginning, I grew attached to the characters and the alternate world the story is in. The world is really unique and different from a
Jul 07, 2012 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.
Jodi Meadows
Nov 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
♡Julalicious Book Paradise♡
Feb 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned, signed-books
review to come.

I'll concentrate more on my reading than my review at least until March. Sorry :\
Jun 11, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It seemed so interesting in the beginning.

My Synopsis:
Gray had lived in Claysoot for about 17 years. Every boy got Heisted at the age of 18 here. There were no men. The town was surrounded by the Wall. People were told that no one could survive once they went over the Wall.
Gray's brother, Blaine, was 18 and he got Heisted. Gray was trying to find a way to get his brother back. However, he discovered something more.

The reason why I picked up this book is because this book had bee
Wayland Smith
May 09, 2022 rated it it was ok
In the village of Claysoot, males disappear on their 18th birthday. It's just the way things are, like their world is bounded by the Wall. When people try and climb the Wall, their burned bodies are found, so there's no escape that way. Gray Weathersby doesn't consider questioning his fate. The Heist, what they call it when the males vanish, is just a part of life. Then he learns a few things that have him questioning everything.

Bit by bit, he discovers nothing is the way he thought it was. The
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Reboot (Reboot, #1)
  • Resist (Breathe, #2)
  • Altered (Altered, #1)
  • Breathe (Breathe, #1)
  • Variant (Variant, #1)
  • Feedback (Variant, #2)
  • The Replaced (The Taking, #2)
  • The Loners (Quarantine, #1)
  • Blackout (Blackout, #1)
  • Sky on Fire (Monument 14, #2)
  • Monument 14 (Monument 14, #1)
  • The Taking (The Taking, #1)
  • Lucian
  • Disruption (Disruption, #1)
  • Corruption (Disruption, #2)
  • Fated (Soul Seekers, #1)
  • The Madman’s Daughter (The Madman’s Daughter, #1)
  • The Saints (Quarantine, #2)
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Erin Bowman is the critically acclaimed author of numerous books for children and teens, including the Taken Trilogy, Vengeance Road, Retribution Rails, the Edgar Award-nominated Contagion duology, The Girl and the Witch’s Garden, and the forthcoming Dustborn. A web designer turned author, Erin has always been invested in telling stories—both visually and with words. Erin lives in New Hampshire wi ...more

Other books in the series

Taken (3 books)
  • Frozen (Taken, #2)
  • Forged (Taken, #3)

Related Articles

Regular Goodreaders will already know that, each calendar month, we generate lists of that month’s most anticipated books, including romance...
68 likes · 10 comments
“Second chances are not the same as forgiveness.” 60 likes
“No matter how obvious something may seem, there are two sides to every story.” 49 likes
More quotes…