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The Taken

(Celestial Blues #1)

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  2,448 ratings  ·  421 reviews
“Exceptional. Mystery, crime scene drama, and more than enough romance to keep the heart pumping blend seamlessly into an enthralling read that kept me glued to the pages.”
—Kim Harrison

“A delectably dark paranormal thriller. I’ve always been a fan of Pettersson’s work, but she knocks it out of the park with this one.”
—Kelley Armstrong

Vicki Pettersson, author of the New Yor
Paperback, 417 pages
Published June 12th 2012 by Harper Voyager (first published June 4th 2012)
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Average rating 3.44  · 
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 ·  2,448 ratings  ·  421 reviews

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Apr 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: robert-s-reads
It wasn’t love at first sight. No, it was more like casual curiosity in a sea of strangers where one stood out a little more than all the rest, wearing a tailored suit and an upturned do whereas the other women wore red dresses and spiked heels. But I was intrigued enough to continue the flirtatious glances, and she was inviting enough to offer up those baby blues and batted eyelashes and slight smiles when I least expected them, and before either of us realized it, the glances led to a conversa ...more
Even though I'm not especially fond of angels, I decided to try out this new series based on my previous experiences with Vicki Pettersson's work. Sadly, after an intriguing first chapter, any enjoyment I may have expected never came knocking (guess it was too busy knockin' on heaven's door).

Meet one of the two main characters, rockabilly girl Katherine "Kit" Craig. She's an eternally optimistic and peppy reporter whose best friend and co-worker, Nicole, was just murdered while following a lead.
Cat Russell  (Addicted2Heroines)
There are books and characters I've thoroughly enjoyed that over time have blended in with others in their genre, no longer standing out in my mind. Then there are books and characters that leave such an impression that they serve as a reminder of why I initially fell in love with reading. This is one of those stories.

Pettersson has a truly impressive writing style with descriptions that are clever and incredibly vivid. She also possesses a talent for world building, providing enough detail so
Jul 23, 2012 rated it did not like it
I have never been so happy to be done with a book. Possibly ever. This was a great idea so poorly executed it made me want to cry. I just kept reading about how amazing this book was. There were recommendations from authors I love singing about how this is the best book they have read in a millennium. It would have no be at least decent right? Wrong.

400 pages of “I am so rockabilly no one understands me. This is a lifestyle not just me playing dress up. I should be working on the murder mystery
Sher Free
May 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
First I have to start by saying that I should not have liked this book. While it offers an intriguing, very original mash-up ~ urban fantasy with a rockabilly noir mystery ~ … it's also an angel book. I detest angel books, for the simple reason that you can’t have them without at least some religious overtones. Even when the angels are darkly sexy, broodingly tortured former P.I.’s. And Pettersson doesn’t hold back on stuffing The Taken with heavenly mythology and bonk-you-over-the-head piety. I ...more
Benjamin Cheah
Jul 30, 2012 rated it did not like it
I wanted to like this book, but I just couldn't. The story drew me in with its first chapter and its promise of an intriguing world and dark plotline, but these were overshadowed by all the other flaws in the story.

Consider the protagonists. They are pretty bland and stereotypical. Kit Craig, the female lead, gets a few points for originality for being a rockabilly girl, but her rockabilly persona doesn't fit in with the rest of her character. It's almost as though that part of her exists simply
May 09, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
3.5 stars - The Taken, the Celestial Blues series starter, was a mixed read for me. The first chapter was a 'grabber', but I found the next few chapters to be uneven and I kept wavering as to whether I even had the patience to continue on, because I liked the parts with leading man Grif Shaw - a 'busted' (not fallen) angel and former 50's PI - but I had a hard time connecting with leading lady Kit Craig - a newspaper reporter who embraces the 50's nostalgia driven Rockabilly lifestyle and has an ...more
Kathy (Kindle-aholic)
Nov 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: uf
Think a more violent and sexual His Girl Friday.

Griffin Shaw is an angel, of sorts, who ferries the recently departed to their next stop. Originally he was a `50s Vegas PI, but since he can't get past the murder of himself and his wife he is stuck on angelic escort detail. Then in a moment of compassion he breaks the rules and is punished by becoming flesh and blood again. He's also forced into the company of one Kit Craig, a rockabilly reporter who is marked for death because of Grif's lapse. S
Nov 07, 2013 marked it as dnf
DNF at 10%

The Taken wasn't going horribly, I just had trouble believing this whole rockabilly business. I can definitely understand somebody liking the style of a different era but it was just too weird for me here. A journalist speaking in the vernacular of another time? How would people understand what you're talking about! And smoking because it was part of the lifestyle! She divorced her husband (which btw, wasn't done in the 50s) so she could deviate from the norm...after all, I'm sure that
Lolly's Library
A cute, mostly forgettable PNR. While the story at the book's heart, the one actually driving the plot, is as dark and twisted as they come, the rest of the book is fairly prosaic. There's the spunky heroine, Katherine "Kit" Craig, this time dressed up as an "I defy you to pigeonhole me" rockabilly Lois Lane, which, I'll grant you, is an interesting twist--I haven't seen too many rockabilly dolls in modern fiction. Then there's the deep and brooding hero, Griffin Shaw, with the requisite dark pa ...more
It's Me - Yvette
This just isn’t for me. I find myself completely uninterested. DNF @ 10%.
Mar 28, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc
"You know. People treasure the moments in their lives because they know those times will soon be gone. A normal person like that girl over there focuses on the present because even if she doesn't acknowledge it, death still looms in her future."

The Taken begins with a murder and leads us on an investigation that kept me intrigued and guessing until the very end. Originally I thought I was going to be reading a new paranormal romance series but upon completing this book, I'm going to place it in
Carmel (Rabid Reads)
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

Much like the cover, this book is an interesting mix of new and old. I think the black & white artwork with a splash of colour does a good job of summing up this story in a nutshell. Griffin's fifty years dead and Kit is all about the rockabilly (50's lifestyle). In that respect, they compliment each other well. The main plot revolves around a murder investigation which I really enjoyed because it kept me guessing but in the end, I just couldn't get past the 3rd person PO
Mar 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: fans of urban fantasy, Paranormal romance
Recommended to Katy by: Amazon Vine
I read this in September 2012 but hadn't posted the review here, so here you go.

Book Info: Genre: Urban Fantasy Noir/Mystery Thriller Reading Level: Adult

Disclosure: I received a free paperback galley (uncorrected proof) from the Amazon Vine program in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis: Griffin Shaw used to be a PI, but that was back when gumshoes hoofed the streets... and he was still alive. Fifty years later, he's an angel, but that doesn't make him a saint. One small mistake has altered
Christal (Badass Book Reviews)
The Taken combined angel mythology with noir-style mystery and the retro rockabilly subculture to create a unique story. I am hooked on this new world and definitely interested to learn more about the characters, especially Grif.

Griffin Shaw is a "busted" angel who finds himself trying to protect Girl Friday and rockabilly enthusiast, Katherine "Kit" Craig from some very influential people. These men don't want their prostitution ring investigated and they will kill Kit to stop her. Grif helps K
Mar 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars

Initially, The Taken didn't fully grab my attention because I had a hard time grasping the rockabilly influences of Katherine "Kit" Craig and the story took it's time sketching out details surrounding the characters. I just couldn't see any fascination in rockabilly lifestyle, and in all honesty I didn't realize that people followed this type of living, in past. The story took it's time pulling together the characters' hows, whys and how comes, which made it for slow read for the first
May 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Highly Stylized Noir Homage
A Centurion's gig should be simple. Someone dies a sudden and violent death, he shows up to escort the terminally confused into the Everlast. That's how it's supposed to go, anyway. Doesn't mean it always goes that way.

It's not that former PI and current angel Griffin Shaw doesn't sympathize with the hooker who got her throat sliced by her last john. She's dead. It sucks. He knows, because fifty years ago he was murdered, too. He deals with it. Mostly.

So okay, he's not
Dec 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
There is a lot mystery and romance all wrapped up in this urban fantasy novel.

I had no idea what a rockabilly was before reading the The Taken. Rockabilly is one of the earliest forms of rock-n-roll from the 1950’s, and there are a group of people in contemporary times who have taken to that way of life. They dress in the 1950’s styles, and walk the talk of that time period. Kit is one of those women. It makes it much easier for Grif to slide right into the scene then, given he is straight out o
Jan 26, 2012 rated it really liked it
"Do you want to know what the difference is between sex for money and sex for free, Mr. Shaw?" Chambers' voice twisted across the room to snag Grif one last time. He waited until Grif had turned to finish. "Sex for money always costs less."

Flummoxed by the death of her best friend and newspaper photographer, Katerine "Kit" Craig embarks on a journey of discovery to answer the questions: Who killed Nicole and why?

Katherine is an investigative reporter at her family's newspaper. Kit and Nic were
Jessica (a GREAT read)
Jun 16, 2012 rated it really liked it
Finally read The Taken, Vicki Pettersson's first book in the Celestial Blues series. And it was quite different than I expected. It was an intriguing read with a good mystery built up and awesome characters, I guess I just thought there would be a little more paranormal involved. Though, we do get that with Griffin Shaw, since he's sort of an angel and all!

Griffin Shaw was murdered 50 years ago. He's now a Centurion and basically helps souls cross over. There's a more intricate process than simp
Jul 16, 2014 rated it did not like it
"The Taken" has the dubious distinction of being in a select group of books which I could not bring myself to finish, no matter how hard I might try. When stuck alone with this book and none other in my bag on mass transit, I actively resented its presence. On lunch breaks, I tried my level best to finish it, but ended up surrendering about two-thirds of the way in and just peeking to see if the ending was as stupid as I imagined it would be (spoiler: it was).

It's almost a talent to make a book
Michelle Leah Olson
Our Review by Michelle L. Olson - LITERAL ADDICTION'S Pack Alpha:

I received an ARC of this book from the Publisher in preparation for an Event that LITERAL ADDICTION was doing with Vicki in mid-June 2012. I'm a fan of Ms. Pettersson's, and seeing that this was the first in a new series I was seriously intrigued. Not to mention that the blurb was original and that peaked my interests even more.

In preparation of the read I did a little research and saw that the pre-release reader reviews were qui
Nov 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
*slight spoilers ahead*

I have to say straight away that Celestial Blues is a very different series from what Miss Pettersson wrote previously, as in it's not an urban fantasy. I was expecting one and to my (pleasant) surprise discovered that The Taken was a sort of a murder mystery with slight paranormal elements and distinct noir-ish undertones.

To give it a better definition I would describe it as a love child of Carole Nelson Douglas and Chris F. Holm.

Kit Craig is a intrepid small scale journ
All Things Urban Fantasy
Nov 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
An angelic Sam Spade with a softer side and a fast talking reporter who sees the good in everyone, the two main characters of THE TAKEN are two of my favorite tropes brought to glorious new life on the Vegas strip. Pettersson’s rich writing style brings the witty banter and glamorous fashion of noir mystery into modern day technicolor, and I could not be more fascinated by her intriguing new world.

THE TAKEN asks you to buy into two main conceits: the Rockabilly lifestyle that defines Kit Craig a
Jul 01, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nook, read-2012
Eh. I debated long and hard between 2-stars and 3-stars. Personally, it was more 2-star for me but I think that's a bit of an unfair rating, especially looking back at other books I gave 2 stars to. It's not a bad book, but I just could NOT get into it. I mean it took me a week to read it because I just didn't want to. Ultimately, I'm giving it 3 stars because I just think it's my personal bias rather than a case of a horrible book.

I didn't like the rockabilly theme or the conveniently 1950's PI
Chris Davis
I rarely quit on a book before finishing it, but I literally reached a point in this book where I realized that life was entirely too short to spend it on a book this bad.

I was really surprised by the number of stars and positive reviews this book has. The dialogue was repetitive and simplistic, as was the exposition that went along with the story itself. Which is a shame, because the story idea was actually very interesting. It was just overshadowed by the same points over and over. (Nicole is
Carol [Goodreads Addict]
I ended up liking this book more then I thought I would. I enjoyed watching the relationship grow between Griff and Kit. And I liked Griff's strong sense of right and wrong. That he fought to protect the woman he loves and to punish the men for the wrongs they have committed. What I didn't like is that it took me a long time to be able to connect with these characters. The story seemed disjointed at times. And at times, Kit's optimism was just too much. Her reaction to the death of her friend di ...more
Dec 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Readers should be warned at the outset that there are some disturbing scenes in keeping with a persistent theme of crimes against women in this dark mystery that resembles a 1950s detective novel with a supernatural twist.

Kit and Nic, best friends from way back, are an intrepid reporter & photographer team who discover that the clandestine prostitution operation they're investigating involves some of the movers & shakers of Las Vegas. Nic is murdered when she goes undercover to get more informat
Really, what was I thinking when I bought this book? While I liked Vicki Pettersson's writing style, her previous series got convoluted and ridiculous. This book is competently written, but I didn't care for any of the characters. The mystery didn't interest me and the author's fictionalized version of heaven (Everlast) and the angel hierarchy just annoyed me.

Griffin Shaw is a Centurion, which means it is his job to find the newly dead and escort them to the Everlast. However when he botches a
Kristin  (MyBookishWays Reviews)
May 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
You may also read my review here:

A seedy Las Vegas motel room. A dead hooker (or is she?) A lesser angel (and former PI) named Grif here for another Take. A nosy girl reporter out for vengeance. Sounds good so far, right? Oh, it totally is. When Griffin Shaw comes to collect this Take, he has no idea that it will set him on a course that will force him to examine his former life, and unlife. After a small act of kindness angers his bosses, he’s forced bac
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Vicki Pettersson is a NYT and USA Today bestselling author of ten novels, most set in her hometown of Las Vegas. Though she'll ever consider that glittering dustbowl home, she now divides her time between Vegas and Dallas,Texas, where she's learning to like good Tex-Mex (easy) and the Dallas Cowboys (easier than you'd think).

Her most recent release is SWERVE, aptly titled as it's both a chase boo

Other books in the series

Celestial Blues (3 books)
  • The Lost (Celestial Blues, #2)
  • The Given (Celestial Blues, #3)

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“So. You're a fallen angel." She folded her arms.
"I'm not fallen," he said roughly.
"Then what are you?"
He shrugged. "Busted.”
“ 'Everything has its place. Let in only those things that are greatly desired, no more and no less. That's how to make sense of the world, and the only real way to achieve happiness.' ” 5 likes
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