Taken by Erin Bowman | Review

Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: April 16, 2013
Pages: 360
Source: Edelweiss/HarperCollins
Rating: 4 out of 5

Dystopians. By now you’d be living a rock if you didn’t know they are infiltrating the YA world. It’s getting progressively more difficult for authors to make their own world interesting, unique. After reading Taken, I can honestly say that it piqued my interest in the beginning, but after the quarter point, it turned into your typical YA Dystopian/on-the-run sort of story. Nevertheless, it was still thrilling and an exciting read that I enjoyed.
The characterization was not the strongest in Taken. I thought it was interesting that it was from male’s POV, Gray, but there wasn’t anything else that was too special about it. This could have easily been told from a female’s perspective with some roles switched. I did really like the brother-bonding between Gray and Blaine though; more sibling relationships are needed in YA! The romance did not partake too heavily in the novel. Unfortunately, there is a love triangle, but the romance only appears in the beginning and the end of the novel. I’m curious to see where the romance goes in the sequel for sure.
So what did I like about the story? As I mentioned before, the dystopian world the characters live in is highly engaging: boys disappear from their town, Claysoot when they turn eighteen and there is a Wall that cannot be surpassed. I was curious from the start, and as more answers were revealed however, Taken kind of strayed off into your typical dystopian story. I wasn’t bored though because Bowman keeps the tension on high and doesn’t slow down the plot pacing. I was thoroughly hooked to the story and the characters’ plans. Taken is a page-turner, to say the least.

To sum up, while the characters and romance weren’t the highlights of the book, and the dystopian excitement died out after a little while, the plot pacing in Taken is a redeeming factor. I’m interested in seeing how the rest of the series is headed so I’ll be picking up Frozen for sure. I recommend Taken if you’re a still can’t get enough of dystopians, of course!


5 thoughts on “Taken by Erin Bowman | Review”

  1. Hmmm. I've heard such mixed thoughts on this one. I have a copy of it so I'm going to read it eventually, but I don't know. Your review doesn't exactly have me jumping to read it lol. I do really like tension/great plot progression, though, so I'm definitely interested in seeing how that is executed.


  2. I ended up DNFing this story because I totally agree with you. The first fourth was really intriguing, but then afterwards I thought it hit a little bit of a standstill and became a typical dystopian, like you said. I'm glad that the plot redeemed it for you, because it definitely has a lot of potential!

    Fantastic review, Jen! I hope you had a great holiday and a happy new year 🙂


  3. I had a similar reaction to this one Jen! I wasn't blown away by anything about it, but I enjoyed it for the most part even though I'm worried the love triangle will become a bigger issue in book two. I'm quite made at one of the girls, and because I hold a mean grudge when a character does what she does, I don't see myself forgiving her anytime soon so I'm solidly rooting for the other girl:) That cover is absurdly gorgeous though, I just adore it:)


  4. Being the dystopian junkie that I am, of course, I think I'll be picking this one up! I have to say, it's the concept that made me add this one to my TBR in the first place, because it sounds so Maze Runner-esque and mysterious. While it's great that there's still a lot of tension and mystery in the story, I have to say that I'm disappointed because this just becomes your run-of-the-mill dystopian. Also, why couldn't Gray have been more interesting?! Ugh. There's so few YA books, out there from a male POV, let alone dystopians, so I was kind of hoping his POV would be a little less,, bland. Nonetheless, even with a love triangle, I think this one will be able to keep me engaged at the very least, since I'm always game for a page turner. 😉

    Lovely review, as always, Jen! ❤


  5. I honestly haven't read that many dystopian novels. I'm curious about checking out more, but I think it could definitely burn me out after awhile…so I'll need to take it slow. I'm sorry the premise became a bit typical after awhile but that's good you still liked it. It's always a plus if you WANT to continue with a series!



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