Thursday, April 3, 2014

Book Review: The Taking (ARC)

The Taking (The Taking #1)
by
Hardcover, 368 pages
Expected publication: April 29th 2014 by Harper Teen
Source: Edelweiss

Synopsis:
A flash of white light . . . and then . . . nothing.

When sixteen-year-old Kyra Agnew wakes up behind a Dumpster at the Gas ’n’ Sip, she has no memory of how she got there. With a terrible headache and a major case of déjà vu, she heads home only to discover that five years have passed . . . yet she hasn’t aged a day.

Everything else about Kyra’s old life is different. Her parents are divorced, her boyfriend, Austin, is in college and dating her best friend, and her dad has changed from an uptight neat-freak to a drunken conspiracy theorist who blames her five-year disappearance on little green men.

Confused and lost, Kyra isn’t sure how to move forward unless she uncovers the truth. With Austin gone, she turns to Tyler, Austin’s annoying kid brother, who is now seventeen and who she has a sudden undeniable attraction to. As Tyler and Kyra retrace her steps from the fateful night of her disappearance, they discover strange phenomena that no one can explain, and they begin to wonder if Kyra’s father is not as crazy as he seems. There are others like her who have been taken . . . and returned. Kyra races to find an explanation and reclaim the life she once had, but what if the life she wants back is not her own?
Review:

The gist: A girl suddenly falls unconscious only to wake up five years later wearing the same dirtied clothes and injuries with no signs of aging and no recollection of what happened in the last five years.

This is the promise that has recently dug its way into my plot weaknesses list so naturally the moment the chance to read The Taking presented itself, I immediately grabbed the opportunity. What made The Taking unputdownable from the beginning is that it has a mystery that grabs at its readers and what's more is that it starts about right off the bat.

As for the characters, I don’t really find Kyra to be a distinct one. She didn’t leave much impression on me and is easily forgettable in the world of YA heroines. She also annoyed me a couple of times. I understand that it’s hard for her to accept the changes that came her way, but what I didn’t like was how she reacted to these. Like with her younger brother who she’s often disgusted with. She also acts as if the world should revolve around her; like it owes her the five years she lost. Tyler, on the other hand, is one of the more likable characters. I love that he is very straightforward. He has feelings for Kyra and he makes sure she knew he was pursuing her. He flirts with her a lot and does so poorly at it (according to Kyra) but instead of becoming awkward, he remains extremely cute. He also talks loudly in his sleep about nonsensical things. He is adorbs!

The romance part developed too quickly for my liking though, but it’s definitely not a love at first sight. The events in the beginning of the book gave me the impression that Austin and Kyra had a really tight and solid relationship, so it beats me why Kyra moved on from Austin a tad too fast and even though she would often mention her heartbreaks about Austin and his new girlfriend, her reactions toward Tyler convey the opposite. I initially thought we were going to have a love triangle here, but it seems Austin was made annoying on purpose to lift the readers’ attention from him. But on the brighter side, I actually find the Tyler/Kyra tandem cute (if a little awkward) given their history together. Kyra has five years ahead of Tyler and as his older brother’s playmate, Kyra had too much time teasing and making Tyler cry a lot when they were younger. Now they’re the same age and both have thing for each other. Talk about awkward.

I love that the action started out early in the book and is kept at a steady pace all throughout. However, as I’m still not entirely used to the concept of aliens in books, I felt uncomfortable with some of the events here. But that aside, Kimberly still presented fascinating ideas in the world of The Taking. And I’m excited to know what happens after the last events in this book because gods, that lady is just cruel!

Rating: 3/5 stars!
Disclaimer: An e-copy was received from the publisher via Edelweiss for an honest review. No compensation of any kind was received in exchange for this.

3 comments:

  1. Hmm, as adorable as Tyler seems, I think I'd find the romance a bit awkward. I'm not really tempted by the sound of this one nor have I heard much about it, but if it gets a lot of positive ratings, I may have to change my mind. Great review, Chel!

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  2. Aww, Tyler talks in his sleep! :) That is so cute. It's a shame that the romance develops a little too quickly though - I know that will probably bother me. This sounds like a decent read overall though. Perhaps not one I'll read anytime soon, but I won't say no if I have the opportunity to. Thanks for the helpful review! :)

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  3. I recently read another review on this and found the whole book to be interesting but very weird. I'm still unsure as to how aliens play a part in this, and the romance? Ick! What in the world. If Kyra wakes up with no recollection, wouldn't she still have feelings for Austin. How can she move onto his little brother? So confusing, but I'm glad you enjoyed it Chel xx

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