The Taken (The Celestial Blues #1) by Vicki Petersson
Harper Voyager (June 2012) | Paperback, 432 pages

Urban Fantasy

When I heard about Vicki Pettersons new series, I was instantly anticipating its release. I loved the first book in her Zodiac Series and so this looked promising.

After finishing The Taken, I am at odds on how I feel about it. True, I did enjoy the book and it was a very different beast from her Zodiac Series, but it hasn’t made that much of an impact that makes the book an unforgettable read.

The plot of the book is very straightforward and erred more to the crime genre than the Urban Fantasy fare. The main difference being that the male lead Griffin Shaw is a Centurion, one of Gods servants whose job it is to escort the recently deceased who have succumbed to a violent end, on to the Everlast (Heaven). He mucks up his latest “Take” and ends up being tasked in watching as our female heroine Kit Craig is murdered.

Being the chivalrous gentleman he is, Griff intervenes yet again and ends up being Kits guardian angel. The fact that Kit’s best friend was the soul that Griff mucked up on and that she died due to an investigation into a prostitution ring running out of a seedy motel.

Thus the book turns into a crime noir type book, with a few paranormal elements thrown in for good measure. I am not unfamiliar with these types of books, having been a fan of the Harry Dresden books by Jim Butcher. Yet, at times I felt this book really did drag with very little plot development going on.

By half way through the book, I managed to figure out that it was all to do with this list of names that Kit and her friend had been given. When Griff and Kit gatecrash the party of a high profile Morman minister, you knew that he was a big part of it. There is no subtlety in this and no attempt to hide his involvement. The whole cover up is hinged on the fact that the villain has cops in his pocket and evidence of powerful men visiting his underground brothel.

This was a big problem for me with the book. It seemed to be going through the motions in order to get Griff and Kit together. Even in this instance, there was little build up.

Griff is supposed to instantly find Kit attractive, even though he is still in love with his dead wife. He admits that Kit is the polar opposite to his wife and that he doesn’t know why he is attracted to her.

For me Griff was a very one dimensional character. I didn’t get a feel for him at all in this book. I wasn’t able to connect with him in any way and therefor found it hard to root for him to triumph. This was a major failing for me and in fact applies to the character of Kit too.

Kit was billed as this free-spirited and independent woman. This is repeated time and time again to the point that this gets her into trouble more than once throughout the book. There is a fine line for a character in being strong and then being so stubborn that they end up in trouble. Kit fell into the latter character a couple of times. On retrospect, I think this was just to benefit the progress of the plot.

It looks like from the above words that I didn’t enjoy the book. This isn’t the case, because I did like it. I just didn’t love it. This book is more akin to the pilot episodes to TV shows. It gives you a slight taste of what is to come and gives a solid foundation to the rest of the series. With the groundwork now set, we can move on to other aspects of the world, one which I hope gets answered. This is what has happened to Griffs wife as she hasn’t moved on to Paradise. I also want to find out why Griff and his wife were killed. It is hinted that there was more to Griff’s wife than what he believes.

Another interesting aspect I hope is covered is Griff himself. He is now an Angelic Human. He is now flesh and bone, but he has some sort of immortality.

VERDICT:

The book was an enjoyable read, but I can’t pick out why I found it so enjoyable. The author is brilliant at her world building and manages to differentiate between the Vegas of this series and that of her Zodiac Series. However, it is still to be seen whether this will be as good as her Zodiac series.

RATING:

VICKI PETERSON ONLINE
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BOOKS IN SERIES ORDER

  1. The Taken
  2. The Lost

BUY YOUR COPY

Gemma

A self confessed geek who likes all things paranormal (except zombies as they scare her) Genre wise she likes horror, paranormal romance, urban fantasy and historical fiction. [Gemma no longer reviews for BCC]

8 Comments


Mardel November 28, 2012 at 2:58 am

I totally get your point here. With some writers, I enjoy absolutely everything they write, multiple series, or standalones, whatever. Then again, with some writers I completely love one series, but not so much another series they write. I might enjoy other books by said writers, but not love them. That’s the world of reading and writing, though, right?

Reply

Gemma November 28, 2012 at 8:37 am

Thats very true. I think with this series, Petterson is trying to get away from her previous series and try something new. For me, it just didn’t quite hit the mark. I’m not sure why because I did like the book, but if someone asked me why I wouldn’t be able to tell them.

Reply

kara-karina November 28, 2012 at 5:42 am

Thanks for a great review, Gemma! I’ve had this one on my wishlist for a while but I’ll borrow from the local library this time in case I feel the same way about it as you. :)

Reply

Gemma November 28, 2012 at 8:38 am

I think that is a safe bet. It is a shame as I had really high hopes for this series

Reply

Rebecca November 29, 2012 at 7:26 am

I’m disappointed that this book left you wanting more. The story line had so much potential.

Reply

Gemma November 29, 2012 at 8:40 am

It really did, but for some reason it didn’t seem to go anywhere. I’m still puzzled on why I enjoyed it, yet I can’t really remember much about it

Reply

Melanie November 29, 2012 at 9:15 pm

Its too bad this is a bit ‘meh’ I really liked the zodiac series..still tempted though

Reply

Gemma November 30, 2012 at 9:31 am

Its not that I didn’t enjoy it, I did. If you were to ask me why, I would be stumped…..

Reply

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