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The Taker: Book One of the Taker Trilogy Hardcover – September 6, 2011
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“Readers won’t be able to tear their eyes away from Katsu’s mesmerizing tale.” —Starred Booklist
"Alchemy and love prove a volatile mix in Katsu's vividly imagined first novel ... Katsu shows considerable skill in rendering a world where Adair's unspeakable evilness and Lanny's wild passion make the supernatural seem possible. The result is a novel full of surprises and a powerful evocation of the dark side of romantic love." —Publishers Weekly
“Alma Katsu’s The Taker is a frighteningly compelling story about those most human monsters—desire and obsession. It will curl your hair and keep you up late at night.” —Keith Donohue, bestselling author of The Stolen Child
“Alma Katsu’s searing tale of otherworldly lovers and eternal obsession will seduce you from page one. With its elegant prose and riveting plot, The Taker is as irresistible as the hauntingly beautiful, pleasure-seeking immortals who scorch its pages. A wicked, sensuous, shattering love story that I can’t recommend enough. You have to experience it for yourself!” —Kresley Cole, #1 New York Times bestselling author
"Alma Katsu's debut takes the reader on a spell-binding journey through time. This sensual tale of star-crossed love, betrayal and redemption is a rare and addictive treat. Pleasurable from page one." —Danielle Trussoni, New York Times bestselling author of Angelology
“The Taker is a sexy, dark romance. Alma Katsu’s tale of immortality and unrequited love covers hundreds of years but never strays from this question: What price are we willing to pay to completely possess another?” —Alexi Zentner, author of Touch
“A centuries-spanning epic that will keep you turning pages all night. This marvelous debut is a thinking person’s guilty pleasure.” —Scott Westerfeld, New York Times bestselling author of Leviathan
“Alma Katsu’s addictive tale of immortal love is brutal, wrenching, and ultimately moving. Gothic and richly detailed, The Taker it is an astonishing good read.” —Meg Waite Clayton, bestselling author of The Wednesday Sisters
“This is a great book. And by great, I mean, devastatingly so, like reading The Scarlet Letter, while riding a roller coaster, on acid. Seductive, daring, soaring, and ultimately gut-wrenching, The Taker is a lush, historical rendering of transcendent love, paranormal beings, and the depths of pain that can be felt by immortal hearts.” —Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
"It renews a genre...and makes it intimate again." —Locus Magazine
Looking for a good read? Get ready to hear about a time-transcending page turner. Two years ago,having just finished The Vampire Chronicles by Anne Rice and The Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer, I was still hungry for more of the supernatural. My only hesitation was that I wanted something a little more plausible than blood-sucking vampires. As fate would have it, I stumbled upon The Taker by Alma Katsu. Dutifully, I checked reviews before purchasing the book. How I hadn’t heard of it prior to then is beyond me, as the book was insanely well-receiveda nd only growing in popularity. I took the novel home and was blown away by the captivating story of an impressionable young woman, the “Adonis” who she falls in love with and the “monster” who falls in love with her. Lanore, Jonathan and Adair had me spellbound like no other characters have. The Taker satiated my need for the supernatural, but was unique in it’s portrayal of everlasting love and unrelenting obsession, both of which know no boundaries for these characters. The second installment, The Reckoning, was equally fascinating—the never-ending love chase propelling the jump between several different time periods and beautiful locations all over the world. Finally, the end of this twisted tale will come to an end with Katsu’s final installment, The Descent. (Jennifer Castro, Cliche Magazine)
About the Author
Alma Katsu was born in Alaska and raised near Concord, Massachusetts. She has a BA in writing from Brandeis University and an MA from the Johns Hopkins Writing Program. She lives with her husband in Virginia. Visit her online at AlmaKatsu.com or follow her on Twitter.
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Top customer reviews
So, what is there to like about "The Taker?" For me, it's greatest asset is it's original premise and plot as well as writing that is at once clunky and elegant. For all that I found the shifting POVs and tenses a bit unusual and mildly distracting they were fairly well integrated and not hard to follow. The plot and premise are original even though you will easily recognize elements of the Vampire mythos at work in the characters of Adair, Lanore/Lanny and Jonathan. That said, the author uses this well worn mythos in an original and fascinating way.
This is the first of a trilogy and I am on the fence as to whether or not I'll continue the series. I can't say I LIKED this book in the sense that I was satisfied with the ending. Further, it's hard to say that I like a book when there was no single character that I found sympathetic or likable. Indeed, I think of it rather like the terrible multi-car pile-up one might encounter on the highway. You know you should look away, but your morbid curiosity makes you want to know if anyone survived.
Lanore... How do I describe my feelings toward the main character? I can't really say that I like her so much as I pity her. She's loyal to a fault and will do anything to demonstrate her devotion to Jonathan, even when it comes to her own, his, or other's demise. As long as she has him in her life, she doesn't seem to care too much about the rest. She isn't necessarily a bad person, but a woman who loves too deeply and finds herself in a horrible situation. She is extremely selfish but selfless at the same time, a complex character who surprises the reader with an odd mix of nobility and wickedness.
**Side note ~ I think Lanore is the taker. There are multiple "takers" in this novel, but she is the ultimate one. She takes more than she gives, even when it comes to Jonathan, the love of her life. Whether it is conscious manipulation or mostly just the way circumstances fall, Lanore seems to inevitably cause destruction. Almost every move she makes is to prove her love and loyalty, but it always, always seems to go wrong.**
The story goes back and forth from present day to the 1800s. Luke is an interesting diversion in the book, adding someone readers can relate to in the present. Also, he sees Lanny in a different light than the other characters seem to in the book. He views her as a woman full of a thousand memories and experience, while the other characters treat her as naive, coy, and non-threatening, even after she lives a few years with Adair and his never-ending exploits. We get to see Lanore through an awed stranger's eyes, giving readers a different feel for her presence. It's almost as if she's two completely different characters ~ Lanny of the Past and Lanny of the Present.
The writing style of this novel is incredibly descriptive and the tone is always perfectly set. I was always hopeful for Lanore, but at the same time I knew, despite her naivete, what was really happening to her based on the author's choice of words.
And the storyline... my goodness, the story itself... It blew my mind. Immortality is usually viewed as a coveted gift. Everyone seems to want to live forever, but after reading The Taker, I promise, you'll think twice. And the concept of love ~ this book doesn't have the hearts and flowers kind of love. Every relationship Lanore experiences is twisted and on the verge of devastating. I felt sorry for her, but in a way, it was kind of refreshing. Not everyone is meant for happily ever after; some people have lifetimes of bad luck.
However, there are two more books in this trilogy, so maybe Lanore will finally fill that void she's had since the day she met Jonathan. I haven't decided if she deserves it, but I think three lifetimes of wanting are more than enough.
This isn't a happy, light read (although it does have it's moments) ~ if you're looking for a complex story with a depth that is guaranteed to get your mind, heart, and soul going, read The Taker.
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