Saturday, 4 April 2015

Review: The Taking by Kimberly Derting

What the book is about...

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?

My initial expectations...

I've loved Kimberly Derting ever since I picked up The Pledge a few years back. However, while I love Derting and her writing style, I'm not the biggest fan of anything extraterrestrial-related. Personally, I prefer to enjoy aliens on the silver screen exclusively. I'm a big X-Files fan, but that's pretty much it.

What I liked about this book...

My favourite scenes were always the ones where Kyra met up with one of the people she had been close with before she was taken. They were awkward, uncomfortable and emotional. With each one I grew more and more sympathetic for Kyra and started to feel what she felt.
I also really liked seeing how much the characters had changed over the years. I don't know exactly why, it was just enjoyable.
Though it slowed down a bit in the middle, the character and plot development was well paced. It was a relief not having the author shove the protagonist's superhuman abilities or the romance in my face before I was able to absorb everything else. It was suspenseful, but not to the point where I felt rushed. 

What I didn't like about this book...

The romance, while not too fast or too ooey gooey, just didn't appeal to me. Near the end I was a bit more into than I was before, but not to the point where I actually cared. In fact, I almost felt like it was just a filler to let the author space key plot points out.

My overall views...

Surprisingly, I enjoyed this book. Not necessarily for the characters or the romance, but for the plot and the theme, the one thing I had been worried about liking. Throughout, Derting kept me wanting more and more and more until the point where I was so I love with this book I couldn't stop thinking about it, even once I'd moved on to other books. 

I give this book 4/5 stars on Goodreads!

Would I recommend it to anyone? Yes! Too anyone who loves aliens and suspense.

Would I read it again? Nah. But I'm definitely excited for the sequel!

Favourite quotes...

“Love required sacrifice and making hard choices and doing things that were bigger than just you. It wasn't something you asked for, or could control or change. It was something you accepted. Love was a force of nature.”

What did you guys think? Did you like or dislike the romance? Why or why not? Please feel free to recommend to me any other alien or suspense YA novels you think I or others might like?

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