Friday, September 2, 2011

Review of "The Taker" by Alma Katsu

The Taker
Author: Alma Katsu
Publisher: Gallery Books
Release Date: September 2011
Hardcover, 448 pages
ISBN: 9781439197059

True love can last an eternity . . . but immortality comes at a price. . . .

On the midnight shift at a hospital in rural Maine, Dr. Luke Findley is expecting another quiet evening of frostbite and the occasional domestic dispute. But the minute Lanore McIlvrae—Lanny—walks into his ER, she changes his life forever. A mysterious woman with a past and plenty of dark secrets, Lanny is unlike anyone Luke has ever met. He is inexplicably drawn to her . . . despite the fact that she is a murder suspect with a police escort. And as she begins to tell her story, a story of enduring love and consummate betrayal that transcends time and mortality, Luke finds himself utterly captivated.

Her impassioned account begins at the turn of the nineteenth century in the same small town of St. Andrew, Maine, back when it was a Puritan settlement. Consumed as a child by her love for the son of the town’s founder, Lanny will do anything to be with him forever. But the price she pays is steep—an immortal bond that chains her to a terrible fate for all eternity. And now, two centuries later, the key to her healing and her salvation lies with Dr. Luke Findley.

Part historical novel, part supernatural page-turner, The Taker is an unforgettable tale about the power of unrequited love not only to elevate and sustain, but also to blind and ultimately destroy, and how each of us is responsible for finding our own path to redemption.

My Thoughts:

Don't let the beautiful and serene looking cover full you. This mesmerizingly dark tale will grab you and haunt you long after you finish the book. Full of torment and torture of both mind and body, this story is full of horrific scenes - ones you really don't want to read, but can't pull your eyes away.

"The Taker" tells about a love so overpowering, so consuming, that the main character will do anything and risk anything to have what she wants. The risk is much greater than she'd ever realize, and it takes the reader on a journey to discover what love really is.

Although the ending was predictable, the road to get there was not! The paths this book followed were well beyond what I could have imagined. This book is one that I had to keep telling my husband about when I was reading it, so I imagine it would definitely be a book for book clubs/groups.

I must warn you - this is not for the squeamish or ones that are easily offended. Although not overly descriptive, there is enough to really put images in one's head. This book contains offensive language, sexual situations, rape, sodomy, abuse, child abuse, torture, and mental abuse. This is not one book I would hand my 18yo daughter.

About the Author:

Alma Katsu has a BA in Writing from Brandeis University (where she studied under John Irving) and an MA from the Johns Hopkins Writing Program. She lives with her husband in Virginia.

If you would like to find out more about Alma or her books, you can visit her online at:

This book was provided by Gallery Books for me to honestly review.


  1. Wow. I am officially intrigued. I haven't heard of this yet, but I am definitely now looking forward to reading it myself.

  2. Hi! Thank you for the review and I'm glad you enjoyed reading The Taker. I appreciate that you weighed in on the age appropriateness, as it is strong in places and there seems to be quite a range of reactions. When teenagers have expressed interest in the book at signings, I've recommended that a parent read it first--but it's surprising how deceptively young some women look! I was just at Decatur Book Fest talking to a blogger I thought was no older than 16 and it turned out she was married!



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