Title: The Taker
Author: Alama Katsu
Format: Paperback (ARC Supplied by Publisher)
Length: 436 pages
Publisher: Gallery Books
Age Range: Adult
Rating: 5 stars
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.
"The Taker" is an epic tale of love, betrayal, alchemy and obsession. Spanning a time period that ranges from 1349 A.D. to the present and touching down in lands that span the globe.
As the novel opens, the reader is introduced to Luke Findley, a doctor working at a small hospital in Aroostook County, Maine. His shift appears to be 'business as usual' until a beautiful young woman is brought in to the ER in handcuffs, covered in blood, and with a story to tell that will change his life forever.
Lanore McIlvrae (Lanny) is a woman of secrets. Some secrets are hers; while she serves only as guardian to others. Her biggest secret...she is immortal. Her second biggest secret...she just killed the love of her life.
This novel is one that defies convention in that, it does not readily present itself as being one thing or another. It is part romance, part paranormal fantasy, and part historical fiction. It is the sum of these parts that comes together to form a read that readers will not be able to put down.
Ms. Katsu does an exemplary job in creating relatable characters. Each possessing a seemingly bottomless depth of emotional sincerity that literally begs to be explored by her audience. This point is most effectively actualized by Lanny. She is a woman who "knows what side of the bread her toast is buttered on" sexually, emotionally, and otherwise; and she is written in such a way that even though the journey is exquisitely heart-wrenching at times, the reader is right there for every step.
This novel is written in a very "in your face" style. The threads of complexity start weaving themselves around you from the beginning and continue for the majority of the work; so that by the time that you reach the end, the lull is a welcome respite. Transitions between present-day happenings and past events are seamless and well placed. The only negative aspect to this story is that this chapter of it ends, forcing one to wait for the next.
Though the majority of the books that I review are appropriate reading for teens and or children; I must caution my readers that this book is not. Subjects depicted in this work include but are not limited to: rape, bondage, abduction, and murder. Please be advised that though these scenes are very tastefully written, they may still be too graphic for a younger reader.