I was so scared going into this book since some of my bloggy friends rated it less than 3 stars or just DNF'd it (I'm looking at you Eileen). On the other hand it sounded SO good and there were still a number of good reviews! And...me? I'm in the latter section!
I absolutely loved Taken! It was...well. I don't know how to explain it really! This book flew by and when I realized I was more than halfway through, I couldn't believe it! I thought I was maybe a quarter in at most...I have absolutely no idea how she did it, but Erin Bowman wrote a book that made me desperately dread the ending that was coming all to quickly.
My absolute favorite part of the book though, was definitely the first half of the book before *minor spoiler* Gray climbs over the wall. It was fascinating seeing how this society worked out--which, it turns out, was pretty surprising...(whatever am I saying?). What I do want to warn you about is that there's more to the story than what the synopsis above hints at. That's only half the story! The rest really does sound like your typical dystopian (lies fed by the government, rebellion, deaths...whoops! did I just spoil that? Nah...but now you know what to look out for!), but it was still different in a way I can't really...get. It was an aspect that I enjoyed, but it's actually really hard to pinpoint why!
Romance...hmmm, I honestly felt it could do a little better without the, you know, love triangle, but it honestly isn't that big an issue since the "other" seems to be there just as revenge and we don't really go in depth with it, but it could also be simply annoying since there's absolutely no development whatsoever. One of the girls doesn't seem interested, then all of a sudden loves Gray, then the second seems to be just...there.
My only other complaint for this was the worldbuilding--the biggest question, for me, was how did the Heists work? And how did Gray not realized something was up when he found out that all the Hesited boys....well. I can't spoil that.
This book was a fast paced book that, while I wouldn't call it "Action packed", had enough action to keep readers satisfied and reading! I could not put this down and read it in 2 sittings (i.e. 1 sitting with a half hour break to eat.), flipping page after page of amazing writing! While it was actually a bit predictable in some cases (I could guess at a few!) I could still find myself surprised by a sudden turn of events!
While I wouldn't really recommend this for people already getting tired of YA dystopia, I will say that it's definitely a great book if you're in a reading slump or if you're searching for another amazing dystopian!