I was sent this book to review by New Books Magazine and I didn't know anything about it when I received it through the post. The front cover said that it was 'An Immortal Love Story' which I wrongly assumed to mean that there would be vampires or suchlike featuring heavily. However, Alma Katsu's debut novel, The Taker, turns out to be a different beast altogether.
It follows the story of Lanore, a two hundred year old immortal who is helped by Dr Luke Findley when she finds herself on the run from the police. Luke is transfixed by her and finds himself wanting to help her regardless of the consequences. As they make their way to Canada, Lanny tells Luke her shocking story. I wasn't overly convinced by Lanny and Luke's burgeoning relationship as the story was most definitely focussed on Lanny's past and her trying to exorcise her demons.
I found this historical novel to be an enjoyable read and a definite page-turner, although it does feel a bit long and drawn-out in places. I don’t think it would be a book I would revisit. I will probably seek out Katsu’s next novel just out of interest, as I found her writing style easy to get into and very readable. The characters are well drawn and Adair’s story intrigued me, however I wasn’t quite prepared for some of the brutality and violence within the book. It is not for the faint-hearted.
I would recommend it more as a personal than a group read however as I don’t believe there are that many points to bring up in a group discussion as the author doesn’t leave much to question. Overall a different and interesting read by a debut novelist.
Star Rating: *** (3/5 stars)