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Book Review: The Taking by Kimberly Derting

Kimberly Derting’s new series, The Taking, is a YA sci-fi romp that will leave you wondering…what’s really out there?

Book Review: The Taking by Kimberly Derting

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the taking kimberly derting

Title & Author: The Taking by Kimberly Derting

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy – Dystopia

Release Date: April 29, 2014

Series: The Taking #1

Publisher: HarperTeen

How I Got the Book: ARC via Edelweiss


“A flash of white light . . . and then . . . nothing.

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?”

Living Among Us

The Taking is the second Kimberly Derting novel I’ve read. The first being The Pledge, which I enjoyed overall but never seemed to summon enough energy to continue the series.

What’s interesting about The Taking is that from the book summary, you can pretty much tell where the story is going a while before new information is provided. Normally, I would say that’s a poorly written description when so much information is revealed early on (I seriously HATE that!), but in this case it served to add suspense and anticipation.

When you have an idea of what’s going on – especially in this case where Kyra is slowly piecing together what happened to her – every moment is an added “how will she react to this?!” scenario. It had me wired and tensed to see how Kyra would react as each new blow lands (how her life had changed since she disappeared).

The first half of the novel was very fast-paced. Kyra is learning to adjust, coping with her new reality and making friends with her boyfriend’s younger (now older) brother Tyler.

Then the second half of the book hits. It’s just as fast-paced, and yet…I found my mind wandering. This could have absolutely just been me (I mean, there’s tons going on, seriously). For some reason, I felt disconnected from what was happening to Kyra. Maybe because it was all too much, too soon? Jury’s out on that one.

Is the Longevity There?

I have a big problem when it comes to books and movies that have a big secret: half the time, what you imagine the secret to be is bigger and more exciting then reality. So…my personal fear with The Taking series is that the answers Kyra and her friends and family are looking for won’t be as epic as I’m hoping. It’s like when the monster is revealed and you can see the puppet strings.

Also, I’m wondering how many books will be in the series. The Taking is definitely “book 1” with I’d guess at least two more books. How will the story extrapolate? Is there enough plot to stretch for two more novels?


A few things kept this story from being a real home run for me. However, The Taking is definitely an exciting read – there’s enough suspense and romance to go around – and I’d say that if you love sci-fi alien-ish action, then go for it.

About Lisa Parkin

I'm a hardcore lover of young adult fiction and have been reviewing books since 2011. Other interests include Downton Abbey, heat lightning storms, Harry Potter land and (begrudingly) one orange tabby.
  • Anya E. J.

    I skimmed since I’m planning on reading this one soon and prefer to be completely unaware going in, but I’m excited about your overall thoughts, since I’m definitely a sci-fi alien fan so this will definitely be the book for me 😀

  • Lisa Schensted

    Even though this didn’t hit home with you, I still really REALLY want to read it. You’re reading all my dream books! AH!