GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ Sheep Review: The Taken by Vicki Pettersson + Give Away | I Smell Sheep

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Sheep Review: The Taken by Vicki Pettersson + Give Away

The Taken (Celestial Blues #1) by Vicki Pettersson

He’s a fallen angel. She’s a rockabilly reporter. Together they must solve a deadly string of murders plaguing the mortal and the immortal worlds.

Griffin Shaw used to be a PI, but that was over fifty years ago when gumshoes hoofed the streets . . . and he was still alive. Now he’s a Centurion, an angel who assists other murdered souls through their journey to the afterlife. But while Shaw might be an angel … he’s no saint. Haunted by the mysterious events surrounding his own death, he seizes a chance to wreak some vengeance when he witnesses a deadly attack on journalist Katherine “Kit” Craig.

Joining forces, the unlikely avengers take to the streets, hunting a killer whose trail of bodies stretches across Las Vegas and into an immortal netherworld. It is a dangerous trek that lead them into the darkest corners of Sin City and into the heart of an evil conspiracy extending beyond the lights of the Strip that could destory them both.

But destruction isn’t the only threat Griffin faces. The closer he gets to Kit, the more he finds himself bewitched by her mortal charms. Can he resist falling under her spell? And does he want to?

If you are a fan of Vicki’s “OMG fabulous” dark Urban Fantasy series Signs of the Zodiac, like I am, and have been looking forward her new Celestial Blues series you need to stop right here for a second…(1 Mississippi)…The Taken is not like her previous books. I made the mistake of diving into it with preconceived ideas and that made it hard for me to be objective. I finished The Taken well over a week ago and haven’t written this review till now because I needed to step back and forget about what I thought it should have been. This is not an urban fantasy; it crosses many genre lines but I think dark paranormal mystery/thriller  with romance pretty much covers it. <G>
I really like Vicki’s spin on the angel mythos; when someone dies they go into the Everlast, this would be like heaven. Some people get to go straight there and some are sent to a dark forest inhabited by the Third, the portion of the angelic host that followed Lucifer against God. The forest of the Third is briefly touched on, but hopefully will be explored more deeply in future books. Pures were the first angels created by God and they serve him but don’t have much to do with human souls. Those who die violently have to be put in incubation where they get past the memory and regret of their death then enter the Everlast. Some souls aren’t able to let go of their past and they become Centurions, a low form of angel, who have to usher other violently killed souls in hopes that by helping others they will alleviate their own mental anguish and move into the Everlast. Griffin Shaw was a private investigator when he and his wife were brutally murdered 50 years ago. Incubation wasn’t able to erase his need to know who killed them and why so he became a Centurion.
The Taken has a few issues you find with most debut series, for example the characters feel a little stiff as if the author hasn’t quite gotten comfortable with them yet. The beginning is slow and I found easy to set it down. I understand there was a need to do some character development and world building, and it is done well, but there just wasn’t a lot of action, instead we meet many characters as multiple storylines are slowly woven together. My favorite character is Anne (Anas) a Pure with an attitude problem that finds her fate connected to Grif. Through her experiences we learn information about angels and their purpose in the Everlast. The second half of the book is when the sh** hits the fan story-wise and it ends with a bang. I love Griffin Shaw, Pettersson did a great job of portraying what a man from the 50’s would act and think like. He is a man of few words, yet capable of loving passionately. I liked his journey of letting go of his past and grabbing hold of his future. Kit Craig was likable, but I didn’t connect to her like I did with the other characters and I honestly don’t know why. The rockabilly aspect was interesting, but it seemed to overshadow the character. She also had to learn to let go of her past and trust love again. The irony of Kit and Grif’s relationship was very clever as well as the contrast of Kit’s rockabilly lifestyle and the harshness of the murder investigation that turns in to something much worse.

The villains in this book aren’t the supernatural kind, but they are just as evil as any I have read, almost disturbingly so. The story deals with rape, murder and the selling of young girls as sex slaves.
This is a good start to a new series and I don’t think The Taken should be used to judge how the rest of the series will develop. There are some wonderful possibilities that can be explored in the world Pettersson has created and I look forward to reading about them

3.5 Sheep
SharonS (edited by BAK)

Find Vicki Pettersson online

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Harper Collins Publisher is giving away a print copy to one winner (US ONLY)
To enter: 
1. leave contact info in comments
2. Which decade do you think has the coolest fashions?
*double entry for followers
contest ends June 21 at midnight


  1. Thank you for the review. I am one who did not like her Signs of the Zodiac series. I tried to read a short story in an anthology once. Jsut wasn't for me. This one sounds good, I read another review and interview with her the other day.

    Thank you for the contest. My contact info is The coolest fashions have to be from the 30's. I LOVE the beautiful clothes Mirna Loy wore in The Thin Man movies.

    1. I don't think I would judge the Zodiac series on a short story...maybe one day you can read the first few chapters of book one. It sucked me in quickly. Of course I LOVE first person POV dark UF and this is definitely one of those :) thanks for stopping by and commenting. The 30's were cool.

    2. Forgot to add that I follow the blog.

      Well, I didn't even finish the short story. Just couldn't get into it. Maybe one of these days I will give a whole book a try. I do like Dark UF, like Rob Thurman and Kittredge's Black London series.

  2. Great review, and thanks for the warning about the book being much different from the Zodiac series. I liked the Zodiac series, and I believe I would enjoy this one too. I love Rockabilly and I love angels, fallen or not :) As to your question, decade with the coolest fashions, maybe the 7's? The whole hippie-chick thing is a fun look, but I am happy that modern fashions are much more tame, even if the 80's are miraculously coming back (ugh).
    I am a follower, Book Savvy Babe
    booksavvybabe at gmail dot com

    1. The 70's?! lol, all I think about are the bell bottoms. I was a teen in the 80's and dressed the part as long as the hair styles don't make a come back I'll be okay. There is an awesome company that makes clothing based on different time periods. So cool I just bought a few things :)

  3. I think the 1950s had cool fashion.

    I follow the blog.


  4. Thanks for the review. Hmm, I guess the 20s had a really nice elegant flair in their fashion.

  5. Thanks for a fun review! I just got the signs of the zodiac and I can't wait to start it!

    I think that the 40's/50's had the coolest clothes. Everyone always looked so nice!

    gfc: erin

  6. Great review! I'm ashamed to admit that I've had The Scent of Shadows on my shelf untouched for quite awhile (I'll read it some point this summer). The Taken sounds awesome!

    I think the 1920s had the coolest fashion (flappers!).


  7. I love old school P.I. with wings, and Lois Lane as his partner. I'd love to win a copy of this book for my home library.


  8. I like the 40s and the 50s. Everyone dressed beautifully no matter how much money they had.

    1. whoops forgot my email address:


  9. I like clothes from the 70's..


  10. I love the Zodiac Series....I love corsets and Victorian era dress but I doubt that will ever come back so I will say 50's I love that too!

  11. I like the Victorian era but no corset please.
    debby236 at gmail dot com

  12. Well definitely not the most comfortable, but aesthetically I'll go with Europe in the 1510's. Dorky, right?
    I'm a gfc follower.


    1. We love dorks! Thanks for stopping by :) Dork Power!

  13. I like some of the fashions from the 20's. Great giveaway as always! Thanks:)

  14. I loved her Signs Of The Zodiac Series and this one sounds intriguing also. So Please count me in.
    GFC Follower Anna Dase
    Email berrylicious_cutie(at)hotmail(.)com

  15. I thought I posted already but my internet is messing up-- grrrr...

    I love the 50's fashion, but I still have to go with the 20's. Those flappers have some cool fashion going on:)

    Vickie's writing is amazing, and I can't wait to read The Taken!

    I'm a follower by email and facebook.

  16. I think the 1920's had really cool fashion, especially the ladies hair styles. I can't wait to start this new series, it sounds fantastic.

    Barbed1951 at aol dot com
    GFC: Barbara E.

  17. Thanks for the review. I did not really enjoy the other series, I read only the first 3 books, then I gave up. But I do like the premise of this new series, and especially that bookcover. (Not entering, Dutch reader )

  18. the 50's!
    GFC Follower - Froggy


  19. Thanks for the giveaway. It sounds like a really good book. I'm not too sure what decade it is, but I love the victorian style. I would love to have dresses like they did then.
    GFC: Charissa Jackson

  20. I've never actually read anything by this author, but I've had my eye on this ook for a while -- I'm a BIG fan of the 50's fashions too ;)

    GFC The Romanceaholic

    Romanceaholic at gmail dot com :)

  21. Cool Giveaway I Am A Big Fan Of The Time Where The Wore Ball Gowns And Fancy Dresses I Love That Time Period. Gfc April Alvey

    April Alvey

  22. The 20s with the flapper outfits. they are just fun.

    bacchus76 at myself dot com

  23. I like some of the fashions from the 20's. Great giveaway

    GFC neljo mullins
    acouponaddict at charter dot net

  24. I follow via GFC- ape2016. I like the fashions of the 1940's.


  25. I love the fashions of the English 1800s. Elegant dresses, big crazy hats, and sparkly or satin slippers and tight britches for the men. Lol. I am a follower as well. :).

  26. Contest is closed and the winner is Lori B!!! Congrats and I will be emailing you :) thanks to everyone who commented and don't forget to check out all our other give aways