BY: Alma Katsu
PUBLISHED BY: Gallery
PUBLISHED IN: 2011
After midnight, Dr. Luke Findley of St. Andrew, Maine gets an unusual patient, murder suspect Lanore Mellvare. A young man’s body had been found in the nearby woods along with “Lanny”. As Luke attends to this young woman, who the police said looks “pale”, which is probably due to the cold Maine temperatures, Lanny begins to tell the doctor an unbelievable tale. The man’s body that is now in the morgue is none other than the body of Jonathan St. Andrew, which cannot be true as no St. Andrew has been alive for a few hundred years.
Pleading for Luke to help her escape, Lanny continues her story which starts in 1811 and talks about her admiration for the town founder’s son, Jonathan, despite her father’s and brother’s hatred for the St. Andrew family. You see St. Andrews were quite wealthy, while everyone else struggled to get by. Secretly, and despite being a few years younger, Lanny develops a friendship with Jonathan that later turns into a fling, one that results in her pregnancy. Lanny tries to hide her situation from her family. Jonathan becomes engaged to another very young girl, an arrangement made by his father. With nowhere else to turn, Lanny tells her parents of her pregnancy. Her father is furious and embarrassed. The decision is made that Lanny will be sent to Boston to live at a nunnery, in which the baby will be given up for adoption.
Lanny's life completely changes as she arrives in Boston. She is instantly swept into a wealth man’s, Adair, odd group, where in time she becomes Immortal. She now has riches beyond her wildest dreams, but the only thing she can think about is her beloved Jonathan.
The Taker is a stunningly haunted tale that will stay in your thoughts long after you have read the last word. From the first paragraph, I was swept into this creative world of Lanore “Lanny” Melvare. This is not a sweet love story; this is a very dark and twisted love story. Despite what you might think, Lanny is not a vampire, she is just an immortal, which was forced upon her. The good Doctor Luke Findley is a lost soul and caught up into the dangerous world that Lanny has created for herself. The Taker is a blend of the Interview with a Vampire, and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. The narrative is wonderfully written as is the plot. The paperback edition that I have reviewed includes a sneak peak of the upcoming sequel, The Reckoning. The Taker is a beautiful read and I recommend it to all readers.
*I would like to thank Gallery Books for sending me a copy to review.
About the Author:
Alma Katsu was born in Alaska and raised near Condord, Massachusetts. She holds a B.A. from Brandeis University and an M.A. from the Johns Hopkins writing program. The Taker, her debut novel, is the first in a trilogy; The Reckoning, the second in the series, is forthcoming in hardcover. She lives with her husband in Virginia. Visit her online at www.almakatsu.com.