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The Taken: Celestial Blues by Vicki…
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The Taken: Celestial Blues (edition 2012)

by Vicki Pettersson (Author)

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1371487,614 (3.53)2
Member:wyvernfriend
Title:The Taken: Celestial Blues
Authors:Vicki Pettersson (Author)
Info:Harper Voyager (2012), Kindle Edition, 432 pages
Collections:Library Loans, Read but unowned
Rating:***1/2
Tags:fiction, library, read, december, 2012, mm, angels, death, rockabilly, murder, mystery, reporter

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The Taken by Vicki Pettersson

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Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
I liked the idea the author presents in the book about angels. What I didn't care for was all the tell and not show on the rockabilly side of the heroine's life. And as much as she talked about the lifestyle other than the dress up I wasn't sure what drove her to aggressively live in that time frame to the point of tracking down old brands of cigarettes to smoke. The villain is really evil and he does almost everything except twirl his mustache since he is so secure that he will never be caught. I'll read the next one since I liked how the book ended with the angel side but the heroine side was a bit weak. ( )
  Glennis.LeBlanc | Jul 8, 2014 |
Great Book can't wait for the next one. ( )
  Coyoteofthenine | Mar 14, 2014 |
This book has a much bigger streak of romance in it than the Zodiac books did. It also has no superheroes, just to warn you. What it does have is an angel bad-boy, a modern-day rockabilly heroine, and a serious murder-mystery (or rather: two murder-mysteries) to solve.

If you’re expecting Pettersson’s writing to get lighter with this new series, then you are seriously mistaken. This author has a (much deserved) reputation for being absolutely vicious to her characters, and while this opening doesn’t quite have the brutal gut-punch that The Scent of Shadows did, it still isn’t a quaint walk in the park. In fact, this book should probably carry a trigger warning for rape/sexual assault.

The main relationship is a little abrupt, but the mystery and danger is gritty and real. You can’t really compare Kit with Joanna (the protagonist from Zodiac), because they’re so totally different, but I admit to not falling in love with Kit in the same way. Joanna was dark, tough, and strong. Kit is strong, too, but also sunshine-y cheerful, stubborn, and… Well. I don’t know if she’s too stupid to live, but she doesn’t seem to be the smartest person in the world. For a journalist, this proves a weakness that can (and does) put her into danger.

On second thought, it’s not that Kit’s stupid. She seems quite intelligent, actually. It’s just that she’s way too trusting. She married a jerk that didn’t appreciate her. Then she lets her best friend walk into the seedy hotel room where she’s murdered. As if that weren’t enough, she doesn’t run screaming when she finds Griff, claiming to be an angel, in her house.

Yep, I would be totally credulous if I found a strange man in my bedroom at night who then advised me he was a supernatural being after a short conversation. Sure, he saved her life — but that would only get you so far with me. (I’d probably just call the cops rather than getting out the frying pan and beating him to within an inch of his life, for instance.)

If you don’t take this too seriously, you should do just fine. There’s an odd contrast between the campy-ness of Kit’s rockabilly lifestyle and her interactions with Griff against the deadly serious conspiracy of the ending. I find that contrast intriguing rather than off-putting, but some readers may not be so forgiving.

All in all, this story is like that kind of chocolate you can get with the hot pepper in it. (Here’s an example.) It’s a sweet romance tale, with the bite of murder and conspiracy. It’s a gritty noir murder-mystery with some great witty dialogue. This story is trying to be a lot of different things, and while it doesn’t quite succeed in being everything for everyone, it’s a compelling start to a story that I plan on being in line for through the end. ( )
  kiaras | Oct 22, 2013 |
The number one question in Griffin Shaw's life is who killed both him and his wife Evie fifty years ago. Though he has found new love with rockabilly babe Kit, Evie continues to haunt his dreams. It's been four months since he saved Kits life and returned to the mudflat (read: earth) but he is no closer to solving this extremely cold case.

Life keeps moving and the pures keep sending him souls to guide into the Everlast. He may be part human now, but his duties as a centurion continue. It is these duties that force him to do a take for Jeap Yang - a drug addict. What he does not know is that this take will be different because not only will Kit involved, she will be introduced to a fallen. This alone would be bad enough, but it will lead them on a trail to investigate a horrible new drug flooding the streets and confront both the Russian and Cuban mafia. Will Griffin and Kit manage to survive unscathed and can their fragile love survive all the forces which seemed aligned against them?

In The Taken, Pettersson included a strong message against violence aimed at women but The Lost, is absent such a message. Instead it seemed to fixate on fighting the subjugation of sexist patriarchal beliefs by showing women in charge of organized crime. These women were strong but incredibly cold. In Kit she did decide to show a softer kind of strength however but she was one person against two very domineering and angry women. The difference between Kit and the two antagonists is that Kit is never really portrayed as having to battle sexism. It seems to imply a sort of revenge fantasy rather than women being in control because they are powerful, organized and capable.

There was certainly more racial inclusion in The Taken but not only inclusion is good inclusion. Once again, Lil and Fleur made an appearance but their sole purpose was to educate Kit about Latino culture.

"Shit, girl, he probably ain't Mexicano." Screwing up her beautifully painted mouth, Lil drew back to regard Kit with disdain. "You think us Latinas all look alike."

"No I don't," Kit said defensively, but the two women gave her matching stares, arms folded across their chests, perfectly plucked eyebrows raised in identical doubt. "You two, for example, look better than anyone I've ever seen in my entire life." (pg 89)

This was a salient point for both Lil and Fleur to make. Despite being a good friend to both women, Kit remains clueless about Latino culture.

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  FangsfortheFantasy | Sep 20, 2013 |
Awesome start to a new series by one of my favorite authors. What is not to love about a soul collector who was once a PI in the early sixties suddenly forced back into mortal form for a seemingly small transgression? He meets a newspaper owner/journalist who is very much into the Rock-a-billy scene in Las Vegas--which means she dresses like she is from the 40-60's much like a Veronica Lake with red-hair. ( )
  SLHobbs | Sep 15, 2013 |
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0062064649, Paperback)

Amazon Exclusive: Kim Harrison Reviews The Taken

Kim Harrison is the author of The Hollows series.

Kit is her own woman, her confidence and belief in justice driving her to dig where she doesn't belong. Getting her best friend murdered while investigating Las Vegas's men of power swiftly unearths a city-wide conspiracy that preys on the vulnerable and innocent, one propagated by an ugly circle of zealous adherence to traditions and enforced by selective blindness and lethal corrections.

Drawn into bringing the horrific abuse to light, Kit puts her own life into the equation. But she's supposed to be dead already, according to Grif, a jaded angel whose job it was to get Kit's friend to the Everlast. Grif's own scars made by failing to protect his wife from a savage murder he was blamed for keep him tied to his Everlast job, unable to move on, unable to look back.

Shaken by Kit's dual strong and fragile nature, Grif begins breaking rules, setting up larger and larger waves through the Everlast as he finds every moment he spends with Kit brings him closer to the truth he has been avoiding the past seventy years--and he slowly realizes that even an angel can learn to love again.

Boldly exploring topics skirting today's headlines, Pettersson deftly brings together a cast of unique yet recognizable characters within her hometown of Las Vegas. Fast paced and having logical surprises, The Taken is an exceptional look into a vision of what happens when the hereafter merges with the here-and-now, the mechanics of the world building as unique and satisfying as the tale itself as the genres of mystery, crime scene drama, and more than enough romance to keep the heart pumping blend seamlessly into an enthralling read that kept me glued to the pages until the final, satisfying end. I can't wait for the sequel. --Kim Harrison

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:40:46 -0400)

"Griffin Shaw used to be a PI, but that was back when gumshoes hoofed the streets-- and he was still alive. Fifty years later, he's an angel, but that doesn't make him a saint. One small mistake has altered fate, and now he's been dumped back onto the mortal mudflat to collect another soul: Katherine "Kit" Craig, a journalist whose latest investigation is about to get her clipped. Bucking heavenly orders, Grif refuses to let the sable-haired siren come to harm. Besides, protecting her offers a chance to solve the mystery of his own unsolved murder-- and dole out some overdue payback for the death of his beloved wife, Evie. Joining forces, Kit and Grif's search for answers leads beyond the blinding lights of the Strip into the dark heart of an evil conspiracy. But a ruthless killer determined to destroy them isn't Grif's biggest threat. His growing attraction to Kit could cost them both their lives, along with the answer to the haunting question of his long afterlife: Who killed Griffin Shaw?"-- Provided by publisher.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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