“On the midnight shift at a hospital in rural Maine, Dr. Luke Findley is expecting another quiet evening of frostbite and the occasional domestic dispute. But the minute Labore McIlvrae-Lanny-walks into his ER, she changes his life forever. A mysterious woman with a past and plenty of dark secrets, Lanny is unlike anyone Luke has ever met. He is inexplicably drawn to her despite the fact that she is a murder suspect with a police escort. And, as she begins to tell her story, a story of enduring love, and consummate betrayal that transcends time and mortality, Luke finds himself utterly captivated.
Her impassioned account begins at the turn of the nineteenth century in the same small town of St. Andrew, Maine, back when it was a Puritan settlement. Consumed as a child by her love for the son of the town’s founder, Lanny will do anything to be with him forever. But the price she pays is steep-an immortal bond that chains her to a terrible fate for all eternity, and now, two centuries later, the key to her healing and salvation lies with Dr. Luke Findley.”
The Taker is an intriguing mix of part supernatural, part historical fiction, part psychological horror, and part tragic love story. In my opinion this novel’s greatest strength is it’s characters. Lanny is so tragically and obsessively in love with Jonathan that she just cannot accept that they are not fated to be together. Jonathan, cares deeply for Lanny but no matter how part of him wishes he could return her feelings, it is just not within him to do so. It is both of their weaknesses that put them on a collision course with the cruel, immortal Adair, who doesn’t care for anything besides his own pleasure and self preservation. His depravity as well as that of his small group of followers is horrifying as well as breathtaking. Toward the end there are some clever twists that I did not see coming and I think my only complaint would be that the story ended rather abruptly. I hope the talented Alma Katsu will be writing a sequel because there were definitely some loose threads left undone.
Kim is the Assistant Head of Children’s Services
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