The Taken
Celestial Blues, Book #1
By Vicki Pettersson
ISBN# 9780062064646
Author’s Website:

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi

Griffin Shaw is a Centurion Angel, which means he helps shepherd the recently deceased, primarily those that suffered traumatic deaths, find their way to the afterlife, called the Everlast.  Grif wasn’t always an angel though; he was once a human and a P.I.  He had a beautiful wife, Evie, and they were both murdered fifty years ago.  Grif was made into an angel and he hasn’t seen his beloved wife since.

Grif is assigned a take (a soul to bring to the Everlast), Nicole Rockwell, who is distraught by being dead.  It appears that she is a prostitute that was killed by a john and she is horrified to realize that she will have to spend eternity in her current state of undress.  Grif feels for her and breaks the rules by reanimating her body long enough for her to change her clothes.  But what she does when he’s not looking changes fate and now her best friend, Kit, is going to die as a result.  And, the Pure Angels have assigned Kit as Grif’s next take.  Since her death will be a direct result of him breaking the rules, his wings have been taken, he has been put back into mortal flesh, and he must watch Kit’s brutal death and bring her home to the Everlast.

But when the time comes, Grif can’t sit back and watch Kit be raped and murdered.  He intervenes and sends her attackers running away in fear.  But it’s not over, Kit is still fated to die and so Grif decides to stick by her side to make sure he can keep defying destiny.  And, the more time Grif is on the surface, the more of his memories that had previously been erased, come crashing back.  So Grif and Kit make a deal to help one another; he will help Kit find Nicole’s murderer if she helps him find out who killed Evie.  What Kit and Grif don’t expect is to find themselves overwhelmed with feelings for one another.  And, as they get closer to the answers they seek they find themselves in the middle of uncovering a twisted prostitution ring and every question that gets answered brings them one step closer to their own deaths.

Pattersson’s writing style drew me in right away.  I found myself instantly liking Grif and being interested in learning more about the Centurions and Grif’s interactions with the deceased.  I related well to both Grif and Kit and knew that they would be a couple I could completely get behind.

Also, Kat was part of the rockabilly subculture, dressing and decorating and living in an era from the past, in her case the 50s.  I personally had never heard of rockabillies and found the concept to be quite interesting.  And, I did have to google her car just to see what they were talking about!

But somewhere around the halfway point in the book, I hit a brick wall of  boredom.  Going through all the motions of Kit’s everyday life was too much for me to stay interested in; getting her hair done here, having a manicure there, then meeting her friends and the conversations that Grif was having with them was a total snooze.  Although I did like Grif and Paul meeting, for the first time!  I just think a lot of this mundane stuff wasn’t really necessary to the story and really bogged it down.  It could have easily been cut out and I feel the book would have flowed better.

But not to worry, fellow readers, the story does pick back up and gets pretty interesting especially after the villain of the story and his men get their hands on Kit!  Will Grif get to her in time to save himself from having to collect her soul?  Will all of his efforts to keep her alive be in vain?  I guess you will just have to read the book yourself to find out!!

Overall, I felt this book was good, but I think I could have given it a higher rating if I didn’t have to force myself to keep reading during the boring part.  But it all definitely picked up at the end of the book to make up for it and I hope that the next book will continue with that momentum and that the series will get even better!