The Taker (Taker Trilogy #1)

The Taker (Taker Trilogy #1)

by Alma Katsu


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The Taker (Taker Trilogy #1) by Alma Katsu

A “mesmerizing” (Booklist, starred review) and haunting love story that spans 200 years, The Taker blends immortality, alchemy, sensuality, and betrayal into an unforgettable tale.

True love can last an eternity . . . but immortality comes at a price..

On the midnight shift at a hospital in rural St. Andrew, Maine, Dr. Luke Findley is expecting a quiet evening. Until a mysterious woman arrives in his ER, escorted by police—Lanore McIlvrae is a murder suspect—and Luke is inexplicably drawn to her. As Lanny tells him her story, an impassioned account of love and betrayal that transcends time and mortality, she changes his life forever. . . . At the turn of the nineteenth century, Lanny was consumed as a child by her love for the son of St. Andrew’s founder, and she 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.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781439197066
Publisher: Gallery Books
Publication date: 03/27/2012
Series: Taker Trilogy , #1
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 464
Sales rank: 797,096
Product dimensions: 5.42(w) x 8.08(h) x 1.18(d)

About the Author

Alma Katsu was born in Alaska and raised near Concord, Massachusetts. She has a BA in writing from Brandeis University and an MA from the Johns Hopkins Writing Program. She is the author of the Taker trilogy (The Taker, The Reckoning, and The Descent) and The Hunger. She lives with her husband in Virginia. Visit her on Twitter.

Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for The Taker includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Alma Katsu. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


This hauntingly atmospheric love story opens in the northernmost corner of Maine, when a distraught young woman is brought into the emergency room, and treated by a doctor who is strangely drawn to her—even though she has just admitted to killing a man and leaving him in the frozen North woods. The woman has an enchanting story to tell—the sweeping story of a love affair from 200 years before. Full of immortality, alchemy, sensuality, and betrayal, The Taker is a tale of love across time that will not soon be forgotten.


  1. Why does Luke leave his home to follow Lanny? Is his willingness to leave his life behind a sign of strength or of weakness? What would you have done if you were in Luke’s position?
  2. Do you think it was fair of Jonathan to ask Lanore to end his suffering? Did Lanore owe it to him? Do her actions in Maine absolve her of her long life of transgressions?
  3. What separated Lanore from the other immortal members of Adair’s court? Consider Alejandro, Tilde, Dona, Uzra, and their various stories of origin.
  4. Discuss the evolution of Lanny’s character, from a coy, young girl from the backwoods of Maine to a world-traveled, immortal hedonist. Is Luke destined to be just another fling, or is there something deeper to their budding love?
  5. Do you believe that Lanny ever loved Adair? Why do you think she was so drawn to a scheming madman?
  6. How did you react to the violent tendencies of the members of Adair’s household? Consider Lanny’s first night in the mansion, the abductions of the local Bostonians, and the bizarre sexual proclivities of the immortal house-goers. Do you believe there might have been a secret society of hedonists living in Boston during this period?
  7. The traveling priest, later revealed to be a member of Adair’s flock, recognizes a spiritual unease and some inherent wildness deep within Lanore’s soul. Do you think he was right? Was Lanny, to some extent, wicked? How do you explain her actions in the chambers in Boston, or her initial involvement in Sophia’s death? Are her choices that of someone trying to take control of her life or someone losing control of herself?
  8. On her return trip to St. Andrew, Lanore encounters Magda, the town whore. Magda warns Lanore, “…don’t fall in love with your gentleman. We women make our worst decisions when we are in love.” Do you believe this to be true? Could Lanore have been saved from her complicated fate if she wasn’t so in love with Jonathan? Why do you think Lanore was drawn to Magda in the first place?
  9. Do you think Luke made the right decision in leaving St. Andrew behind for a life with Lanny in Paris? What of his obligations to his family? Do you agree with his decision regarding the fabled vial?
  10. Were you surprised by Adair’s true identity? Do you believe Lanny’s plan to trap the physic worked?
  11. After everything Lanny had told Luke about the fantastical and magical, do you think there was some greater significance to the vision of his mother momentarily rising from the dead?
  12. The story’s narrative unfolds in three different time periods, following three distinct characters. Which of the three was your favorite to read, and why? Who did you feel the most sympathy for?
  13. Why do you think the author chose to title this book, The Taker? Are there multiple “takers” in the story? If so, who are they? What does Lanny take from Adair, Jonathan, and Luke? What does she give them?
  14. Did Jonathan ever truly love Lanore? Did he have such a capacity? How would you characterize Lanny’s feelings for Jonathan? Is it love or obsession?
  15. At the heart of The Taker is a fairytale about a woman coming into her own. As Lanny eventually explains, alchemy is an effort to transform the person into something more pure, self-assured, and strong. Compare Lanny’s story to other well-known fables, like Pinocchio, Snow White, Cinderella, or any of Aesop’s valued lessons. What similarities do you see? What sort of classic temptations are placed before Lanore, and what is it that she ultimately takes away from her endless trial of self?


  1. List and discuss the things that you would see or accomplish if you were granted immortal life. Would endless time eventually wear on you, as it did Lanny and Jonathan, or is it something that would provide endless stimulation and inspiration?
  2. Visit to learn more about the author, and read of her colonial American influences, her ancestry, the origin of her name, and more about her upcoming book, The Taker.
  3. Adair sketches his immortal followers, creating stunning images of Uzra and an incomplete portrait of Jonathan. Try your hand at drawing during your next book club meeting. As a group, select an object, an image, or even someone from your book club to sketch!
  4. There is a cinematic quality to The Taker, as the narrative spans states, continents, and centuries. Discuss with your book club who you would cast for Adair, Jonathan, and Lanny in a film version of the story.


Where did you find the inspiration for The Taker? In its own way, The Taker is an alchemy of genres—mixing romance, the paranormal, colonial drama, with a touch of post-modernism. Did you draw from many sources for the book?

It wasn’t until after I’d written The Taker that I realized it combined many influences on my life. I never thought I was that big a fan of the American Colonial period, but when you grow up near Concord, Massachusetts you’re steeped in it. For instance, I think it might actually be a law that schoolchildren must watch the movie Johnny Tremaine every year until high school. I think the paranormal influence goes back to childhood, too. Maybe it was that we lived in ancient houses that creaked with every passing breeze or the fact that there were five cemeteries in my tiny hometown (two funeral homes within a block from my home!), but as a child I seemed predisposed to believe in the spooky and supernatural. And of course, that’s what children do, indulge in magical thinking as a way of coping with their inherent powerlessness.

Science, religion, and magic seem to be at odds throughout the story, with Lanny’s transformation never fully explained or understood. Was this your intention? Where do you stand on the confluence of science, magic, and faith?

That Lanny’s changed circumstances are not fully explained is intentional, although it is revealed in the third book. Hopefully, readers will be surprised and delighted by what is revealed. Also, though, the mystery was meant to mirror what we experience in real life: We think we know the answer to a question, but it later turns out that we don’t. At one time we believed the Earth was the center of the cosmos, with all the heavenly bodies revolving around it. It was touted as a fact (a matter of science, to stretch a point) but was also part of theologians’ explanation of God’s universe, so it was a matter of religion, too. So when this was disproved, did it mean religion was “wrong”? Is “bad” religion nothing more than superstition, or magic? Magic, faith, and science seem to me to be part of a continuum of understanding—different ways of looking at the same thing. And you can be blindly faithful to your point of view from any of these three perspectives.

You grew up in a small town in Massachusetts, near the historic town of Concord. How did your background play a role in writing The Taker?

I find things from my childhood, small and large, have crept in throughout The Taker. The crypt in which Sophia’s body is stored is taken from one of the five cemeteries in my hometown, a strange vault covered with sod and grass, with padlocked iron gates barring the doors. (How could you not, as a child, think those gates were there to keep the dead from getting out at night?) The description of the attic space in which Uzra hides from Adair is a ringer for the unfinished attic in my childhood home. There was not, however, a boy like Jonathan for whom all the girls pined.

What would you hope to accomplish with an endless eternity of life?

I’m in the camp that would not wish for eternity, I’m afraid. It is the knowledge that we will die that defines our lives. That’s why Lanny and the others are at a loss. They don’t know what to make of life, and partly because they’re ne’er-do-wells, it doesn’t occur to them to apply themselves to something useful. Jonathan figures this out, redeems himself, and because of this, Lanny can’t refuse him his wish.

Do you believe that Lanny has a soul mate? Is Luke her chance for redemption, or just another bump in a very, very long road?

Life is a mystery to Lanny, as it is for many of us when we’re young. We want to grow up, we’re in a hurry to grow up, but we’re not really sure what that means. We have our parents’ examples, the example of some of our friends or siblings, but what if none of them are satisfactory? What if you want more out of life but not only are you not sure how to get it, you’re not even sure what it is you want, exactly? What she wanted was experience, and she got more than she expected. She makes bad choices, but let’s not fool ourselves: Many people make bad choices in their youth. They divorce, remarry, change career fields, move to a new continent—or do none of these things, and remain in a state of desperation. No one is born with the answers and we have only this one life to find fulfillment, or happiness.

Oh dear, I really got on a soapbox there. To address the part about Luke, that very question is answered in book two. It is Lanny’s dilemma, a major test on her way to becoming a thoughtful, caring person deserving of being truly, completely loved.

How did you handle writing the different perspectives and time periods? Did you create them individually, or weave in and out of telling each story as the book is presented?

The book underwent many revisions, but from the very beginning it had the present day story threaded through what is essentially Lanny’s life story. The story-within-a-story—Adair telling his tale—came afterwards. I had originally pictured an entire book devoted to Adair, so that big chunk was carved out of that book. All those difficult structural elements—the shifts in time, POV, even verb tense—are what made writing the book so challenging. It’s sort of a case study of what not to do when writing your first novel.

The immortals of Adair’s court are all deeply flawed in their own way. Is there something to be said about the type of people that are given such magical gifts? Were you at all tempted to tell a story about incredibly decent and altruistic immortals? Is that what Jonathan ultimately represents to you, especially with his dedication to his tribes as a bush doctor?

You’re coming close to the answer to the mystery, which is explained at the end of the series. Redemption is at the heart of the story. We all make mistakes in youth, behave foolishly, selfishly, do things we regret deeply as adults, so in that way, I think the story will resonate (to a degree) with most people.

I see the “magical gifts” a bit differently. The gift these flawed people are given is immortality, but it must be spent in servitude to Adair, with his hellish disposition. He is their jailer, and they have little hope of pardon. It is a kind of inescapable hell on earth. They have no choice but to accept it.

The long arc of time established in the story, and the hints of Adair’s released minions speak to an entire world and slew of characters that we have yet to meet. Do you have plans to continue to tell stories in this established world, possibly as a series?

Absolutely. Readers will meet new minions from Adair’s past in the next book, tentatively titled The Reckoning. You’ll see them contrasted with the ones you know, Tilde, Alejandro, Dona, and struggle with this question of redemption. Some of them will earn redemption at great personal cost.

Who do you see yourself in the most? Lanny, Luke, or Adair?

I didn’t think so but writing is a journey of self-discovery, as cliché as that might sound. Your characters behave a certain way and you, the author, struggle to understand why, and in the process of figuring it out you come to see it’s a recurring problem in your own life, one you haven’t solved. I came to see parts of myself in Lanny. In understanding Jonathan, I realized that he was drawn from maddeningly aloof and emotionally detached men I have known. I think most women have known a Jonathan or two in their lives!

Who are your literary influences?

I have so many it will sound a bit crowded. What comes through most strongly to me, in this book, is The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne and Fanny Hill by John Cleland. As you noted, there’s probably the influence of the post-modernists in there, too, as I was mad for them for a spell, most notably John Barth, Vladimir Nabokov. I think The Taker owes a lot to fairy tales, too. It puts the reader in the funny spot, where on one hand, you’re close to stories from childhood—there’s magical thinking, and the bloody-mindedness of old fairy tales. One interesting thing about fairy tales is that the morality of an individual’s behavior is clear-cut enough so that children are comfortable with their judgments: It’s fairly easy to tell who is right and who is wrong. I think in The Taker, there are some characters about whom you can make these distinctions easily, but with others—Lanny in particular—the story is a bit more complicated. The story is about redemption, but the whole question of what is a transgression is left up to the reader.

Are you working on another novel? If so, will it be in the same style as The Taker, mixing romantic realism and fantastic supernaturalism?

I couldn’t stop thinking about the characters in The Taker, and luckily Gallery Books is fairly smitten with them, too, so I get to continue their story in the next two books. If all goes to plan, the next book will be slightly different from The Taker in that it’s a bit more plot-driven, and the third book is different again in that it’s more fantastical. Hopefully the trio will make for an enjoyable story that never gets stale and always takes the reader to new places.

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The Taker 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 109 reviews.
Shanella More than 1 year ago
This novel is not for the faint of heart. The Taker is the first in a trilogy by Alma Katsu. Well written, well researched, descriptive and a little frightening, Alma tells the story of Lanny, a young girl from the 1800s, who is in love with the town founder's handsome son Jonathan, and what she does to keep him. Luke - a present day doctor from the town that Lanny once grew up in - plays the role of the listener, and I'd venture to say that he's inconsequential to the story; though I'm sure in the remainder of the trilogy he will become important. I was not a fan of Lanny, she was obsessed with Jonathan - who has very few redeeming qualities, other than his face - and mislabels her feelings for him as love. Her character seemed a bit creepy and self-serving. Her world resolves around Jonathan - who was promiscuous and hardly courageous - and she would do just about anything to have him. I'm not entirely sure what anyone in the town saw in him, other than his good looks. Adair, the villan of the story, is quite intriguing. Upon meeting him, the story takes a turn for the disturbing. For fear of giving away spoilers, I wouldn't delve into the mystery around Adair, however, reading his storyline was probably the most engrossing part of the novel for me. The thing that irked me the most was the improper use of love and sex among the characters. Though I believe this is on purpose, obsession was labeled as love and sex was used as a terrible weapon. It was a disturbing theme that ran though the entire story and not quite my cup of tea. I think the mystery of the book and Lanny's quick thinking will appeal to a number of readers. The story has a strong conclusion, while still leaving it open for future books.
AngelaCarr More than 1 year ago
Call me a masochist if need be, but I loved this heartbreaking story. Alma Katsu is a wonderful storyteller. I have to admit that this story is dark and depressing to the point where I wanted to stop reading the book but the Ms. Katsu’s left and right twists of the story kept me flipping the pages non-stop. Lanny finds herself in the ER in shock of what she had just done. She confides in the local doctor and convinces him to help her with her troubles. In their journey, she talks about decades of misfortune and misery. Her love for Jonathan (her first and only love) has no bounds. She would do anything and everything for him. And same goes for Adair (her lover & the one who gave her immortality), but not to a point of love and obsession just means to an end. Unfortunately, these men brought her nothing but heartache after heartache. How she moved on with this immortal life, I have no idea. But then again, how did I keep on reading each heart-wrenching tale she tells? Let me tell you, it is the hope of finding any scrap of happiness for Lenore. This book captured my feelings of lost, regret and made me appreciate my simple mortal life. It goes back and forth from past to future which made the feelings of regrets more intense. I have to warn you, it is a story full of hardships and it is hell on earth. You will either love it or hate it. I don't consider this anything like the Fifty Shades trilogy at all but a class on its own. *Review copy provided by author
gabook More than 1 year ago
I found myself hooked. I definitely wanted to know what was going to happen next. Having said that, I was so frustrated with the main character, Lanny. She is obsessed with Jonathan and repeatedly makes one horrible decision after another because of this obsession. It did grow weary after a while. She is a forward thinker for her time. She knows her place in society and doesn't like it, but her decisions made me want to scream. Her story is at times amusing, dark, scary and romantic. Be forewarned, this book is violent and sex is used as a weapon. There is one scene that really disturbed me and I'm glad the author made it short. I gave this book a high rating because it evoked so much emotion from me. Isn't that what a book is supposed to do?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Over all as I said it was extremely easy to read. I generally read about a chapter a night I was about 14 in before I put it down. I did think it was going to go a different way. The story takes a detour and thought it would just be a hiccup. But this small conflict that I thought would only take a few chapters to get out of ended up being the whole story. Not sure that I liked that but I buy and read it all so I guess it worked. Oh some discriptions I saw talk about what a good love story it is.. Nope. If you're into the whole onesided, he can't be faithful b/c he's so beautiful and women love him so I have to be okay with the short end of the stick type thing then you'll love this. But it is a good book. Dark sometimes but good.
sand7s More than 1 year ago
Very good book. I loved the characters and was sorry to see it end.
Sandy-thereadingcafe More than 1 year ago
3.75 dark and disturbing stars:  THE TAKER can best be described as a novel of mixed genre.  It is a historical fantasy that spans the past to the present with sci-fi undertones, gothic horror and there is a definite love story, of sorts. Some reviewers have labeled The Taker as a romance story that crosses the centuries, but for everything I have read, this is definitely not a romance novel.  The Taker is well written, thought provoking and eerily depressing.  The novel spans two centuries in the life of Lanore (Lanny) McIlvrae and is told through flashbacks and flash forwards using three different and varying points of view.  My biggest concern is that the novel left me depressed yet wanting more.  Apparently I am a reading-masochist at heart because I want to know what happens next and I know I will regret both-not reading and reading more. The novel is divided into three parts and three stories. There are overlapping stories (between the parts) where flashbacks are required to explain the significance to the current day drama and within the parts-the story is told from two different points of view and the current day is narration.  Some readers may find the back and forth confusing, but the individual storytellers recount the circumstances of how they came to be. Lanny and Jonathan is a story of unrequited love.  Lanny has loved Jonathan all of her life and the fact that she has lived more than 200 years, has never eased the longing and memories.  But the heartache grows deeper and the sorrow of loss and pain becomes almost unbearable with every bitter story of conquest and denial.  Jonathan’s history of womanizing will eventually catch up and it will be Lanny who will make the decision between life and death. Lanny and Adair is another story of love, power and control.  But as her Master, Adair demands things from those he has brought into his life, and his demands are hard, especially on Lanny.  Adair believes he is unlovable, a man who has lived 100s if not 1000s of years, but with each incarnation, he becomes more despondent and bored.  His need for Lanny can only be explained as a necessary evil.  Is it because he knows she will never love him the way she have loved Jonathan, or does it go much deeper than a maker to his charge? Lanny and Luke’s relationship is the overlapping narration throughout the story.  On the run from the authorities, Luke aids Lanny in her cross country and cross continent trek searching for the answers as to who and what is Lanny McIlvrae. Their adventure is the storyline.  Lanny recounts her story to Luke, flashing back to the time of her making and allowing Adair’s point of view to flash us back even further. It is this particular part of the storyline that is the apex of the story.  All other storylines are told throughout Lanny and Luke’s adventures. The Taker is a well-written novel. It is not a story of vampires and blood. It is dark, mysterious, depressing and passionate. The storyline will haunt and anger.  There is grief for the loss of a love, of a child and a life once shared. But in all honesty when I finished the novel, I felt depressed.  There was only loneliness and misery, sorrow and pain.  There is no HEA.  But this is only Book ONE.  OK….*looking around for some Xanax and a couch*….on to The Reckoning July 2012 (Book TWO ) and The Devil’s Scribe (e-novella)
kimba88 More than 1 year ago
It had elements I expected and some that made me squeamish. Overall I enjoyed this strange and dark tale. Katsu is a talented writer and her writing style captivated me. Some of the subject matter made me uncomfortable and I found myself skimming through those scenes. Ordinarily I would have stopped reading, but I had this overwhelm need to know Lanore’s story.- that is the beauty of Katsu’s writing. The tale begins at a rural hospital in Maine. Dr. Luke Findley is just beginning his shift and is told the local police are bringing in a murder suspect and need him to check her over. When Lanore McIlvrae walks in, he is shocked that this tiny, beautiful blonde, with cork-screw curls and blue eyes is involved in a murder. She is covered in blood and won’t speak. The police leave a guard and head out to the woods to find the body of the man she confessed to killing. Once inside an exam room, Lanore (Lanny as she prefers), asks Findley to help her escape. She claims that she only helped a friend die at his request and that there are things he cannot understand. Not easily duped he proceeds to examine her, removing Lanny’s bloody clothing and looking for injuries. It is then that Lanny grabs a scalpel and shows Findley something he won’t soon forget. She then proceeds to tell him her story….the tale that unfolds is romantic, dark, gritty and spans nearly two hundred years. Lanore shares her life story with us. She begins her tale in 1809 set against the Maine Territory. The author skillful takes us from the present to the past. Lanore tells the past, and Findley the present. This was clever because Findley could clarify things by asking questions about what we had just read. The tale that Lanore share’s with us is so unbelievable that it had a ring of truth to it. It is a one-sided love story about her and a man named Jonathan. It is filled with obsession, alchemy, and magic. Some of the events that occur in Boston, supernatural elements aside, are probably based in truth, but nevertheless made this reader uncomfortable. There are two sides to Lanore and I found her to be complex and interesting. When it came to Jonathan and her feelings for him, she was a naïve, love sick child. Then the author shows us the darker side of Lanore and I was entranced. At times I questioned her feelings for Jonathan, especially after his selfish acts. Findley is captivated and horrified by Lanore and her story. Yet he is unable to resist hearing it to its conclusion. Lanore’s story contains lots of sex, some implied and others graphic. It contains all forms of sexual encounters and may offend some readers. Think of an opium house and you will get the idea. Katsu offers us an intriguing look at unrequited love. While some of the subject matter was dark, I ultimately enjoyed the Taker. Days after reading it, I find myself thinking about Lanore and Jonathan.
Mother_Gamer_Writer More than 1 year ago
There is NOT one perfect word to describe this novel. Matter of fact, there is not one perfect sentence to describe this novel. To express what The Taker is you must live the experience, every word, every laugh, and every despicable act that transpired. When I thought I had the heart story figured out, Katsu changed it up and made it into something else entirely. It was an intensely dark tale of unrelenting love and the struggle one woman went through to keep it in her possession. I also had the pleasure of interviewing Alma Katsu on my blog and it was absolutely wonderful! She is a delight and there is more than meets the eye with her characters.
Icecream18 More than 1 year ago
Lanore is one of the main characters in this book and she is the quality of the book that really draws the reader in. She's a bit of an enigma; Luke, another main character, does not know what to make of her. He meets her under odd circumstances...she is a possible suspect in a brutal murder case. She begins to tell her tale to him as a way of getting him to open up to her and maybe believe her. Where she lived, women were thought of as fixtures in a house, meant for the "women's tasks" and not much else. There were fairly rigid rules. Jonathan comes along and really shakes her up. Their relationship grows from friends to "something more" and then goes a step further-she discovers she is pregnant with his child. She is sent away from home to give birth, shamed. She is supposed to return without the child, she cannot keep her own baby. However, she is apprehended and taken by an evil man called Adair...her tale gets more and more sordid and horrible from here, the story really takes off. The plot is interesting and, in part, horrifying. The reader will be captivated by some of the more lengthy descriptions of Lanore's experiences. She is a sympathetic character who is likable and the reader will have no trouble enjoying her character. The secondary characters vary widely; some are nice, some are cruel, and other are more..."eh." This novel is, if nothing, interesting and worth a read. This book would be great for adult readers who enjoy mystery and drama.
harstan More than 1 year ago
At Aroostook County Hospital in St. Andrew, Maine, Dr. Luke Findley works the ER graveyard shift. Sheriff Duchesne brings in a handcuffed young person covered with blood and wearing no coat on a freezing night. The sheriff believes Lanore McIlvrae murdered Jonathan. In the ER with only Luke present, Lanny insists she is innocent. She explains her family exiled her to Boston to give birth to an illegitimate child in 1817. There she met ancient alchemist Count Adair and his retinue. The Count saved her life when he gave her an immortality potion but at the cost of her becoming his mistress. Lanny accepted what her savior expected of her until now when he went after her true love Jonathan. The merger of alchemy and love in Maine makes for a strong rural fantasy. The story line starts a bit slow as the key players are introduced directly and indirectly in the present and the past; once done the plot accelerates as skeptical readers and a doubting Luke become hooked believers. The key to The Taker is that the audience accepts as true Lanny's Faustian cautionary tale of evil's eternal energy to remain alive at all costs to others. Harriet Klausner
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it!
Beverly_D More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved the cover, and the plot was filled with twists and turns. There was also some occasionally gorgeous writing. BUT... I did not really care what happened to either Luke, nor Lanore, and the device of Lanore telling a story and then switching to yet another voice, another time period, did not work well for me. This book did interest me enough to finish it, but not enough for me to want to read the rest of the trilogy. Also, the Lanore & Jonathan "love story" is really a story of a handsome guy who's a narcissistic jerk, and the girl who's unhealthily obsessed by him, which is neither enhanced nor improved by being spread out over a couple of centuries.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've never written a comment on a book or otherwise before. I felt compelled to do so with this book. Excellent. Couldn't put it down. I happened upon this book, i do not know if it is a NY Times bestseller but it should be, I've read a number of books from the Times Bestsellers but this is perhaps the best i've ever read. The storyline is incredibly unique but with a familiar undertone. Very captivating. Love Love Loved it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
kopsahl More than 1 year ago
With her blend of history and fantasy, Alma Katsu comes blazing out of the gates with her first novel. The best aspect of this novel is the fact that the fantasy part of the story is very obtuse. You don’t really know what the main character, Lanny McIlvrae is except that she is immortal. With Lanny’s beginnings told in flashbacks to Dr. Luke Findley, the reader is drawn into this story of doomed love and dark desires. Dr. Luke Findley has hit rock bottom. His wife has left him and he feels trapped in the small Main town of St. Andrews. When he clocks into his night shift he never dreamed he would find himself on the run with a mysterious woman named Lanny who was brought in by the police as a murder suspect. As Lanny explains her life, from her humbled beginnings to why she murdered the only man she has ever loved, Luke finds himself falling for this petite damaged woman. Even though this story says it is a love story, I didn’t feel there was much romance between these pages. This love story is what I stated above, doomed love. From Lanny’s childhood crush on Jonathan that turns into an obsession to her dark tormented relationship with Adair, the man that gave her immortality. Lanny’s life is full of darkness and sadness. I would definitely recommend this story to anyone that liked Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles. The world building is exceptional and has the potential to be an amazing trilogy. It will consume the reader until the very final pages and leave you desiring the next installment. I am so glad that I took the advice of my local bookstore employee and picked this one up. I think I found a new author to add to my favorites list!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Intriguing! Can't wait to read book two.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was Great!.. loved the the story line and the characters. definitely worth reading.  this book has a little bit of everything in it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book. You should read this. I'm addicted and can' t wait for the third book!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just can't finish this book. Just getting to weird & to violent for my taste.