TITLE: The Replaced
SERIES: The Taking #2
AUTHOR: Kimberly Derting
PUBLICATION DATE: April 28, 2015
PAGES: 368 pages
SOURCE: Publisher via Edelweiss
RATING: 4 bows
Kyra’s life was turned upside down when she was abducted by aliens. That 5 year disappearance managed to take everything she cared about away from her and then, just when she starts to make new connections, her new love gets taken away as well. Now, Kyra is on the run from the NSA with the other Returned, Kyra goes to extremes to find Tyler. When they discover an email that implies Tyler is alive and well….in NSA hands, Kyra is willing to risk everything to get him back. Together with a select few of the Returned, they make a plan to bust Tyler out of lockdown and maybe steal some classified info while they are at it. But these things rarely go as planned and Kyra quickly learns that every action has consequences. What kind of trouble does she find herself in? You’ll just have to read to find out!
Kyra is still a character I adore. She’s a bit stronger here than she was in The Taking, but still basically the same character. She’s smart and caring and her devotion to Tyler had me sympathizing with her all the more. If you enjoyed her perspective before, you’ll continue to do so here. I can’t say too much else about the characters without going into spoiler territory, so I’ll leave it at this: you get a decent group of people all with interesting stories and quirks, but all is not as it seems.
I really enjoyed The Taking. It was one of those books that I just could not put down. From page one, I was hooked. I was desperate to learn not only what the hell had happened to Kyra, but also how everyone would react to her return. So I was ecstatic to see the sequel up on Edelweiss and I didn’t hesitate to grab it immediately. This, I thought, would be awesome. This would be a novel that I would burn my way through as I did with the first one. That, however, was not the case. While I did enjoy it and I think it’s a fair continuation of the story, I didn’t love it like I did with the first one. Some of the magic was missing. I think there are several things that contributed to this. The pass was quite a bit slower here and not much gets accomplished. It seemed to have just a little of that middle book syndrome thing going on. We get action and adventure, but it’s pretty clear that nothing is really going to be resolved here.
My big problem was the missing Tyler. Tyler was the magical ingredient, in my opinion. The first novel had this great contemporary science fiction vibe that I adored. A big part of that was the romance between Kyra and Tyler. Tyler was abducted at the end of The Taking, in order to save his life, and we don’t get him back early on here. We don’t get him back until the novel is half over. Even then, let’s just say the reunion is not everything you have been dreaming of, okay? In Tyler’s absence, Simon tries to put the moves on Kyra, pulling us into that dreaded love triangle territory. It was skirted around in The Taking and I was hoping we could continue to avoid it here, but no such luck. Simon has no qualms telling Kyra how he feels and that she can’t wait for Tyler forever. Which, quite honestly, made me want to slap him. Kyra, for her part, wasn’t much better. I won’t say much because I don’t want to have to label this as a spoilery review, but her reactions to him aren’t always the resounding rejection that it should be.
Basically, this novel is good, but it doesn’t quite live up to the awesomeness that was The Taking. It’s entertaining and has some twists that you don’t see coming, but that gets bogged down in a slow moving plot, love triangle, and yet another cliffhanger. I still recommend it to everyone who enjoyed the first novel and I think highly of it, but I just a little disappointed because it didn’t live up to my expectations. Regardless, it gave me quite a few answers and another peak into this world that Derting has created. That’s enough to satisfy me….for now.
****Thank you to HarperTeen for providing me with an eARC via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review****
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