Taken! is not the kind of book you stop and analyze. It’s not deep or profound, but if you take it for what it is – an incredibly sensuous story with two very likable lead characters, I think you will be pleased.
Dillon Oaks is a consultant who has been brought in by the Johnson’s Sporting Goods firm to run a security check for them. The firm has had a suspected case of embezzlement and wants a total security overhaul. Johnson’s Sporting Goods is owned by siblings Cliff, Virginia, and Kelsey Johnson. Cliff has the title of president, but the true brains behind the business is Virginia, a big, bold and brilliant woman who does not go around hiding her light under a bushel. Because she is so much better than he is in business, Cliff dislikes Virginia and treats her rudely. Kelsey Johnson is in school and stays out of the way of their fights.
Dillon has taken the job because the suspected embezzler is his half-brother, Wade. Wade insists on his innocence and accuses Cliff of planting evidence against him because Wade and Kelsey Johnson are in love and want to marry. In order to get evidence to clear Wade, Dillon needs access to Virginia’s computer files, and sets out to woo her – a task that begins as a duty and quickly becomes a pleasure.
Virginia’s past experiences with men have not been good. She is an alpha female who can’t stand wimps, plus she is a successful business woman who can smell a fortune hunter a mile away. Virginia also suffers from feelings of inferiority because she is about twenty pounds overweight. None of this matters to Dillon. An alpha male himself, he loves her bossiness and temper and as for her weight – Dillon tells her, “Skinny women are too pointy.”
In the course of the investigation, Virginia’s home is broken into and, stubborn as she is, she refuses to take any precautions. Dillon is afraid for Virginia’s safety and sees an opportunity to protect her and to get hold of her computer files while he’s at it, so he kidnaps Virginia and takes her to an isolated cabin.
When you get to this part, put the book down and get something very, very cold – trust me, you will be needing it. When Virginia wakes up to find herself with Dillon who has shed his business suit and is all tight jeans and hard body – well I began to need some ice and when the loves scenes started, I needed dry ice! Taken! has some of the most sensuous love scenes I’ve ever seen in a category novel.
Dillon and Virginia are two perfectly matched people. If Dillon had married a soft, compliant woman he would have been miserable, and if Virginia had married a beta male she would have made mincemeat out of him. I know they say opposites attract, but not here!
There were a few things I did not like about Taken! – Kelsey Johnson is talked about a lot, but we never meet her. Cliff spends most of the book being rude and unfeeling toward Virginia, then toward the very end does an abrupt about-face and actually worries about her, but I put these defects down to the short length of a category novel.
If you like alpha males and want to see one tangle with an alpha female, get Taken! … this is one Blaze title that lives up to the promise of the line – romance that burns out of control.