Review: Take on Me by Minerva Zimmerman (The Shattered Ones #1)


Take on Me by Minerva Zimmerman // VBC ReviewTake on Me (The Shattered Ones #1)
Minerva Zimmerman
Published: Oct. 6, 2015 (Fireside Fiction)
Purchase: Amazon
Review Source: copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review

Reviewed by: Amy

Rating (out of 5): 3 stars

Nothing can prepare Alex for quick thinking in light of an emergency quite like being a doctor. Nothing can help Alex heal a girl found curled up in his shower trying to take her own life like changing her into a vampire. Despite not knowing how the girl got there in the first place, Alex did little thinking and a lot of acting.

Hannah didn’t expect to actually wake up after trying to kill herself. But she has, and now she’s a vampire, whatever that means. When her second chance at life is interrupted by the brother she ran away from, she finds he’s become embroiled in something more dangerous than his normal lies and schemes.

To further complicate matters, a friend of Alex’s shows up asking for help that Alex would rather steer clear of, but when the help needed overlaps with the trouble caused by Hannah’s brother, he’ll have to put aside his uncertainties if he wants to make sure Hannah gets a chance at life again.

It took me a bit before I could get a beat on these characters. With Hannah being new to the vampire world she would obviously have a lot of questions and many of these questions are answered in a more roundabout way than just simply straightforward. Take on Me definitely felt more like a ‘show, don’t tell’ kind of book. While we get flashbacks into Alex’s life, it’s mainly the bits and pieces you pick up through his (and other characters’) actions, and slightly obscure phrasing, that’s the most telling.

Once I got used to the writing style, I rather enjoyed the story. Although, I went into this book with the expectation that it would be a bit more humorous, and it turned out a little more somber. Don’t get me wrong there were plenty of lighter moments as Hannah and Alex take each other’s measure. But what we learn of Hannah’s past before we see her attempt to end her life is tragic. Living causes her to reflect about what she wants her life to be.

Saving Hannah also brings questions to Alex’s mind, hence the myriad flashbacks, and it’s clear he’s had his share of loss in his indeterminably long life. It’s not hard to picture a vampire’s existence as being heartrending when there is the whole immortality and watching those you love die aspect. The fact that he still keeps trying is very telling. As the story progresses, it’s obvious how much Alex and Hannah need each other, and how good of a balance they are for one another.

I really liked the way vampirism manifests in Take on Me. One of the characters even likens it to a “very smart parasitic virus,” seemingly sentient. I rather thought that was a very apt description of what being a vampire in Minerva Zimmerman’s creation is like. While there are still a few things we don’t get an answer to by the end, I finished Take on Me really interested in where Hannah and Alex’s adventures would take them next.

Graphic content: scenes of a disturbing nature involving suicide attempt

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