Manic Readers said that I could post as much of their review as I wanted, so I've posted it below.
My thanks once again to MR and to the reviewer, Merrylee.
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Rune Alexander lives to kill—Others, that is. It’s her job to protect humans against the supernaturals who live side by side with humans. But there’s a lot not even her Shiv Crew know about her. She’s more than human, but what that is isn’t certain, not even to Rune, who deplores what she secretly is. Beyond that, she carries horrendous guilt that’s left her mentally broken in so many ways only submitting to a lover who does appalling things to her can temporarily cleanse her of the guilt tormenting her.
When people she trusts betray her and she learns someone is sexually abusing Other women and extorting money from Others in Spiritgrove and the surrounding River County, the tables are turned on Rune and her crew. They must break the rules to protect the Others from humans, including a faceless leader known only as Preston. But as the darkness inside Rune becomes stronger and she ends up fighting a battle she must win, can she trust a man she calls the berserker, a man who’s been sent to spy on her, with her heart? Strad Matheson seems to accept Rune’s inner darkness, even care for her despite of it, but will he be able to save her from the part of her she can no longer deny and must come to understand?
Laken Cane’s first book, Shiv Crew, opens a monumental new urban fantasy series that promises to blow the rest of its ilk out of the water. Her opening salvo is fast-paced, with an exciting plot populated with colorful, multi-dimensional and appealing (or thoroughly disgusting) characters, some of which you wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley. Others, like Strad, the twins—Denim and Levi Montrosa, and master vampire Nicolas Llodra, are so intense and frankly, HOT, you’ll be drooling on your eReader and licking your lips whenever they make an entrance. You’ll also like Rune’s gay best friend, Ellis (Ellie as she calls him), and Lex, a blind girl who can do such amazing things it will absolutely blow your mind.
For the most part, the supernaturals aren’t the real monsters in this book; humans are. Some of them anyway. As a heroine, Rune is flawed and imperfect…just like all of us, but in her own unique way. She’s dangerous, sometimes to herself and so courageous and admirable in so many ways she stands head and shoulders taller than her diminutive five-foot-four. However, I warn you, her means of self-flagellation to make amends and seek peace for her past wrongs isn’t easy to witness. It’s painful and bloody, but somehow Ms. Cane manages to pull it off without the reader emerging from it without a feeling revulsion for Rune. You understand her need for physical pain to assuage her emotional pain.
Personally, I’ve put Laken Cane (pseudonym of a published paranormal romance author currently living in the Midwest) at the top of my auto-buy list and can’t wait for book two in her Rune Alexander series, Blood and Bite, to come out.
Shiv Crew at Amazon