Sunday, July 26, 2015

The Unleashing by Shelly Laurenston

Title: The Unleashing
Author: Shelly Laurenston
Series: #1 in the Call of Crows series
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Kensington (March 31, 2015)

Source: Publisher Via NetGalleyPublic Online Library
Rating: ☕☕

Kera Watson never expected to face death behind a Los Angeles coffee shop. Not after surviving two tours lugging an M16 around the Middle East. If it wasn’t for her hot Viking customer showing up too late to help, nobody would even see her die.

In uncountable years of service to the Allfather Odin, Ludvig “Vig” Rundstrom has never seen anyone kick ass with quite as much style as Kera. He knows one way to save her life—but she might not like it. Signing up with the Crows will get Kera a new set of battle buddies: cackling, gossiping, squabbling, party-hearty women. With wings. So not the Marines.

But Vig can’t give up on someone as special as Kera. With a storm of oh-crap magic speeding straight for L.A., survival will depend on combining their strengths: Kera’s discipline, Vig’s loyalty… and the Crows’ sheer love of battle. Boy, are they in trouble.

My Thoughts: While I admit to be thoroughly intrigued by the idea behind this book I am not completely in love the with the final result.

The Good: Among the over played vampire and werewolf themed paranormal worlds this was such an an interesting and fresh concept (if one overlooks the fact that this author wrote another book featuring the Crow/Raven world called Hunting Season in 2009). I love mythology and factor in that it is Norse mythology at that I could have seriously loved this book. The book starts out so good. Kera starts the book out with a bang and I just knew I was in for a treat. A truly Kick-Ass heroine, add a dashing hot viking of a man, stir in Norse mythology, throw in some snark and viola! A concoction of fabulousness! Not so much....

The Bad: As a romance I thought it fell flat. I think the book focused on Kera getting used to her new life rather than a substantial romance. They had quite a bit of sex but romance, not so sure about that.  I really think that there was enough conflict surrounding Kera that spreading her romance over the course of several books would have made for a stronger sense of commitment between the H/h. 

Speaking of her new life as a Crow...ugh! The crows reminded me of a bunch of bubble brained sorority girls rather than the intelligent adults they were supposed to be. Their sink or swim mentality on welcoming a new sister was seriously flawed and didn't endear them to me at all.

Let's talk characters! There is an extraordinary amount of characters in this book. I know in a first book there is an introduction phase where the author tries to establish their world and characters. However, it's important to not overwhelm the reader with dozens of people to remember. In this book, not only do we have to keep track of their first names but their last names too because the author will refer to them by first and then a paragraph later by their last name. This is further complicated by changing POVs throughout the book. It was sometimes difficult to know whose point of view we were now reading from one paragraph to another.

In a Nut Shell: Very little is ultimately resolved at the end of the book but I'm not sure I'm wanting to read another. I hate when a book has so much potential and fails so miserably. 

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