I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
The Unleashing by Shelly Laurenston
Series: Crows #1
Published by Kensington Publishing Corp. Genres: Paranormal
Kara Watson is a former Marine trying to figure out her next moves now that she isn’t in the military—including if she should just rejoin—and working in a coffee shop to make ends meet while she decides. Kara has had a couple of high points in this year. The first was when she rescued her pit bull, Brodie Hawaii, (because that is their hopeful future destination) and the other is seeing one of her regulars at the coffee shop. Kara thinks he might be a vet who is having trouble now that he is out of the military, but she does seem to watch for him and have his order at the ready.
Ludvig “Vig” Rundstrom is a Viking and a Raven. He was also slowly, very slowly working up the nerve to ask Kara out. But before that could happen, he finds her dying in the alley behind the coffee shop she works at. Vig just can’t let Kara die, so he calls on the Goddess Skuld to see if she will accept Kara as one of her Crows, and the rest is soon to be history.
Kara wakes up in a huge house filled with a strange selection of women living there. There is everything from tattoo artists to actresses, and they all have one thing in common—they have all died and accepted Skuld’s offer to be one of her warriors. Kara is a bit confused by all that is suddenly her life, yet she is determined to make the best of it, even if Kara’s drive for organization might put her in conflict with all the other Crows. Kara finds herself thrown in at the deep end, and it is getting serious on the job training. Part of that training is learning about the other Nordic groups who do things for the Gods. Kara finds out that Vig is actually a hunky Raven, and he really is a Viking and a weapons master. Vig helps Kara during her struggles to come to grips with what the Crows do and her own beliefs. Along the way, Vig and Kara learn that passion is theirs for the taking if Kara can decide what to do with her life and if the Crows and Ravens can survive to find out what is turning their world upside down right now.
A woman-shy Viking and a take-control former Marine end up joining forces to find not only love, but to defeat a group trying to destroy the world as it is known in The Unleashing. OMG! I just loved the Crows—from Kara to Chole to Erin and all of them in between. I really loved how Kara worked to find her place in her new circumstances. Finding out how Vig gave that life to Kara, because he didn’t want to lose her before he could really know her, made me want to give him a huge hug, too. The adventures that Kara and Vig went through just to have the chance at a forever, had me rolling my eyes at times and laughing at other times. They might be from very different backgrounds but, man, they are so right for each other.
I can already tell that The Crows will be another must-read series by Ms. Laurenston for me. The Unleashing had it all for me, including snarky and funny women who take no prisoners, but will die to protect one another. Kara in particular is just that type of woman, and Vig was the strong man who loves her even with all her kookiness. I can say for sure that this is one book that will be staying on my reader. There is so, so much I haven’t told you that will keep you engrossed in this book until it’s over. Needless to say, I Joyfully Recommend The Unleashing as a must-read.