Tag Archives: Rune Alexander

Cane, Laken: New Regime (Rune Alexander V) (2014)

New Regime - Laken CaneThe Rune Alexander serial is dark. Probably too dark for a lot of you out there.

Life hasn’t gotten any easier for Rune. Others against humans, others against others and humans against others does not make for a quiet life for the Shiv Crew. Racism is a strange thing. Inside my head my logical part tells me that the oppressed should be above being racist themselves. But that just isn’t so. The Others have been killed for sport by many humans. Turns out the Others aren’t any better themselves really, because there is always another person whose looks/qualities places them lower on the value-ladder. In New Regime the ones who seem to be the lowest of the low are the Pikes. And the Pikes know it.

Rune asks Owen if he thinks she is evil. Owen’s answer is that she is who she is. And really, how do you define evil? Is it even possible? I doubt it. Rune fights for the people she cares for. In her case those people are the Shiv Crew and their unofficial mascot, Gunnar. For them she would do anything. To her enemies, Rune and Shiv Crew are evil. But the world is like that. We are divided into us and them and the evil ones happen to be all of THEM. The Others, the Humans, the Magic, the Strangers, the Fanatics and on and on the list goes. All of these groups have branches that consider the Shiv Crew disposable, usable or tortureable. And the feelings are often mutual.

Rune is her monster and her monster is Rune. Finally, Rune is coming to terms with that. Both want to be in control and finding the balance between the two is a struggle. While few of us will have to wade through the blood and gore that the Shiv Crew do, some people have to live lives fraught with life and death situations daily. How do people balance their monsters and kinder sides in such situations? Probably the way Rune has had to, by accepting that she is becoming the person she is and needs to find a way to live with.

There is plenty of blood and gore. Some humor. Some romance, although not of the “sigh” variety. Plenty of friendship. Plenty of action. Some really sad situations. Definitely recommended.

Majorly cool ending! Just saying.

I received a reviewer’s copy.


Reviews:


New Regime available on Amazon US, Amazon UK


My reviews of:

  1. Shiv Crew
  2. Blood and Bite
  3. Strange Trouble
  4. Obsidian Wings

Cane, Laken: Obsidian Wings (Rune Alexander IV)

Obsidian Wings

The birds annoyed me. Not because they are were-birds/shapeshifters but because Cree carried a person as large as Shad. My asperger soul was triggered to the point of obsession and that set me off in research mode. That is when it became fun. I adore digging into stuff. While increasing my knowledge on the requirements for flight vs. weight vs. mass vs. pain tolerance vs. … I discovered a couple of things (at least that was the way all of this information was put together inside my head). There is a theoretical possibility of humans being able to fly. For flight to happen the human’s form would have to change drastically making us more like the flying creatures we know and less like humans. Were-birds or genetic tinkering are the only alternatives. Whether this would make Cree able to carry Shad is another matter altogether, and not knowing is now something I feel comfortable with.

I feel I need to thank Laken Cane for handing me this chance to look at the possibility of humans and flight.

Much later, she lay wrapped in his arms and realized she’d never felt more at peace than when she was with the berserker.

It was not a wholly comforting thought.

Sometimes knowing that another person’s presence brings a sense of completion can frighten us. I happen to be married to a man who brings me that sense. Allowing the peace he brought to set roots in my life was incredibly complicated and perhaps even worrying. What would happen to me if my heart gave up that piece of me? Personally, I do not have words for what his entry into my heart brought.

For a person like Rune, with the frightening and lonely background she has had filled with self-harm, self-disgust and self-fear, letting go of part of herself would be an even greater challenge. Yet a choice needs to made sooner or later. And it will be made eventually and during Obsidian Wings.

In the meantime Shad is driving Rune crazy with his over-protectiveness and willingness to fight Owen for her. I have no idea what Owen’s obsession is with Rune. Nor do I understand why Cruikshanks thinks he is unable to stay away from Rune. Three men driving Rune insane with their need for her while all (hah, hah) she wants is for her world to become whole again, Z to live and the twins to be back in the group, giving Ellis his Levi back and Lex her anchors.

I liked the second demon that turns up on the scene. Well, really it is the first demon but in a way it ends up being the second one for a lot of people. That is about as confusing as I can make this statement in my attempt to avoid giving anything away.

So, yes! Once I had resolved my issues with the birds I was a happy one myself and finished Obsidian Wings in no time.



My review of:

  1. Shiv Crew
  2. Blood and Bite
  3. Strange Trouble

Shaman shapeshifting into a bird
Shaman shapeshifting into a bird; By Susan Seddon Boulet

Birds of Paradise project (Cornell University)

If a human were to have wings? (SciFi Forums)

On Shapeshifting (Sarah Ann Lawless)

Shapeshifting (Wikipedia)

Shapeshifting (World of Warcraft)

Tengu: Guildwars (Wikipedia)

Voluntary shapeshifting (TV Tropes)

Why can’t humans fly like birds? (Rhett Allain)

Cane, Laken: Strange Trouble (Rune Alexander III) (2014)

Strange trouble

Bloody hell. Give the poor girl a break. Laken Cane drives her main character, Rune Alexander, hard. And can she write! All of that exquisitely described pain and anguish. Holy horror of a cow! What a life our heroine leads.

Rune Alexander fills me with compassion. I want to crawl into Strange Trouble and somehow comfort her, to let her know that she is OK as she is. My own ghost pain is awakened, and I want to tell her that things will get better. But I would be lying by saying that because Ms. Cane is a cruel mistress for the Shiv Crew.

The Rune Alexander series is a bleak and dark series. There aren’t a great deal of happy moments. Well, there are plenty of happy moments, but that is what they are. Moments. Then Rune and the gang is ripped back into the terror and ache of having to be the “good guys” in spite of all of the persecution and loss. Yet Ms. Cane’s writing makes it all endurable.

The vampires, zombies and werewolves of the Rune Alexander series are not the fluffy ones that we sometimes see in literature today. These are the good, old-fashioned kind. The ones that were told stories about around the fires while night turned into darkest dark and became all the more frightening because we could no see the world.

As usual, I have a couple of favorite moments. Rune’s gift to Ellie – perfect. That put a huge smile on my face. Rune advising Raze about relationships – pot/kettle much? The two episodes with the obsidian sword. Shad and Fie at the hospital – incredibly cute. The monster’s comment: What will you do? … Hurt me? And finally Ms. Cane’s description of Damascus – whew that lady needs to work on her charm.

Laken Cane has kept the promise of Shiv Crew. Her writing has been riveting, tense and tight through all three novels.


  • File Size: 2202 KB
  • Print Length: 296 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Laken Cane (February 4, 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00I8ZGNY6

My review of:

  1. Shiv Crew
  2. Blood and Bite

Strange Trouble was given to me as a reviewer’s copy.

Cane, Laken: Blood and Bite (Rune Alexander II) (2013)

Blood and Bite

Blood and Bite was given to me as a reviewer’s copy.

As you all know I loved the first installment of the Rune Alexander series, Shiv Crew. Talk about dark. I am going to state one major complaint about Blood and Bite. It was simply too short. Way too short. I was having this humongously fun time reading it and then it was over. Bummer.

So now you know. I liked Blood Bite. There were still the “baby’s” that I thought were weird. Norwegians just don’t go around throwing endearments at people we like. I kind of wish we did.

Shiv Crew is still adorable. I want to give them all a big hug. You’ve got this gang of huge (except for Rune and Lex) guys running around killing monsters in monstrous ways and I want to give them a group-hug. I must be messed up.

The characters that are the most fun in Blood and Bite are Rune and Ellis. I think that these two characters are the ones that kind of carry the story or maybe the idea of Shiv Crew. Ellis is Shiv Crew’s assistant but also their mascot and heart. At least that is the way Rune feels. Without him she thinks she would fall apart. And Rune might be right about that. For in spite of her stay with the shrinks at the rehab Rune is still messed up, although she is dealing more sensibly with her “monster”. Her mantra has become: “I am my monster, and my monster is me.” Rune’s monster loves fighting. Rune is not averse to it either. If there is one thing she excels at it is fighting. Along with the fighting Rune instills a sense of loyalty in those who work with her (nut-cases excepted).

There are a couple of nut-cases in Blood and Bite. Nicolas Llodra, the vampire master, and Tim Emerson, the Church of Slayers, are the worst ones in Rune’s life at the moment. Nicky has gone bonkers. Insanity seems to be the doom of all vampires. Whether Rune is one is kind of difficult to say. She believes that herself, but we as readers are given hints that there is something else in her blood. Insanity is the one thing that terrifies Rune and killing Nicholas seems a mercy-stroke to her. If only he wasn’t holding something over the heads of Shiv Crew.

Tim Emerson is a nut-case in a human manner. We all know that the worst monsters out there are humans. When we go bad we seem to go all out. Fanaticism just gives us that push to do what we might otherwise hesitate to do. My opinion is that Tim Emerson would have been a cold-blooded monster even without the Church of Slayers. But getting rid of Emerson without proof is difficult.

Raze, our rat-loving, Shiv Crew member is out of jail and Shad returns from Philadelphia with his wife and son. Gunnar the Ghoul is stranger than usual. Ellis is having trouble in his love-life. And – to top it all – Rune’s house is burned down. Hurrah, let’s just give the girl another challenge.

I think there are probably authors out there who love to make the lives of their main protagonists as difficult as possible, and I suspect Laken is such an author. But it makes for a fun time for the reader.

Anyways, have fun. Oh, and there is no sex but some explicit violence.



My review of Shiv Crew

Cane, Laken: Shiv Crew (Rune Alexander I) (2013)

Shiv Crew
Editor: A. Chance

Wow. Just wow. The cover is gorgeous and so is the first story in the Rune Alexander series. I mean it – Wow. Cane practically had me bawling by the end of chapter 7. I had to put my tablet down, it was so sad.

I just had to say that before stating that I received a reviewer’s copy from Laken Cane a couple of days ago. Here is my review.

As you might have guessed, I loved this novel. There were a couple of “baby’s” that I could have done without but that is only because I’ve never used baby in my own vocabulary.

There is an adult content warning at the beginning of the novel that I felt was a bit extreme. Folks, Shiv Crew is dark, very dark. Other than that an older young adult would be perfectly safe reading it. I have read young adult novels with a lot more explicit violence (sad to say). As the sexual content is very low-tone in Shiv Crew there isn’t that to worry about either.

No romance. Can you believe it. A female hero and no romance. Oops, I lie. Toward the end there is a kiss.

What we do have is a lot of pain. My goodness is Rune Alexander, our protagonist, hurting. Cane’s description of Rune’s self-loathing and grief is amazing. Like I said, she practically had me bawling. All through the novel I carried that pain inside my chest and cheeks.

Enough about that. Action. Is there any action? Is there ever. Shiv Crew is a group of extremely dangerous individuals, of which Rune Alexander happens to be one. These guys have to kill Others (vampires, ghouls, werewolves and such) whenever they overstep the bounds humans have set for them. We are talking about seriously tough people. And huge. And protective. And sweet.

I don’t understand how Cane has managed to make Shiv Crew so adorable. Or maybe I kind of do – maybe. I think Ellis is part of the reason. He just so adorable and kind and GOOD.

Of course Rune has a huge secret she is hiding from her guys. Well two huge secrets. Both secrets will come back and bite her and the others in their behinds. But that is part of being a fantasy creature. Having one’s behind bitten is part of the game.

Humour. Yes there is humour. Dark humour, but humour. Enough to make me smile and chuckle at times.

Can you tell I loved Shiv Crew? If the next installment in the series had been out, I would have bought it already. I mean, WOW.


Reviews


  • File Size: 448 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Laken Cane; 1 edition (27 Aug 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00EUBZS9I