R.A.V.E.N by Rebecca Cline
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press Inc.
Genre: Action/Adventure, Paranormal, Contemporary
Length: Full Length (400 pgs)
Heat Level: spicy
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Fern
Kachina Raven is a Reconnaissance Agent for the Vampire Eradication Network.
One night while escaping a murderous cult of vampire wannabes, she meets Kael. There is an immediate attraction but she knows there is something odd about him. He has some very unusual skills and abilities. She’s sure he isn’t a vampire but knows he’s no ordinary human either.
She knows she’ll always be stalked by vampires and doesn’t want to put anyone else at risk by having a relationship with them. Her life is further complicated by the relentless pursuit of a homeland security agent.
Kael is an alpha male used being the protector but Raven makes it clear she can fight her own battles. He’s frustrated by her refusal to acknowledge the strength of the attraction between them and is determined to have her as his mate.
After wrapping her motorcycle around a tree, Raven seeks the safety of a large biker pub to escape the vampire cult goons chasing after her. Drawing many of the customers' attention, it’s Kael whose gaze she senses most sharply. The attraction between them is electric, instant and undeniable. When a number of the cult members – and their vampire leader – track her to the pub, the situation becomes dire. Kael and Raven escape together, and start down a long and winding path neither could have forseen.
This is a quick-moving, action packed vampire and werewolf book. The characters are gritty and modern, tough but still quite easily relatable to. I thoroughly enjoyed both the dense plot and the multi-layered, complex characters. Raven is a seriously kick-ass vampire hunter with slick moves and five years experience under her belt. Although mostly human and fallible, she is not some lame, half-baked wanna be.
Matching her perfectly, Kael is an alpha werewolf, with keen senses and more than a few tricks up his sleeve. While always clearly explained and understandable, I got a little frustrated with Raven and Kael not trusting each other. Instead of using any and all resources – including each other – I found it strange they’d run from one another despite the attraction neither denies. Despite this and a few other small niggles I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Especially as the first in a series it started on a high note – the plot is convoluted and engrossing, the characters are strongly written and practically jump from the page.
There is a bit of back-story to catch up with and sometimes took me a moment or two to follow along with what was going on, but those times were easily overshadowed by the action and characterization. Overall I’d certainly recommend this book to paranormal readers, especially ones that like a bit of spice and plenty of heat in their romance. There are a number of other well-written, strong secondary characters from both the Vampire Eradication Network and I’d certainly expect more follow up books in this series.