Despite the science fiction setting, the novel is more concerned with human elements, such as the interplay between Liv and Tonio, Liv and her mother, and–of course–Liv and Zia. The plot was believable, the setting was well-conceived and consistent, and there weren’t any threads left untied at the conclusion. Pegau showed herself willing to make difficult authorial decisions in order to lend weight to her narrative, and both Liv and Zia were portrayed as sympathetic, if flawed, people. My main quibble was the author’s resistance to using the Oxford comma, which could have made a sentence like “The guard, an elderly couple, Calvin and I lay on our bellies, hands on the backs of our heads and cheeks to the rough wood” more straightforward. . . but that is my own pet peeve, and I can’t really hold it against the book. I’ll just hold it against the book’s editor.
I knew I liked Rulebreaker when I kept thinking of other books and fanfiction to compare it to. Despite my strong dislike for the current trend of employer-employee romances in Harlequin romances, I do have a few I like in terms of lesbian fiction. For another good “boss romance,” try Too Close to Touch by Georgia Beers. I also highly recommend Telanu’s Andy/Miranda fanfiction from the world of The Devil Wears Prada, which can be found at her site, The Rag and Bone Shop. For a great lesbian “con” book, see Fingersmith by Sarah Waters. For another story of corporate greed and corruption and spreadsheets + romance, try Karin Kallmaker’s Car Pool.