Hey all, time for another review and today's pick is Dark Lover by #1 New York Times best selling author... J.R. Ward! This is the first book in her phenomenal Black Dagger Brotherhood series.
Title: Dark Lover
Author: J.R. Ward
Publisher: Signet Eclipse
Released: September 2005
Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood, Book #1
Source: My personal copy
From J.R. Ward's website:
In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There also exists a secret band of brothers like no other - six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Among them, none relishes killing their enemies more than Wrath, the leader of the Black Dagger Brotherhood...
The only purebred vampire left on the planet, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But when one of his most trusted fighters is killed- orphaning a half-breed daughter unaware of her heritage or her fate - Wrath must usher the beautiful female into the world of the undead…
Wrath is the last purebred left in the vampire race, but due to a birth defect he has extremely poor sight. Wrath is also their King if he chooses to be. Too bad he really doesn't want to be King and that if you call him 'my Lord' he's likely to snarl at you or put you into a coma. Be careful not to become his enemy because if you are....he will hunt you down and tear you apart with help from the Black Dagger Brotherhood he leads. There maybe only be 6 of the Brothers left but that's more than enough to put a world of hurt on the Lessening Society (enemies of the vampire race). The Black Dagger Brotherhood is the elite group of warriors whose calling it is to exterminate the those humans who have sold their souls to the Omega (aka Lessers), who are killing off civilian vampires one by one. Lessers have the distict smell of baby powder surrounding them as well as hair and skin that turns white the older they get. All 6 brothers love what they do and are the ultimate alpha males of their world. The BDB is made up of; their leader Wrath, second in command Tohrment (Tohr), model gorgeous Rhage (aka Hollywood), tech-savvy, precognitive Vishous, and finally twins Phury and Zsadist.
At the beginning of Dark Lover the brotherhood has 7 members but Darius is killed in an explosion, leaving his half human, half vampire daughter, Beth, unaware of her heritage or her fate. As a last favour to his fallen brother, Wrath decides he will help Beth through the transition from her half human state to becoming a full blooded vampire (something that occurs around age 25). Wrath becomes unexpectedly attracted to stunning Beth and his world is shaken up by her... he rejects his lust and attraction, fighting his feelings believing he is the last thing she needs...Beth, in turn, is frightened by this leather clad, muscled warrior who appears in her life telling her wild stories of vampires and her fathers involvement with them. However her attraction to Wrath is strong and soon they find themselves unable to live without each other...but the Blind King has enemies. Soon the Lessening Society is hunting them down, and the question becomes can they keep each other safe or will the Lessening society claim the lives of the Royal couple?
Wow, Wow, Wow.....Seriously..just Wow. I mean I'd read other people's reviews and knew it was going to be good, but I was still amazed at just how good Dark Lover was. This book has everything I could have ever asked for. Amazing characters, good plot and a genius author who pulls it all together with such brilliant writing that you can see what Wrath and Beth see, feel what they feel. I know I became so connected to these characters that I found myself willing them on.. hoping they'd see what's right in front of them, how good and perfect they are for each other . I must admit, I often found myself yelling at Wrath that he's an idiot for whatever he did to Beth this time to screw up their relationship! I could quite happily stay in the world J.R Ward has created for hours on end...in fact I did...I read Dark Lover all in one sitting, completely forgot all about work and anything else I'd meant to do that day. It all became unimportant compared to my longing to know how Dark Lover turned out for Beth and Wrath. It was a decision I never regretted. Even the other characters who weren't the focus were complexly described so we could have an insight into them as well. Got to say I love Zsadist, can imagine his story's going to be brilliant. I've always had a bit of a soft spot for those strong characters with tortured pasts. The scar on his face, soulless black eyes plus the warnings the other BDB members give about him really intrigue me...there's going to be a deep story behind it all, something that will be equally as amazing, if not better, if J.R. Ward keeps this calibre of writing throughout the series.
The two things I've heard people don't like about Dark Lover are the language and the sex scenes. Ok well, the 'bad' language comes with the territory of these Brothers being the type of 'look at me the wrong way and I'll break you in two' men that they are so I have no problem with it. And the sex scenes were not so often as they detract from the book, just enough so that they add another dimension to Wrath and Beth's relationship, they're not too long and drawn out either, so again, this is not something I had a problem with.
LOVE IT LOVE IT LOVE IT! Definitely one of the best books I own. If you love paranormal romance you have to read this!
My Rating: 5/5