21 April 2013

J.R. Ward's - Dark Lover (Black Dagger Brotherhood Book 1) Review

A golden goldie...!

I'm taking part in the Goodreads group SOS: Serious Overload of Series 'Black Dagger Brotherhood Series Read'. It's basically a challenge to read or re-read J.R.Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series in prep for the 2013 release of Lover At Last.

What they say: In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.

The only purebred vampire left on earth, 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-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams.

What I say: I LOVED this book and I'm already reading book 2. I cannot believe that I'm years behind in this series! I guess the good thing is that now I have the entire series to read as soon as I like.

Told from the POV of many (if not most) of the characters, Dark Lover introduces the world of The Black Dagger Brotherhood. It is very different from so many of the other vampire books out there. Importantly the vampires drink mainly from other vampires to survive.

The brothers, lead by the reluctant vampire king Wrath (yeah he totally suits his name) are a bad ass group of vampire warriors who defend their world from the evil 'lessers'. Lessers are magically altered former humans, who are soulless and charged with killing vampires, in particular the brotherhood.

I loved the book because we got to hear from the perspective of many of the brothers, not just Wrath and Beth. On to Wrath. He's 6 feet 6 inches of human hating, vampire hotness. Wrath has a vulnerable side, which the half human girl (or woman), Beth uncovers.

Journalist Beth is unaware that anything supernatural exists, let alone that she's a vampire-human hybrid. She's spent 25 years as a human before going through the change (I've gotta admit that I kept thinking of menapose here). I really liked Beth's character because she's an awesome mix of spunky and determined, yet vulnerable and caring. The scene with Rhage was very sweet and I like her relationship with the brothers (even the scarily damaged Zsadist).

Beth and Wrath are smoking hot together, and oh boy there's definitely sex in this book! J.R.Ward incorporates the sexiness into scenes in a way which really works, and never feels forced. I won't say too much more because I noticed on Goodreads that a lot of people are just discovering this series like me. I will say that I loved Rhage (one of the brothers) and Butch (a human cop friend of Beth's).

This is a great fantasy book that I think even those who don't usually enjoy fantasy will enjoy!

5 Stars in my Sky! (Yep I loved it that much)!

My fav non-spoilery quotes:
  • Welcome to the wonderful world of jealousy, he thought. For the price of admission, you get a splitting headache, a nearly irresistible urge to commit murder, and an inferiority complex…Yippee.
  • The college turks were still fresh out of school and aching to compete in the Stupid Olympics.
  • As far as he was concerned, there were only two good positions for a human. A female on her back. And a male facedown and not breathing.
  • She couldn't quite recall how he'd come into her apartment. Or what he'd said to her. But everything they'd done horizontally was vivid as hell.
  • Something had set him off. Big-time. Perfect date material, she thought. A vampire with the social equivalent of road rage.
This review is also online at Goodreads!

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