Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Dark Lover by J. R. Ward

"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 pure-bred 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 much usher the beautiful female into the world of the undead . . .

Racked by a restlessness in her body that wasn't there before, Beth Randall is helpless against the dangerously sexy man who comes to her at night with shadows in his eyes. His tales of brotherhood and blood frighten her. But his touch ignites a dawning hunger that threatens to consume them both . . ."

I tend not to read much paranormal romance preferring urban fantasy with romantic subplots, for the same reason I rarely read any romance books, I get bored with them. I prefer more action, though I'm always happier when there is a romantic plot as well, just not when it's the whole plot. But the Black Dagger Brotherhood series was recommended to me by a good friend so I decided to give it a shot. Really, really glad I did!! I completely fell in love with J.R. Ward's world and her Brothers. The books are written in third person, from several different points of view. It flows well and I like getting to see the extensive world created here, through different angles. From inside the Brotherhood, from the human POV, and from the lessers. It also means we get to see the characters through different eyes, which helps give them more depth by showing how they're perceived by different people. And I also really like the vampire lore that exists here.

The Brothers themselves are intense. They're all unique, with different skills and different issues, but all warriors who are completely loyal to each other, and to their duty, keeping the rest of the vampire population alive by destroying the lessers, who are soulless immortal killers. Although we see more of Wrath than any of the other Brothers in this book (a given as it's Wrath's story) we see hints as to the backgrounds and future stories for the rest of them. Which made me fall in love with pretty much all of them over the course of the book!

Wrath's story is intense and violent. He's a warrior through and through and not known as the nicest guy around. But at the same time, it's touching and sweet and I fell in love with him very quickly. Beth is smart and tough, and while there is the 'girl meets bad boy and instantly falls in love' aspect, it isn't nearly that straight forward. There is a lot more to the plot and the characters, both main and side, are very 3D making even the predictable parts that much more enjoyable because you care about the characters, they're very much alive. The ongoing battle between the Brothers and the lessers is another aspect to the story, adding to it but not taking center stage. Its not without it's place, it just doesn't story the love story being the focus. But the main story is the Brothers. Their pasts, their future, and what they're fighting for. But as it turns out, the lessers aren't the only danger they face.

I love Wrath and Beth's story, they play off each other so well. It's a fantastically written and gripping book which I had a very, very hard time putting down. It left me wanting a whole lot more of the Brothers and I can't wait to read the rest of the series that's currently out!! 9/10

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