Author: J.R. Ward
Info: Website | Facebook
Release Date: March 29th, 2011
Others in the Series: Dark Lover, Lover Eternal, Lover Awakened, Lover Revealed, Lover Unbound, Lover Awakened, Lover Enshrined, & Lover Mine
Age Group: Adult
Payne, twin sister of the Black Dagger Brother Vishous, suffers a devastating injury, and brilliant human surgeon Manuel Manello is called in to save her. Their attraction is instant, and as powerful as it is dangerous. But as human and vampire worlds collide, a centuries- old score catches up with Payne and puts both her love and her life in jeopardy.
I love this series, I really do. I pretty much ate up the majority of it last year and it was my Best Series of 2012 pick, but something about this book set my teeth on edge. Maybe I just miss the fact that this story didn't focus on the main guys anymore or maybe it was just how all over the place I felt. I know that Ward is trying to set up the next book, but I think she did it just a little too much this time and not giving us, the readers, time to know Manny and Payne.
While the romance was just as hot and steamy, and Manny proved to be just the type of man that would be right for Payne, I did feel like there was too much sex. I would have liked them to connect in another way (and for maybe Manny not to have so many turn on moments - I get it, she's hot, she gets your you-know-what going, but do you have to keep telling us?!). And I get there's a lot of drama in Qhuinn and Blay's life, but we still have another book between this one and them! Maybe that's why I was a little unhappy. Tohr was completely overlooked, even though his book was next and I wouldn't be surprised if I read that book to find out that it was just another bridge book to Qhuinn and Blay, because that's what I feel like this book was, just a bridge book.
Despite my laundry list of problems with this book, I did like it. It took me a little longer than the rest of the books to read (we're talking days instead of hours) I think that Manny and Payne was a little surprising but a good pairing. I wish that Manny had been brought up a few books before (the last we heard of him was in V's book) but like I said I think that Ward is focusing way too much on Qhuinn and Blay.
Not to mention this series is getting really complicated. It feels like Ward has gone away from this war with the Lessers to this war with each other. If the Lessers don't end up killing them, they'll end up killing each other with all the drama that goes on. How many attempts on Wrath's life have there been already? Not to mention the fact that the Lessers were hardly mentioned except for a handful of fighting scenes...this really has turned away from what the first few books introduced me to.
And then there's a new enemy. I didn't like the way things went down between Xcor and Payne. This is a little spoiler, but for a man to spend so many centuries looking for a person and to have things end the way they did between the two, well, can I just say that it was a real let down.
Overall, there wasn't a lot of fighting going on. Just a lot of internal emotions to get resolved. We got way more of V than we did in his book, which surprised me. And am I the only one who was really confused about what was going on with Jose and his partner? According to other reviews I read it was setting up for her Fallen Angels book (which I am horribly behind on) but I just felt like that was something that could have been taken out. Almost like filler pages, because if this was for the Fallen Angels book why couldn't she just leave it on her Fallen Angels book? I'm sorry, Ward, but we know that the BDB and the FA series will cross, they take place in the same city for Goodness sake!
And last, I understand how a long and complicated series like this things tend to get...mistaken. I read from an interview Ward did that she has made mistakes as the series goes on, but in this book I felt like her editor was not paying too much attention to what was going on. If I didn't love this series so much I probably would have taken a red pen and corrected everything and then my book wouldn't look so pretty. There were things that she mentioned in passed books that she brought back, only she completely disagreed with herself or something. The big one that I noticed is that in one book she mentioned that Qhuinn was color blind, yet he could see color just fine in this book. And there were other things like that that she did that had me stopping and thinking, "Wait, that's not what you said in (insert book title here). What the heck are you doing?"
I'm not going to give this book a five, because of the mess I just mentioned above. I should be giving this book a two or even a one for everything that was going on, but I can't argue with her writing style and the way she's able to keep the readers attention. And somehow through this mess she's able to still make the reader care about these characters and what's going on.
I know she said that she would keep writing this series as long as they were to continue to sell, and I know that she has a lot of books coming up, and I am very excited for them all, I just hope that for these future books she and/or her editor look through them with a fine comb. Even write up a journal with what's been going on or something, because if she continues like this the books would probably fall to pieces and lose their readership.
I do wish that the women would start playing a bigger part. I'm glad that there are some women that are fighting and I'm glad that Ward mentions them, but I do wish that they would become a bigger part of the story and that they say things. I think Ehlena was mentioned way too much, yet she never said a word. That just got me a little upset.
And this review is much longer than I expected it to be, but I would just keep aware for all the BDB fan's out there who haven't gotten to this book yet: be prepared. Things won't be as good as the first eight books or even the first five, which were my absolute favorite!
Read, but be cautious about what will be found.