The first novel of J. R. Ward's New York Times best-selling Black Dagger Brotherhood series features a unique take on vampire lore and heavy doses of sensuality....
Paradise, blooded daughter of the king's first advisor, is ready to break free from the restrictive life of an aristocratic female....
Redemption isn't a word Jim Heron knows much about - his specialty is revenge, and to him, sin is all relative. But everything changes when he becomes a fallen angel....
For generations the Bradford family has worn the mantle of kings of the bourbon capital of the world. Their sustained wealth has afforded them prestige and privilege....
Savannah Dupree is a freshman studying at Boston University on a full scholarship. But Savannah possesses something even more remarkable than a quick mind....
Raven Black hunts evildoers for fun, but her vigilante justice isn't the only reason she's hiding from the law. Half vampire, half mage, she's spent years living as a rogue to stay alive....
Number-one New York Times best-selling author J.R. Ward's thrilling new novel in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series.
Payne, twin sister of Vishous, is cut from the same dark, seductive cloth as her brother. Imprisoned for eons by their mother, the Scribe Virgin, she finally frees herself - only to face a devastating injury.
Manuel Manello, M.D., is drafted by the Brotherhood to save her as only he can - but when the human surgeon and the vampire warrior meet, their two worlds collide in the face of their undeniable passion. With so much working against them, can love prove stronger than the birthright and the biology that separates them?
This book was good but not as emotionally satisfying as some of the others. Payne was as advertised. She had that mix of innocence and warrior which is pretty much what I expected from her. Manny was pretty much what I expected too. Loner who doesn't know he's missing anything out of life but suddenly finds his shellan and "Mine." It was a little too quick and I think that's the problem. The pacing on this book is off. The storyline didn't really have time to develop in the week or so the book covers.
Payne's hurt, Manny gives her sexual healing, Manny can't deal with the vampires and Payne’s impact on him for like six hours, Payne's kidnapped and rescues herself in one night, Manny finds out he's Butch's half-brother and Manny/Payne have sex, the end. Okay, hard to get invested in that storyline. True.
The best part of the book was V/Butch/Jane. Poor Marissa is barely mentioned except to nod approvingly as Butch goes off to fix V. The emotional dynamic between V/Butch and to some extent Jane is just terrific. Love how Butch knew what to do to help. V and Jane's resolution was satisfying. Love the bond and the humor between them all.
Not enough Blay/Quinn. Ward keeps teasing her readers with this couple. If she continues to tease her readers with will they/won't they for too long with no payoff, nothing she writes is going to be enough to satisfy the people who are invested in the m/m couple. She's already said she can't sell a whole book on these two because her readership won't support it so get on with the novella and give fans of Blay/Quinn a break.
The new guys are interesting. Definitely a hook for future books. Not enough of the other brothers. No Rhage humor, no Phury/Zadist to speak of. The shellans must all be on vacation because I don't remember seeing/hearing anything about them.
Overall a decent read but not one I want to listen too over and over except for the Butch/V parts.
19 of 20 people found this review helpful
This is not the best in the series. If you are a fan of the series and loved Phury's installment this is the book for you. This one starts off slow and I can usually deal with that out of Ward. It's a very tedious listen in the beginning.
I am kind of mad at Ward on this one. I gave it a three because for the dedicated fan you can't miss this installment. There is a ton of new information and interesting new characters you might come to love or hate. Overall, it is a must listen. The romance between Payne and Manny is just a convenient backdrop for new and old questions. Just like Phury's installment is a buildup to Lover Mine.
I hope Ward doesn't make us wait another year before the next installment arrives. She's going somewhere with some of the old and new characters and I am definitely on board with this series. However, if you are expecting an amazing romance between Payne and Manny it just doesn't happen in this book. I would actually characterize this as V and Jane: Part II.
As usual, Jim Frangione does an outstanding job with the narration. So there you have it. A must listen for diehard fans. If this is your first listen of Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series start with another installment.
16 of 18 people found this review helpful
Angie in Jamestown, TN
First, let me say that I purchased the book 2 hours after it became available. There had already been 10 5 stars ratings left..on a 19 hour book. Yah, fishy...fans just hiking up the book's rating without listening to it first.
Onto the book **Slight Spoilers may be ahead** It's my least favorite of the series. I LOVE the Brotherhood! I have listened to all of the previous books in one sitting. This one though, took me 3 days to finish.
Is this a rewrite of V's story? Haven't we done the V & Jane thing? Haven't we done the V & Butch thing? And haven't we done the half breed thing? Where's the original ideas? Where's Manny and Payne's courtship? The courtship was rushed, predictable, weak, and I just ended up not caring. It would have actually been better if one of them had been killed off....much more interesting.
It seems like when the book was finished, Ward remembered Quinn & Blay and went back and through a few rewrote pages about them from previous books. Like another reviewer stated....Quinn won't come out of the closet, blah blah blah.
I noticed a few inconsistencies, like when V told Wrath that Payne had recovered and Wrath was excited and surprised. Hadn't Payne just been in there before, asking Wrath if she could leave with Manny? Yah Wrath is blind, but he would have known if she was bed ridden or not when she walked in his door.
The whole showdown between Payne and Xcor.....was that it? "You killed my father" "No I didn't" "Oh, okay." Really?
I still love the Brotherhood! I love hearing a few snippets here and there about previous characters, but when a new book comes out, it should be about the new couple, not 75% the same stuff from previous books. I'll continue with the series, because the new characters that Ward introduced seem appealing, which unfortunately for you who have not listened to this book, makes this installment and necessity for character background.
Once again, Jim Frangione does a YUMMY performance!!! LOVE HIM!
14 of 16 people found this review helpful
I love this series. I can't wait for the next installment. I would've given this book a five star but I did not like the ending at all. Sooo left hanging. Too many questions, what is going on with Quinn and Lela and Quinn and Blaye? What's the deal with Butch and Manny? When is the Virgin Scribe gonna act like a god and help her people with these dang Lessors and what the heck is with Score? Too much to find out about to wait so long. Get those finger to moving Ms. Ward!
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
If you are a fan of the BDB series, brace yourself, because the new installment is out. Unfortunately, Lover Unleashed leaves much to be desired. At best, this book is unfocused. Lover Unleashed spans three relationships: Vishous/Jane, Qhuinn/Blaylock and Manny/Payne. In addition to trying to develop three relationships, the book also introduces a new brotherhood enemy. In the end, there is just too much going on to fully explore any of the storylines. This results in a book that serves as more of a transition between stories than a story itself.
11 of 13 people found this review helpful
Where did J R Wards' in depth story and character development go? I wanted to feel vested in the characters of this story, but found that impossible with all of the story lines she "unleashed". Maybe a better title might have been Lover Overlooked!
7 of 8 people found this review helpful
I am so glad to see that I am not the only one who felt this book was a bit of a let down. I have "read" all the BDB books and have recommended them to others as I LOVE the series. This book left me feeling unsatisfied somehow and after waiting on pins and needles for the next installment, I needed more. I agree, it was Jane and Vishous part II with a little Butch thrown in. At times, I forgot this was Payne's story. For the die-hard BDB fan, you will read it as you NEED to know what is going to happen next. If you are new to the series, start with an earlier book... Hopefully, we will not have to wait as long for the next book. As I said earlier, I LOVE this series!!!
6 of 7 people found this review helpful
Any additional comments?
Normally around the 8th book of a series there is a decline in the quality of the story... Not so for Black Dagger Brotherhood. The series took a giant leap forward in the previous book, Lover Mine, and continues the momentum in this installment. I don't do plot summaries in my reviews so I will just say: "Girl Power!" "Humans!!" "Evil Vampires?" "Lessers SUCK!"
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
I have to agree with the others that this installment is too much like others in the series. Unfortunately, I'm adding J.R. Ward to the same "do not read" list that Anita Hamilton and Chairlanne Harris occupy. The first books in all the series were great, but as the series continued, they've lost their steam.
8 of 10 people found this review helpful
I absolutely loooved the other books. This one...not so much. I had to hear that same old crap about Quin and Blay and Vishous and.... Wait a minute. It was supposed to be Paynes and Manello's book right? Wrong! Nothing against it but I really don't want to hear about someone struggling to come out of the closet. Nor did I believe why V had such anger management issues about somebody he knew all of.. what... 5 minutes. Probably my last book also. I thought the book left you with more questions and answers to other questions, I didn't want answered. J.R,Ward? Not happy. Not happy.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful