Well, this is a bit outdated. I mean, Dark Lover was released back in 2005. It was the first in a series that is now 7 books deep. Why choose now to review it? For several reasons, actually:
1) I'm constantly talking Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series up to others; especially people who do not normally read paranormal stories. What better way to break them in? Anyway, my friends and coworkers who haven't already read the series always want to know why it's so special. Really, it would be so much easier to send them a link to a review than to gush on for an hour about why I love the series so much. Especially since that gushing usually just ends with me saying "I love Zsadist!" over and again.
2) I am interested in reviewing her current release, as well as her future books, but the anal part of me will not let me review books in a series out of order. Nope, just can't.
3) I love the book and kinda just want to review it. Yeah, 'nuff said.
Dark Lover by JR Ward
The rough streets of Caldwell, NY are home to more than just drug dealers and working girls. Deep in the shadows wages a centuries old war between Vampires and the Lessening Society, a group of soulless humans dedicated to their destruction. At the forefront of the war is the Black Dagger Brotherhood (BDB), a powerful group of 6 vampire warriors, bred and trained to be the defenders of their race. The leader of the group is Wrath, the last pureblood vampire in existence and reluctant king of the vampire race.
Vengeful as his name would suggest, Wrath carries the burden of being forced to watch his family's murder at the hands of the Lessening Society centuries ago. Wrath is content as a warrior and nothing more, until tragedy strikes and he finds himself keeping a promise to care for the halfblood daughter of a dear friend. It's a promise he's reluctant to keep, until he gets his first blurry glimpse of Beth Randall. He's immediately attracted to the spunky woman, determined to see her through her dangerous transition into the Vampire world, and maybe even take her as his queen. But the Lessening Society has other plans, and even if Beth manages to make it through her transition and the Lesser's tricks, will she return Wrath's feelings?
Dark Lover is more than just a romance novel covering the burgeoning relationship between its hero and heroine; it is the introduction to a world hidden deep within our own and a cast of rich characters who are everybit as real as the author putting them on the page. While Dark Lover tells Wrath and Beth's story as a romance is expected to, it also introduces the rest of the brothers who comprise the BDB, introducing their individual conflicts and subtly paving the way for each of the books to come.
Combining romantic themes with dramatic situations, erotic encounters, and dark humor, Dark Lover blurs the lines between paranormal romance, erotic fiction, and urban fantasy. Romance lovers will enjoy the fast pace, sexual tension, and happily-for-now ending that includes not only Wrath and Beth as a couple, but as leaders for their race. Erotica fans will enjoy the sexual heat. Reading about these two is like standing too close to a bonfire; you're bound to be scorched . Ms. Ward is certainly a master of crafting sex scenes that are hotter than hell. It's a talent she only inproves upon throughout the series. Finally, paranormal and urban fantasy fans will be blown away by the depth of the world Ward has created.
While the series continues to build, becoming more vibrant and compelling with each new edition, this is the story that started it all. Dark Lover is a great read. Pick it up. I'll be surprised if you can put it down before traveling the distance between the covers.
Until next time,