Monday, June 20, 2011

Review: Lover Unleashed

Title: Lover Unleashed
Author: JR Ward
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood (#9)
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Payne, twin sister of Vishous, is cut from the same dark, warrior cloth as her brother: A fighter by nature, and a maverick when it comes to the traditional role of Chosen females, there is no place for her on the Far Side… and no role for her on the front lines of the war, either.

When she suffers a paralyzing injury, human surgeon Dr. Manuel Manello is called in to treat her as only he can- and he soon gets sucked into her dangerous, secret world. Although he never before believed in things that go bump in the night- like vampires- he finds himself more than willing to be seduced by the powerful female who marks both his body and his soul.

As the two find so much more than an erotic connection, the human and vampire worlds collide … just as a centuries old score catches up with Payne and puts both her love and her life in deadly jeopardy.

I LOVED Lover Unleashed. I devoured it, reading during my lunch breaks and into the night. But despite how much I enjoyed it, I’m still only giving it three stars. The other BDB books I’ve given three stars to have generally been because the main characters annoyed the heck out of me, but other characters and overall story arc redeemed it for me. In this case, there was so much going on that even the main romance felt like a side plot!

Manny and Payne didn’t feel like the centerpiece of the story. Compared to past couples they weren’t given that much page time, and at the end of the book their situation didn’t feel resolved. Maybe their story arc will continue into the next book- there seems to be a lot of that going on.

In a lot of ways, Lover Unleashed felt like a way to introduce future plots- Panye/Manny was just the excuse used to create the book for it. The reason I still liked it (besides being a die hard BDB fan) is that most of these plots weren’t boring. In a lot of past books there’s been endless filler about the inner workings of the Lesser Society, and a bunch of baby powdered undead white guys can only be so interesting. The Lessers have all but disappeared in Lover Unleashed, which for the time being I’m quite ok with.

There were a few things missing besides the Lessers though. Like where was Tohr? Isn’t the next book his? Even Qhuay, had a limited presence, was heavily lopsided, with the reader often in Quinn’s head, but Blay seeming to breeze on and off screen.

So all in all, Lover Unleashed gets a big thumbs up for fun, but two stars knocked off for missing pieces and heavy plot juggling.

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