Review: Lover Awakened by J. R. Ward

Lover Awakened by J. R. Ward

Title: Lover Awakened (The Black Dagger Brotherhood, 3)
Author: J. R. Ward
Genre: Erotica, Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Piatkus (5th August 2010)

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly war raging between vampires and their slayers. And their exists a secret band of brothers like no other – six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Of these, Zsadist is the most terrifying member of the BLACK DAGGER BROTHERHOOD.

A former blood slave, the vampire Zsadist still bears the scars from a past filled with suffering and humiliation. Renowned for his unquenchable fury and sinister deeds, he is a savage, feared by humans and vampires alike. Anger is his only companion, and terror is his only passion – until he rescues a beautiful aristocrat from the evil Lessening Society.

Bella is instantly entranced by the seething power Zsadist possesses. But even as their desire for one another begins to overtake them both, Zsadist’s thirst for vengeance against Bella’s tormentors drives him to the brink of madness. Now, Bella must help her lover overcome the wounds of his tortured past, and find a future with her . . .

Rating: *** (3 stars)

LOVE AWAKENED is the third book in J. R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood novels. The story follows Zsadist and Bella, who was involved in a storyline in the previous book. LOVER AWAKEND continues this story, answering the questions readers are left with at the end of LOVER ETERNAL.

As in the previous two books Ward has split the narrative of the novel. This time we get to hear Zsadist and Bella’s stories, as well as gain some insight into other characters in the book including Zsadit’s twin Phury and the mysterious lesser Mr O – a man with a plan, it seems.

I really enjoyed all the different plot threads that Ward wove together in this book, and I think having the multiple narratives worked – especially the sections that focused on the lesser, as I think it gave some interesting insight into what it is to be a lesser.

I liked the fact that this book touches upon the idea of violation of self, and on the whole I think Ward deals well with the subject. However, it did make me a little uncomfortable the implication that sex with the right person makes everything better – it makes you able to deal with the violation you had to deal with and turns you into a normal person apparently. That being said, Ward does touch upon different forms of violation of self and I think that, that was kind of a good thing to do within the paranormal romance genre – too often things are just brushed aside.

I think LOVER AWAKENED is a good, enjoyable read and if you have enjoyed the Black Dagger Brotherhood so far, then you will almost certainly enjoy this addition to the series.

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