Dark Lover by J. R. Ward

JRWard-Dark LoverI’ve had Dark Lover, actually nearly the entire Black Dagger Brotherhood series, sitting on my shelf for years, just waiting to be read. I finally sat down to read it now for the BDB Read-Along and let me tell you, I am so kicking myself for not reading this series when I first got it. It was amazing!

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.The only purebred vampire left on earth, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But, when one of his most trusted fighters is killed-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams.

As it is the first book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, I expected Dark Lover to have more world-building than plot or even romance since that’s what usually happens at the beginning of a series. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Yeah, there was world-building, but the plot never suffered because of it and the romance between Wrath and Beth was explosive.

The plot was fast-paced and action packed. It jumped around with multiple points of view which only helped with the world-building, by giving a broader picture without being boring. There were a couple of parts that were just a little too coincidental for me, but overall the plot worked well.

I wouldn’t say that Beth was a strong heroine but she wasn’t a wallflower. She never let Wrath dictate her life and she never stupidly put herself in danger. I loved how Wrath was both physically impaired and emotionally scared. He blamed himself for not being able to save his parents when they were murdered and refused to take his place as king of the vampires because he felt so inadequate. Not only that but Wrath was almost completely blind. That didn’t stop him from being a deadly warrior.

There was a strong bond between the brothers that was easily felt/seen. I especially loved how modern they all were, with their love of rap and using slang. Typically with vampires who are a few hundred years old, they don’t keep up with the current culture. The Black Dagger Brotherhood does, and that was just another unique twist on vampires that Ward created in her new world.

Dark Lover was a wonderfully dark, erotic, with little flashes of humor and a whole lot of badass, alpha males. I can’t believe I waited this long to read it. Anyone who hasn’t read it absolutely should. (That goes for you too, Nicole! I know you don’t want to read this series but I think you’d love it.)

Black Dagger Brotherhood Read-a-longRead Order:
Dark Lover
Lover Eternal
Lover Awakened
Lover Revealed
Lover Unbound
Lover Enshrined
Lover Avenged
Lover Mine
Lover Unleashed
Lover Reborn (March 2012)

Want to join Dark Faerie Tales and I in our discussions about the Black Dagger Brotherhood? We’ll be discussing Lover Eternal next week here on LE and I hope to see everyone stop by. If you haven’t already, we started the discussion with Dark Lover over at Dark Faerie Tales, you should check it out. With either discussion, please let us know if you think we’ve missed something. I always find it interesting to see what parts of stories that others zero in on that I’ve either glossed over or have missed entirely.

About Casey 203 Articles
Casey is the founder of Heart Full of Ink, Director at Reading Until Dawn Con, and a full time cheese addict. She's been ranting and reviewing for Literary Escapism since 2010, and is part of the trio #3Bloggers1Series podcast. When she's not reading, looking for new books, or stalking authors online (waiting for more books), she can be found binge watching Netflix. But really, her life is all about DEM BOOKS!


  1. I love this series so much. It is in my top five favorite series. J R Ward is one of nicest authors that I have ever meet.

  2. It’s one of my favorite series, I love the Brothers!
    And yes, you should kick yourself for not reading this series earlier, especially if you had them on your shelf.

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