I was really looking forward to Rehvenge’s story because he was a scary badass and I wanted to see him fall to his knees over a woman. In other words, I was hoping that Lover Avenged by J. R. Ward would be just like of all the other books in the Black Dagger Brotherhood. Rehv did fall head over heels in love but there were certain aspects of the plot that kept me from loving Lover Avenged the way I loved the rest of the series.
Rehvenge has always kept his distance from the Brotherhood-even though his sister is married to a member, for he harbors a deadly secret that could make him a huge liability in their war against the lessers. As plots within and outside of the Brotherhood threaten to reveal the truth about Rehvenge, he turns to the only source of light in his darkening world, Ehlena, a vampire untouched by the corruption that has its hold on him-and the only thing standing between him and eternal destruction.
Rehv was the perfect blend of tall, dark, brooding loner that I love in a hero. His career choices, though, weren’t things I usually go for. He was a pimp and a drug dealer, using his club as a front for all of it. It was all part of his appeal because, honestly, how often are pimps legitimately nice guys? The answer is never. But he wasn’t all bad. Because he had to keep his sympath-side a secret, Rehv was forced to do things he never would have done otherwise: he had to pay the Princess of the symphath colony $250,000 worth of rubies and the use of his body on the first Tuesday of every month. That’s why, even though he’s so tough on the exterior, he’s the nicest pimp ever.
Ehlena was that typical soft, sweet, putting-everyone’s-needs-before-her-own heroine found in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series. She didn’t annoy me, but she wasn’t a heroine that I could really get behind. She was so bland and so typical that she basically faded out of my mind when she wasn’t in the spotlight. But watching Rehv fall in love with her was sweet and adorable. They’ll never be one of my favorite couples (mainly because I forget about Ehlena) but they were cute in Lover Avenged.
The love story between Rehvenge and Ehlena was seriously overshadowed by both Wrath and John Matthew. As much as I love John Matthew and Wrath, it annoyed the crap out of me. I wanted to see more of Rehv and Ehlena falling in love. Instead, Wrath had a midlife crisis and John Matthew was setting the stage for his upcoming book, Lover Mine. There wasn’t as much fighting in Lover Avenged, mostly because Rehv, Wrath and John were all going through their problems. Not that Lover Avenged was angsty, it was just more emotional. Yeah, they were all badass men, but sometimes they were worse than teenage girls.
Despite the lack of fighting, there was still action. Lash, a former student of the Brotherhood, has taken over the lessers and is taking them in a new direction: selling drugs. Of course, that didn’t stop the lessers from fighting with the Brotherhood, they just fought less often. There were also assassination plots to take out Wrath and Rehv. While that added something to the plot, Lover Avenged had no where near the same amount of rush to get to the end of the story, as the other books in the series did.
Rehv and Ehlena’s story was everything I expected in Lover Avenged. I wasn’t as happy with the overall story because John Matthew and Wrath took up so much time. Yes, I do love those two characters but they took away from Rehv’s spotlight. Plus the lack of fighting kept the plot from being oh-my-god-can’t-stop-reading-need-more-NOW! In other words, Lover Avenged was cute but not the best it could have been.
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