When I read Casey’s review for Lover Unleashed by J.R.Ward, I wondered if I could skip this one and not miss anything. Her review isn’t negative at all, in fact she says she loved it, she just had a few issues with it and they happen to be ones I like avoiding. I like Payne, I like Manny but I didn’t want to watch them whine for half the book. I wanted the action and all that’s amazing with this series, know what I mean? Then I thought, I’d be a crappy fan if I skipped this book without giving it a chance. While I totally agree with Casey, I’m glad I gave Unleashed a shot anyway. It shouldn’t be skipped, ya’all.
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.
Yes, there is a lot of whining between Payne and Manny, and V also does his own fair share of it too. There were moments where I was wishing Casey were next door so we could discuss how babyish they were all being. The thing is though, their whining is completely understandable when you break it down, albeit a bit annoying at times. Payne has been a prisoner all her life, by her own mother and now she’s a prisoner in a hospital bed. V discovers he has a sister, who he can’t heal, his relationship with Jane is faltering, and so he goes a bit berserk because he has never been able to handle his emotions. Manny is being torn in and out of his world, having his mind wiped clean many times, and pining over woman he can’t be sure exists in reality or in his dreams. I think because these characters are so strong and basically immortal, we know they can do better that we get aggravated when they don’t. So on one hand, the whining and pining was ‘OMG suck it up for the love of all things holy’ annoying at times but on the other hand, it was also totally plausible given the circumstances.
Beyond the whining luckily, was a killer story which as usual for Ward, had many things going on. The lessers weren’t the bad guy this go round, but they do show up and do their ‘thing’. –POSSIBLE SPOILER-The bad guy was after the humans and totally insane I have to add. The introduction of the Band of Bastards was pretty nifty and I’m hoping for lots of destruction from these boys…am I a bad person for wanting this? We see Blay and Qhuinn dancing around each other some more, which OMG can they just do it and get it over with?! I want them together so we can move on, cause that was worse to read than Payne, Manny or V and their issues. It tore at my heart, man. Oh and we even get to see Butch’s replacement on the force, which tells me that this guy is probably going to make an appearance somewhere down the line. Once again so much was going on with each sub plot that I was disappointed when the POV changed. I love how Ward twists everything together to tell one story, but sometimes I feel cheated when I get so little of each story in one book. Then again, it’s what makes this series stand out for me. She keeps you on your toes wanting more. I love/hate her for this.
All in all, Lover Unleashed was a great read even with the whining of super strong characters and I’m glad I didn’t skip it; I would have missed so much if I had! There was plenty of romance, action, intrigue and personal drama to keep me engrossed from start to finish. So, note to self and for you dear readers, give a book a shot anyway no matter what the review said, you never know the ride it will take you on.
Father Mine: Zsadist and Bella’s Story (Inside Black Dagger Brotherhood:An Insider’s Guide)
Lover At Last
The King (2014)
Published: March 29th, 2011