Monday, July 23, 2007

J.R. Ward 'Dark Lover'

I intended to only review books published in 2007 on my blog, since there are a lot of review sites out there with huge databases of older books. Well, since my readership pretty much consists of Anne and Stewart (oh I know you're lurking out there, Jean) I'm going to break that rule and throw one in for Anne about Vampires.

Also, it's my belief that to judge the usefulness of any review/er, you should know something about that person. So I'll say up front that I enjoy action films. I tend toward the female protagonist supernatural type, not so much the Die Hard type (although I really enjoyed Con Air with Nicolas Cage) but I come to them with different (ok, lower) expectations than I do when I see movies of other genres. I loved Underworld, was it silly? Of course!

That having been said, my ability to 'suspend need to snort out loud' when it comes to supernatural/paranormal books is pretty high. I haven't read a lot of the genre, so I'm still feeling out where I draw the 'this is a bad book/this is a good book' line. But there's a lot of material out there so I have a feeling it'll get pretty clear, pretty quick. (See Dark Seduction review)

I definitely enjoyed reading Dark Lover. I have to admit that my snort 'o meter went off a couple of times (The Black Dagger Brotherhood consists of Wrath, Vichous, Zsadist, Rhage, Phury, Torhment and Darius!!) But I genuinely liked Beth, she's not stupid, and thank goodness, when put next to a super alpha vampire hero, she doesn't need to prove she can fight harder than he can. Wrath is, well, a super alpha vampire hero with a little self loathing thrown in for good measure. The writing tends toward the colloquial "ya feel me?", the characters swear and they like loud rap music. The book is well paced, I liked the heroine and didn't laugh out loud at the hero, the secondary characters are decent, the sex is very steamy and of course you have simple, truly evil bad guys. For what it is, fun to read.

Paranormal Vampire Romance 2005: 4 out of 5 stars.


Anonymous said...

YES! A vampire romance novel! Finally!! I told you that a vampire protagonist would be way more considerate than a demon. It's their upbringing.

Thanks for indulging my random request to review a vampire romance. By the way, I think "Rhage" is a terrific name. What do you think of Rhage Tanaka Park? NICE.

I'd appreciate it if, for your next review, you could find a book about a 19th century Russian princess in love with a cyborg, that'd be great. Thanks!

Heloise said...

I'll be sure to Google that. Although I'm thinking if I keep fulfilling your every request I'm going to make you read one of these books someday!

Well, Pablo was number one on my list, but now Zsadist is my number two.

BTW, he was MUCH more considerate of his heroine. In the bonding ceremony, he gets her name tattooed into his back, Elizabeth no less, to show the world who he belongs to. Well, to show the other vampires anyway.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I'm too busy reading the seventh Harry Potter to pick up one of your excellent picks. But I'll get to them...

By the way, I tested Rob's theory re: page 169 and he's right. I couldn't believe what Harry and Dobby the house elf were doing--very steamy.

Heloise said...

Am I the only one not reading this book. Oh well this will allow me to get a jump on my romance reviewing competition. :)

O Nay said...

A well woven tale. Foremost, the story is interesting, it unfolds then wraps up nicely. The characters are fun, and if not all likable you want to find out what happens to them. These are key in books I read and enjoy. Now, I haven't read a romance novel since "Hollywood Wives" in the early 80's, but to me there wasn't alllll that much sex in it, but I respect the quality of the sex. I liked that it wasn't all over the place though and she doesn't get too distracted using so many terms for Wrath's manhood. She sticks with what works. The Brotherhood are all a hoot and well described. Nicely laid down for future iterations.

I will say that although I appreciate and accept J.R. Ward's interpretation of vampire lore I did have a HUGE problem with the comfortable domesticity that came in the latter 1/3 of the book between vampires. I just can't believe that a Vampiress would want or care for a "dream kitchen" and was finally getting it after being alive for 300 years or so. And what do these vampire women do all day (excuse me, night)? Why can't they be out battling and fighting eVell? In truth, I was schooled in the ways of Buffy but I think such a fun, contemporary novel should have more equality in the vampire sexes. The only other issue I take is the first 1/2 of this book, in fact the whole reason for these lovers to MEET/tussle/make up/fall-in-love is for Wrath to help Beth in her transition from human civilian into vampire everlasting. Why then does this narly process take, oh...say 3 hours?

But remember, I was schooled in Buffy so have all sorts of vampire ideas. I had fun reading this book and read it quickly and could not be disturbed whilst doing so. I did not think of anything else while reading and thought about it when I was not. These for me add up to a very good read and there is a fine chance I will read her next in the series! (and it had sex in it, so all the better)

Heloise said...

So on target, O nay. Although given the set-up for the ridiculous warriors (there are only 5 of these guys out of all the vampires still around) I could buy the women not fighting, BUT getting excited about the kitchen struck me as pretty silly.