Have you ever picked up a book expecting to not to like it or with very little expectations? That is what this book was for me. The last book I read by J.R. Ward was Lover Enshrined and I vowed at the end of that book that I would never read another book by her (see the post Heather has been challenged to find out why and why I finally read this book).
From the moment I began to read LOVER UNLEASHED I was sucked right back into the world of the Black Dagger Brotherhood as if I had never left. I didn’t feel lost at not having read LOVER AVENGED or LOVER MINE. In fact I said out loud “Damn I have missed you guys,” when I was a couple of chapters in which earned me strange look from Mike.
There is a lot more than just Payne and Manny in this book so I am going to take it character by character.
Payne is Vishous twin sister, and he is absolutely torn up that he never knew about her, when his lovely mother The Scribe Virgin revealed herself to him in his book she never once mentioned his sister, so not only does he have a burning desire to kill her because of what she did or rather didn’t do when he was a child, but now to find out that he had a twin she kept from him. He is also livid over the fact that she is paralyzed and there is nothing he can do for her. All of this sends him over the edge. In the end though, because of the love of his shellan Jane, and his best friend Butch he finally begins to heal.
The scene where he has his breakthrough/meltdown is one of the absolute best scenes in the book as far as I am concerned. Ward really tapped into the mind of someone that suffered the absolute worst kind of abuse one can have and comes out on the other side. I am not going to tell you what happens but know that it is heart wrenching and worth reading.
Q (I can never remember how to spell his name) was an interesting read for me. The last time I saw him he had just had his father try and have him killed and lost his entire family to the Lessers, and was made JM’s protector. I missed all the drama between him and Blay which I was told was pretty intense. Q has finally reached his rock bottom and decides to own his shit, in fact I think that the best line of the book was his “He had to own his shit, even if it made him hate himself to his core..” I am now interested in how he is going to turn out. He does a lot of admitting things in this book, a lot of growing up I think.
Payne, has a lot of anger towards her mother because of V, but she was also raised as a Chosen so she has that innocence going as well. She is a very complex character and I have to say that in creating a twin for V she is the perfect one. It is my experience with twins (figure as a mom of twins I know just a bit about them) that they are two halves of the same whole, and that is what these two were for me. Her relationship with Manny is a really sweet one, he sees both sides of her, the innocent Chosen side and also the Warrior side.
Manny is a one of those characters that I felt bad for in V’s book, because it felt like he got the raw end of the deal and was a really good guy. Jane’s death rocked his world and her re-entry into his world almost destroys him. When he finds himself in a position of being able to do what he does best and that is to put people back together it is almost like he has come home. It really isn’t that simple and there are some major things that he has to go through but in the end he decides it was all worth it.
Butch….the mystery of who his father is, is revealed.
Xcor is the new guy in town, he has a mission and a purpose. His band of men are completely loyal to him and they all have a major hard on for their King Wrath and his Brothers. It will be interesting to see what develops with him, and his men.
This book felt to me like it was a breather book setting things in motion for the next phase of the series. There was no major conflict other than personal issues that needed to be dealt with and were, at least none that I noticed.
Overall I really enjoyed the book, and have added her back onto my auto-buy list. So thank you Katie and Kayleigh for having me read this book.
This is review is also posted on my website www.thebookreadinggals.com