Dark Lover by J. R. Ward is the first book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series of novels. It is also notable as my first and last Black Dagger Brotherhood book. Within this last decade I have developed a taste for vampire fiction however books like Dark Lover have put me on the verge of breaking up with it. You know, like Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin, sometimes relationships were good while they lasted but are not meant to be for the long run. Vampire fiction and I are having a “conscious uncoupling” and I only hope that you respect our privacy during this difficult time.
Dark Lover introduces the brothers of the brotherhood in all of their vampire bada$$ glory and the biggest and baddest is Wrath who is a King of some sort of the vampiring community. He is blind but covers for it well since it doesn’t slow down his fighting which is important for a vampire warrior. A friend, before being murdered, asks a favor from Wrath which involves the friend’s daughter which Wrath now can’t say no to (the daughter has been raised in the foster care system and does not know her birth father was alive…or is a vampire…but now it doesn’t matter because he’s a dead vampire…wait, bonus, he left her everything!).
In this bloodsucking universe vampires go through a change when they are in their twenties – some live through it and some don’t. New vampires, especially people who are unaware that they are going to morph into vampires, need someone to walk and talk them through it. To make a long story shorter but still comically predictable, Wrath and his friend’s daughter “do the deed” upon first meeting – boom, chaka, wa-wa. Listen, what this novel lacks in subtle character definition it makes up in spades with the boom, chaka, wa-wa. Chances are if you are a Fifty Shades of Grey girl this series of novels might be up your bad boy alley. As for me, I am not much of a romance fan and often find literary descriptions of the sex act a libido killer (probably because I’m laughing too hard about the creative thesaurus searched words used to described a man’s throbbing Uncle Fester).
What The Black Dagger Brotherhood books do have going for them is that they each center around a brotherhood member exercising his member (scratch that) finding his significant other of whom he will be strictly monogamous with for the rest of his eternal life. There was a side story of a cop who falls into the brotherhood which was sort of interesting but not enticing enough for me to pick up book number 2, Love Eternal, even though it is literally right in front of me and I am looking for something new to read.
I do not recommend Dark Lover unless you already know you like the various genres this book includes; vampires, romance, lots of descriptions of what for the characters was mind blowing sex but for me felt as enticing as being on a blind date with a man with a flatulence problem.