- Title: Lover Eternal
- Author: JR Ward
- Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood #2
- Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance
- Category: Vampires
- Website: www.JRWard.com
- Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble
Lover Eternal is the second book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood Series. If you would like to read my review of book one, click here: Dark Lover.
Summary: Mary Luce is a human who is dying of cancer. She volunteers at a suicide hotline center as a way to cope with her illness by helping others survive. While working at the center, she meets a young man named John Matthew who is unable to speak, but seems to feel comforted by her voice and company.
While spending time with John and Mary, Mary’s neighbor Bella (who unbeknownst to her is a vampire) recognizes John as a male pre-turn vamp who doesn’t have a clue what he is going to become one day. She decides to introduce him to the Brotherhood because she knows he will need help during his coming transition if he is going to survive the change. Since Mary is the only one who knows sigh language and can communicate with John, she accompanies Bella and John to see the Brotherhood. This begins Mary’s connection with Rhage and the brotherhood.
Rhage is unique in the Brotherhood because he carries a curse within his body. The curse makes him turn into a dragon-like animal when he loses control of his emotions. The beast is terrifying and is capable of eating lessers (and people) in a couple of gulps – yummmmmy. Even his brothers are afraid of him when he is in this form.
The challenge with their love story is that Rhage is afraid of turning into the beast while with Mary, so he pushes her away physically. In turn, Mary is afraid of letting Rhage get too attached to her while she is so sick, so she pushes him away emotionally. And the big question remains… even if they can find a way to open up to each other fully, will it even matter once Mary’s mortality comes calling?
Review: I was a little less engaged in this book than I was in the previous, and I think the reason was because their relationship made me feel truly depressed in some parts. The depression was palpable. It’s one thing to read about someone who dies suddenly of a violent act (almost expected in series like this one), and something entirely different to read about the slow progressive demise of a character from cancer. I’ve watched people go through this, so maybe it hit just a little too close to home for me. I actually found myself looking forward to the subplot sections.
With that said, I really love how strong the subplots are in this series. While there is the obvious primary love story, the subplots are intense and just as exciting as the main story. This book introduces the mystery of John Matthew and his origins. We also meet Bella, who will most surely have a story in a future book. Then, there are also feelings between Marissa and Butch that are slowly developing. And lastly, we always get the opportunity to read from the point of view of Mr X, the primary lesser. I can’t recall another book series that did such a fantastic job developing the subplots.
I highly recommend this series to fans of Paranormal romance and Paranormal thrillers. This is definitely an adult series due to sexual content and violence.