- Title: Lover Reborn
- Author: JR Ward
- Series: Black Dagger Brotherhood #10
- Genre: Adult, Paranormal Romance
- Category: Vampires, Angels
- Length: 572 Pages
- Website: www.jrward.com
Summary: Tohrment is back among the Brothers, living in the compound and fighting along side the other warriors. He is surviving since the death of his bonded mate earlier in the series, but he is a shell of his former self. He can’t accept the thought of taking blood from another female, and without that nourishment, he continues to weaken in both body and mind. Fighting the lessers provides him with an outlet for his rage, and his recently rekindled relationship with his adoptive son, John Matthew, gives him the support of an emotional connection.
There is a new resident at the Brotherhood compound – Xhex’s mother, No’One. She had been living on the other side with the Chosen, but she has come to live at the compound in an attempt to get to know her estranged daughter. No’One had lived on Earth once before. During her previous life, she had been kidnapped and raped by a Sympath, resulting in her pregnancy. It was Tohrment and Darious who saved her then, and they stayed with her until Xhex was born. No’One killed herself after the birth because she was unable to live with the thought of bringing another Sympath into the world. Because vampires are not permitted into the Fade (heaven) when they have committed suicide, her spirit was reborn in the Chosen’s sanctuary as her former self.
Although they knew each other in the past when they were both kids, Tohrment is not interested in developing a friendship with No’One when she first re-enters his life. He was crushed by her suicide after caring for her throughout the pregnancy, and he hadn’t forgiven her for abandoning Xhex or leaving him with the responsibility of a newborn that was not his child. They had never dated and Tohr was already promised in marriage to his future wife at the time. But whether he likes it or not, No’One is the only female he can take blood from or talk to without making him feel like he is betraying his dead wife. No’One is terrified of men, so she certainly doesn’t want to be touched, pursued, or even looked at by any of them. She feels safe with Tohr because of their former friendship, and he feels safe with her because she only wants a platonic relationship.
Tohr’s life becomes much more complicated when Lassiter, an angel who had earlier saved his life, finally tells Tohr why he has been assigned to him. Tohr’s wife and their unborn son have not been able to enter the Fade because Tohr won’t let them go. If Tohr doesn’t learn to move on with his life, then his family will be lost forever in the In Between (a purgatory of sorts.) Finally, this is the incentive he needs to start taking baby steps towards a future.
Review: I loved it! I’m a huge fan of this series, but I have to admit that I’ve been a little disappointed with a couple of the more recent releases because some of the plotlines and characters sounded too similar to earlier books. Lover Reborn was nothing like that. Everything about this book felt new and original.
I was not overly thrilled when I heard that the main character for book #10 was going to be Tohrment. The main reason was because I am completely emotionally drained by the excruciatingly painful love story between Blay and Qhuinn, and I NEED to see them get their happily-ever-after. Until the WARDen announced otherwise, I really thought book#10 was going to be their book.
Besides that issue, Tohrment already had love in his life at one time. It was very sad when his wife died earlier in the series, but since vampires are only supposed to have one true bonded mate in their lifetime, I couldn’t imagine how the WARDen could have him find love again without making one of the relationships seem less meaningful that the other. It was really interesting to see how she made it work. Obviously, Tohr does find love again with No’One, but there was never a mention of being bonded. If you are a fan of the series, then you know that the male vampires release a bonding scent when they are bonding to their true mate. Although it was never pointed out or discussed, that release of the bonding scent never happened between Tohr and No’One in this book, which leads me to believe that the vampires can love again even if they can only bond once.
Something else I really liked about this book was that we took a little bit of a break from the forelesser/lesser storylines which were starting to get a little repetitive. The brothers were still fighting lessers in this book, but they weren’t the primary antagonists. Instead, there is a group of vampire warriors who would like to overthrow King Wrath and take his throne. This group, lead by Xcor, was originally trained by the Bloodletter (V’s father) centuries earlier. The presence of this band of warriors creates a variety of potential storylines for future books. I really liked how these new characters were written. There are already MANY little threads that tie them to the original group of characters.
Last but not least, I was THRILLED with the amount of content there was in this book about other members of the Brotherhood. One of the most challenging things about this series in the past has been the disconnect from the characters we loved in previous books. This book did a better job of bringing the whole ”family” together than any other book in the series, and several of the primary story lines were focused on old characters rather than new ones.
I highly recommend Lover Reborn and the entire Black Dagger Brotherhood Series. It is one of my favorite paranormal romance series of all time.