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#BookReview – “Lover Enshrined” by JR Ward

Blurb

Fiercely loyal to the Black Dagger Brotherhood, Phury has sacrificed himself for the good of the race, becoming the male responsible for keeping the Brotherhood’s bloodlines alive. As Primale of the Chosen, he is obligated to father the sons and daughters who will ensure that the traditions of the race survive, and that there are warriors to fight those who want all vampires extinguished.

As his first mate, the Chosen Cormia wants to win not only his body, but his heart for herself. She is drawn to the noble responsibility behind the emotionally scarred male. But Phury has never allowed himself to know pleasure or joy. As the war with the Lessening Society grows grim, tragedy looms over the Brotherhood’s mansion, and Phury must decide between duty and love….

Review

In the sixth Black Dagger Brotherhood book, Cormia has lived her entire life obeying the rules, never thinking for herself, and always putting the needs of others before her own. She doesn’t see herself as an individual, but part of a whole. As a Chosen and the First Mate, she’s honor-bound to mate with the Primale and bear his children. Though she’s attracted to Phury, she does her best to avoid him.

Phury has a lot of responsibilities. He’s in love with his brother’s shellan (wife), he’s a drug addict, and he’s lost his sense of right and wrong when he kills his enemies, the lessers. He’s also a virgin, but he doesn’t want Cormia or any of the women at his command.

The Scribe Virgin, the vampires’ deity, has declared a Brotherhood warrior must mate with her followers, a group of women known as the Chosen. Phury is that warrior. It’s his duty to impregnate his First Mate and to impregnate her sisters, as well, the other 39 members of the Chosen.

There was very little romance between Phury and Cormia, especially since he was so hung up on Bella. They barely spent any time together, and I couldn’t see how they fell in love. There’s only one sex scene between them, and it was fast and unromantic.

The side plots about John were, as usual, the best part of the book. His fascination with Xhex is growing, and he finally mans up enough to let her know. All their sexy interactions brought a smile to my face. In fact, I’m happy whenever John is on the page.

Qhuinn and Blaylock’s friendship has forever changed. I love these guys! Since his transition, Qhuinn has been an arrogant, sex-addicted kid but one split-second decision and a resulting family betrayal forced him to grow up.

We learn more about Rehv and what makes him tick. His story is set up in this one. Though we haven’t met his love interest, we met the Princess, the woman who’s blackmailing him and forcing him to sleep with her.

Tohr finally returns, but he’s not the same man as before.

Maybe I missed something, but the timeline from the first book to this one seems off. It’s either been 13 months or three years. I’m not sure which.

Ms. Ward’s writing style has changed. The stories are becoming wordy, which slows the pacing. In this book and the last one, many questions are ending with periods, not question marks.

I enjoyed the story for John, Qhuinn, Blay, Rehv, and even Lash (the vampire-turned-lesser villain), but I couldn’t get into Phury and Cormia.

3 Stars