Payne, twin sister of Vishous, is cut from the same dark, warrior cloth as her brother: A fighter by nature, and a maverick when it comes to the traditional role of Chosen females, there is no place for her on the Far Side… and no role for her on the front lines of the war, either.
When she suffers a paralyzing injury, human surgeon Dr. Manuel Manello is called in to treat her as only he can- and he soon gets sucked into her dangerous, secret world. Although he never before believed in things that go bump in the night- like vampires- he finds himself more than willing to be seduced by the powerful female who marks both his body and his soul.
As the two find so much more than an erotic connection, the human and vampire worlds collide … just as a centuries old score catches up with Payne and puts both her love and her life in deadly jeopardy.
Lover Unleashed by J.R. Ward
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
So this is not just a story of Payne and Manny, but also of Vishous and Jane. Again, we see the story of Vishous and Jane played out. This time, they have a lot of problems, one that might not have come up during the previous books, especially based on their “whirlwind romance”. In a lot of ways, this made it hard to read the book. I was hoping to read more about Payne and to see more of a story development on her and her love life. Instead this book felt to be a sequel to Lover Unbound (not a bad thing, just not exactly what I wanted).
Payne is an amazing character. Determined to take control of her life in her way, she makes you want to live your life to the fullest. But this type of personality also leads to a lot of heartbreak and misconceptions. At the very beginning, the need to walk or she would commit suicide was heartbreaking.
Manny involved in this story leads to a whole lot of revelations: Payne’s gifts, Manny’s relation to the Brotherhood and Butch, and his on background. I will admit that I didn’t really like Manny in Lover Unbound, but I really did like getting to know his character in this book. He wasn’t as much of a cocky bastard as I first thought.
One good thing about this book, is the added potential conflict in this book. With the entrance of a rogue band of vampires that were formerly lead by the Bloodletter, you can bet in future books that you will get to see a lot of conflict, not only with the lesser but also with the Black Dagger Brotherhood.
There are of course some things that irritated me. Jane seemed to be whiny, Vishous seemed to be extra whiny PLUS his “wound warrior” act was a pain; Payne in her determination to escape her mother, even if it meant through her death, and then there was Manny’s determination to booze his way through life without Payne was irritating. There are ways to make a story move on without whiny, wounded, suicidal, and drunk characters.
Overall, I think this is a good book, and it is worth the read, especially if you have read the other books in the BDB series.