Book Review: J. R. Ward’s Lover Unleashed

Posted June 24, 2011 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: J. R. Ward’s Lover Unleashed

Lover Unleashed


J.R. Ward

paranormal romance in Hardcover edition that was published by New American Library (NAL) on March 29, 2011 and has 489 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Dark Lover, Lover Eternal, Lover Awakened, Covet, Crave, Lover Revealed, Lover Unbound, Lover Enshrined, Lover Avenged, Lover Mine, Envy, An Irresistible Bachelor, His Comfort and Joy, Lover Reborn, Rapture, Lover at Last, Possession, The King, The Shadows, The Bourbon Kings, Blood Kiss, The Beast, Blood Vow, The Chosen, Blood Fury

Ninth in the Black Dagger Brotherhood paranormal romance series set in contemporary Caldwell, New York, with the couple focus on Payne and Dr. Manello.

In 2012, Lover Unleashed was on the All About Romance (AAR) Annual Reader Poll for Guiltiest Pleasure AND Most Disappointing Romance. In 2011, it won the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award for Vampire Romance, the Romance Reviews Award for Best Paranormal Romance AND Best Paranormal Vampire Romance, and was the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Romance.

My Take

Yeah, I enjoyed it although I’m starting to wonder just how many kids Wrath has out there. Seems a bit convenient. I do enjoy the walk back through history as we learn the backstory on different vampires.

I had hoped we’d get somewhere with Qhuinn’s love for Blay and now Ward’s upped the anxiety stakes with Xcor’s planning against Wrath. And, of course, one never knows where the glymera will leap except that it will be for their own benefit.

Interestingly enough, there wasn’t much about the lessers in Lover Unleashed.

Oops…well, at least Payne got what she wanted. Out of Sanctuary. Even if it took Wrath breaking her spine and spurning her mother’s help. Wrath takes Payne to Earth where Doc Jane gives them the news that she can’t fix her. That Payne has only one chance and that chance is slipping away by the minute.

Payne’s only hope is Dr. Manello. Whom Jane can’t find. Whom she both dreads and hopes to find. Dreads for he believes she is dead. Hopes because Vishous is already devastated. If Payne dies…

Payne’s drama is not the only one. There’s Xcor and his band of unmerry vampires making their mark in Caldwell and against Wrath while looking for the woman who murdered his father, the Bloodletter. There’s Qhuinn and his struggle with his feelings for and about Blay. There’s the upcoming drama of Vishous’ sister, his sister!!, fighting at the side of the Brothers…

Ah well, you know the story won’t go anywhere without Jane finding Manny and getting him back to the compound. But the operation is both a success and not. On so many levels.

I really do recommend this series. For all of the violence and their appearance, the Brothers are about protection and love. I just love how caring the boys are in all that sexy leather with their hard muscles, weapons in hand…

The Story

A fighter by nature, and a maverick when it comes to the traditional role of Chosen females, there is no place for Payne on the Far Side…and no role for her on the front lines of the war, either. Especially when Payne suffers a paralyzing injury.

Her only hope is the human surgeon Dr. Manuel Manello who 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 even more deadly jeopardy.

The Characters

Payne is the twin sister of Vishous and as desirous of going into battle as her brother. The Scribe Virgin, the goddess of them all, is their mother.

Dr. Manny Manello is Doc Jane’s old boss and a damn good surgeon.

The Black Dagger Brotherhood is…
…composed of a small group of handsome, extremely well-developed, black leather-wearing vampire aristocrats lethal with fighting skills. Doc Jane is mated to Vishous (Lover Unbound, 5). Beth is mated to Wrath, son of Wrath, King of All Vampires (Dark Lover, 1). Marissa is mated to Butch “Dhestroyer” O’Neal, a former cop with an unexpected ancestor (Lover Revealed, 4). Mary is mated to Rhage (Lover Eternal, 2). John Matthew is a mute soldier mated to Xhex, Trez’s security chief (their story is in Lover Mine, 8). Qhuinn is John’s contemporary and bodyguard, denying the truth. Blay is the third of their trio and in love with Qhuinn. Bella is mated to Zsadist (Lover Awakened, 3). Tohrment is still mourning his Wellsie. Cormia was mated to Phury in Lover Enshrined, 6).

Lassiter is a cheeky angel with a filthy mind.

The glymera are the vampire gentility. The Band of Bastards is a group of vampires who came over from the Old Country intending to incite a coup d’état against Wrath. Xcor is their brutal leader. The Lessening Society is a group of humans, lessers who have given up their souls to the Omega, a godlike being from another plane of existence, in order to destroy all vampires.

The Cover

The sheeny, metallic cover theme continues with the tattooed torso of a hunky guy this time with the very, scary eyes of a woman looking at us over his shoulder.