Friday, May 7, 2010

REVIEW: Lover Eternal by J.R. Ward

ISBN 978-0-451-21804-9
Series: Guardians of Eternity, Book 2
Genre: Paranormal Romance
(c) March 2006, Signet Eclipse, Penguin Group
J.R. Ward's website

Rating: 4 stars

Buy Link (paper): Book Depository

"A great improvement over Dark Lover! Lover Eternal makes me a solid fan of the Black Dagger Brotherhood!" 

I've said that there was nothing remarkable about Dark Lover, but I sure can't say the same for Lover Eternal. From the moment Rhage met Mary, I was hooked and caught. I couldn't turn the pages fast enough. J.R. Ward is truly a remarkable author in the way she was able to get me to be invested in her characters. She is also very good at twisting the characters' emotions (like when Rhage was first rejected by Mary) and making me feel his hurt and her insecurity.

Rhage was so sweet as he tried to court Mary in a way that wouldn't alarm her. I like his persistence in pursuing her, despite her "rejection" (sort of) of him, and I like the way he treated her with care, the way he savored her. There was something very tender and precious about the start of their relationship, like the slow blossoming of flowers, specifically in their first dinner scene and later on, when he went to her house.

And Mary...Mary was so very human--her insecurities, her fears, her panic and her incredulity that a gorgeous guy like Rhage would be interested in her. It is so easy to identify with her and feel with her and for her. Yet, she is also amazingly brave in face of her sickness and in protecting people she cared about. So unselfish. I especially like the way Rhage described her eyes: "Gunmetal gray, surrounded by lashes the color of her hair, they were grave, serious, reminding him of males who fought and survived battle. They were staggeringly beautiful in their strength." Truly, despite Mary's insecurities, she is a warrior and a fitting mate to Rhage.

However, I was frustrated with her insecurities by the last one or two times (it went on way too long at the expense of Rhage's feelings) and she started to be annoying, especially with the way she hurt Rhage with her comments. I would've thrown down the book were I not felt compelled to know how it turned out in the end for them. But the scene after she pushed Rhage away and he came after her at Bella's farm house and she stoically held on to her position and Rhage turned away, ready to leave her....when she ran after him and his arms came slowly around her...sigh. Good sigh.

Rhage did something in the middle of the book that would've broken any woman's heart, especially one who was in love with him. I tried to understand why he did what he did, and the most I could come up with was because he cared too much about Mary to hurt her. Yet, at the same time, he was also in a quandary. Whatever he did or did not do, he would be hurting her. I feel that he needed to go through it to realize he was never going to do it again, that it was unbearable for him, that it also hurt him. He also seemed to accept his feelings for Mary after that, that whatever she hurled at him, he would still continue to love her and stay by her side (instead of leaving the way he did previous times).

And oh, of course, I'm totally curious and eager to know what's gonna happen to John Matthew. (Can't wait for Lover Mine. I love it when I start a series late, so now I have all the next books to look forward to without having to wait!) He should be Darius come back to life, isn't he? But why is "Tehrror" the name that he dreamed of?

And with this book, I'm solidly a fan of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. *grin*

Buy Link (paper): Book Depository

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