Thursday, June 02, 2005

Dark Lover

Here at PBW, I don't have a committee of literary experts to tell me what to read. With good friends to recommend books, writer weblogs to check out the talent, and the terrific variety of genre fiction in general, why would I need one?

Furthermore, I don't mind talking about what I'm reading, but why should I tell you people what to read? You've got friends, weblogs, bookstores, and brains, don't you?

That was the status quo, until an editor sent me this book, which I had three weeks to read and consider for a quote. I've only done this a couple of times, and I usually end up regretting it, but I would walk barefoot over broken glass for this particular editor, so I said I'd take a look.

The day the book arrived I read one page. I admit, to see how bad it was. Then I read another page, and another, and then the chapter, because it wasn't bad, it was great. Another chapter, and I realized it was better than great, it was kick-ass. Somewhere around chapter three the world went away and I forgot to make dinner and the house could have burned down and it wouldn't have mattered, because by then the Black Dagger Brotherhood owned me, and I wasn't putting the book aside for anything.

The hell with quotes and blurbs; some books are just too damn good to keep to yourself. That's why I'm backing this book, Dark Lover, a novel of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, by J.R. Ward.

Dark Lover by J.R. Ward

The basic premise: Wrath is the last purebred vampire on the planet. Caught up in a turf war with inhuman slayers bent on exterminating his kind, he fights alongside his warrior brothers, the Black Dagger Brotherhood, as the last defenders of their race. When one of his most trusted fighters is killed, Wrath discovers the dead man left behind an unprotected, half-human daughter who is unaware of her heritage. Wrath has no choice but to go after Beth Randall and bring her into the world of the undead -- by any means necessary.

I've been trying to think of how to describe Dark Lover. It's going to be called a lot of things. Dark erotica, you bet. Vampire/paranormal romance, absolutely. But J.R. Ward is not like anyone else who's already out there writing it. She's got her own unique voice, and it's so clear and strong that it grabs a reader right away. You can't slap a label on someone who writes like this.

There were so many things about the book that impressed me from the writer's perspective, too: the tone; close attention to detail; flawless pacing; the clean, uncluttered writing; plus the drama, the fun, the scary parts, and the terrific romance. What I loved most was the style of this book. You can't fake style; you've either got it or you don't.

Dark Lover is J.R. Ward's debut novel for Signet Eclipse, and will be coming to bookstores nationwide in early September; ISBN#0-451-21695-4; you can pre-order it from Amazon.com here.

14 comments:

  1. Anonymous6:41 AM

    Wow! I usually don’t comment on your posts (even though I read them daily), but now I have to, reading your praise for Dark Lover. I put the book on my wish list out of curiosity, as I liked the author’s previous books (written under a different name), not knowing what to expect. Now, I’ll make sure to get my hands on it as soon as it is released. Thanks! The author can count herself lucky having you on her side. *smile*

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  2. You can't beat a recommendation like that. Thanks, I'll be sure to check it out.

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  3. Sophia10:57 AM

    Do you know if the publisher has put up an extract from this book anywhere? If not, I was wondering if it was possible for you to post an extract from this book - say, the first 200 words? I don't decide to buy based on somebody else's view of an author's style or quality of writing; I want to see it and judge for myself.

    Sophia

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  4. Sophia wrote: Do you know if the publisher has put up an extract from this book anywhere? If not, I was wondering if it was possible for you to post an extract from this book - say, the first 200 words? I don't decide to buy based on somebody else's view of an author's style or quality of writing; I want to see it and judge for myself.

    Let me check into this, Sophia, and I'll let you know.

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  5. Wow--this sounds great! Thanks for the recommendation! :)

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  6. Anonymous1:18 PM

    Thank you for providing the information. I've added to my long list of books to buy. Can anyone provide the authors other name and/or the title of anything else she's written. Thanks again!
    Marie

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  7. Thanks for the information. I've been waiting for it since you first mentioned it. The premise sounds great and I will put it on my list for Sept.

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  8. Anonymous3:13 PM

    The author's other name is Jessica Bird. She writes contemp romance under that banner.

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  9. I'm always on the look out for great horror/paranormal romantic fiction--because I shudder at "paranormal romance" most of the time, so thanks for the Rec. And it seems that Signet Eclipse is stepping out to declare themselves as the home for authors who don't want to be stuck in Forumula Romanceland.

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  10. For Sophia and anyone interested in more of a preview of Dark Lover, I've obtained an excerpt from J.R. Ward, and posted it on my Darkyn website forums here.

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  11. The excerpt is excellent. Thank you for recommending the book. It's already on my list of "must read as soon as it comes out" books.
    ~ Caryle

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  12. Sophia8:43 AM

    PBW,

    Thank you very much for taking the time to post the excerpt.

    Sophia

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  13. Anonymous11:35 PM

    I just finished the bood, Dark Lover. It was everything that you said. The story grips you from page 1 and keeps you until the end. I would highly recommond this book.

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  14. Having just finished Dark Lover, all I can say is WOW. What a great book. I am glad you are recommending it. Because I am telling all my friends to read it. Loved it.

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