Thursday, June 6, 2013

JR Wards Lover At Last Review

Qhuinn, son of no one, is used to being on his own. Disavowed from his bloodline, shunned by the aristocracy, he has finally found an identity as one of the most brutal fighters in the war against the Lessening Society. But his life is not complete. Even as the prospect of having a family of his own seems to be within reach, he is empty on the inside, his heart given to another.... 

Blay, after years of unrequited love, has moved on from his feelings for Qhuinn. And it’s about time: The male has found his perfect match in a Chosen female, and they are going to have a young—just as Qhuinn has always wanted for himself. It’s hard to see the new couple together, but building your life around a pipe dream is just a heartbreak waiting to happen. As he’s learned firsthand. 

Fate seems to have taken these vampire soldiers in different directions... but as the battle over the race’s throne intensifies, and new players on the scene in Caldwell create mortal danger for the Brotherhood, Qhuinn finally learns the true definition of courage, and two hearts who are meant to be together... finally become one.

JR Ward has, unfortunately, lost me as a paying customer.  She keeps my attention just enough that I'll pick her book up at the library but not enough for me to spend any amount of money on her books.  The Black Dagger Brotherhood seems to have lost its spark and Ward is beating a dead horse by allowing it to live. The books I keep re-reading are her first three. After that...well...

Lover At Last is the story of Qhuinn and Blaylock.  They've been playing hard to get with each other for several books now. Their story a subplot that was nice. Their love story should have remained as a subplot.  I'm all for reading about a gay relationship.  However, in this case, their wasn't much to their story.  The book would have been a hundred, may-be 200 pages long if all the secondary romances hadn't been intertwined in the book.  The book is okay.  But I was more interested in everything that did not involve Qhuinn and Blaylock getting together. 

Their are several subplots  in these later books, often with characters I don't see the relevance of or how they really relate to the Black Dagger Brotherhood.  In one subplot, the story ends with a character being kidnapped and needing rescue. Another subplot stalls after the male horribly flubs the first conversation he has with someone he really likes and is convinced he'll never have a chance with her.  The one minor plot I really like, the only one that feels like it should be in the story and be focused on feels really neglected...

Layla is pregnant with Qhuinn's child.  She and he wanted to have a child.  They don't desire or love each other.  And since they both wanted a child they decided to see about conceiving one. They do! This was set up at least a book ago. However at the very beginning of this book, Layla is on the verge of losing the child.  Despite medical science being unable to save the fetus, the miscarriage stops with some magical help and Layla continues to carry the child.  What was the point? I would have been more interested in seeing how Mother and Father handled the loss, especially when both parents desired another. Instead, the rest of the book allows Mommy and Daddy to simply go:

"How are you?"
"I'm well."
"The baby?"
"Doing well."

Anyways, the neglected plot point I mentioned above is that, Layla desires another male.  The male she desires is a traitor to society.  He has attempted to kill the King of vampires.  I think his name is Xcor.  She wants to keep the king where he is.  And Xcor will die if the Black Dagger Brotherhood catches him.  Layla lives with the black dagger brotherhood.  This is what I want to read!!!

What would make the baby thing more interesting, considering the situation Layla and Qhuinn are in with each other.... What if Blay didn't want a baby? If he were in a relationship with Qhuinn then Blay would have to be around the baby at least some of the time once it was born.  And what if it was the same for Xcor.  He may not want to have a child.  But no one seems to consider this.  No one seems to consider the child as anything more than a "Is Layla still carrying it?" question.  And with the whole prophecy/vision thing, that question is kind of redundant.  I mean, we know what the child will grow up to look like.

To me, poor Ward has lost what once made this series un-put-down-able. I'll borrow the next book, like I did with this book.  But if the story doesn't improve....I may stop reading all together.

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