Dark Lover (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #1)
Opening Line: "Darius looked around the club, taking in the teeming, half-naked bodies on the dance floor."
This is a beautifully done romance. Wrath is a sexy, tormented, to die for hero and Beth is simply perfect as his Queen. JR Ward has created a fantastic paranormal world with this series which I like to think of as Twilight for adults and I can guarantee you'll enjoy your time spent with the Black Dagger Brotherhood. DARK LOVER is ultimately addicting, sexy, erotic, funny and brash with an entertaining yet menacing cast of seriously alpha-male secondary characters who will all leave you wanting more.
Wrath is the only purebred vampire left on the planet he is also a King who refuses to lead his people. Almost blind and with a mean temper he prefers to be alone avenging the murder of his parents as he fights an endless battle against the `Lessers' (The antagonists here are a truly evil group of sickly sweet smelling undead who will stop at nothing to eliminate the vampire race) Wrath's only true companions are the members of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. A dangerous gang of eclectic characters each with their own set of issues (and each getting their own upcoming book as well) The Brothers have sworn their loyalties to the King and fight alongside him to protect the vampire race from the `Lessoning Society' awaiting the day when Wrath will ascend to the throne.
As we begin the Brother Darius asks Wrath to help his half human daughter through the `change' -an unstoppable transition that will turn her from human to Vampire. This is a very dangerous time and Darius's hope is that the blind King's almost pure blood will guarantee her survival. Wrath initially declines because he doesn't like humans but when Darius is killed Wrath has no choice but to honour his Brothers last wishes.
Beth hasn't been feeling like herself lately and having been raised in foster care is completely unaware of her vampire heritage. Her job as a reporter for a local newspaper sees her unknowingly reporting on her own fathers murder. Along the way we are introduced to Butch, a burnt out cop who's in love with Beth. One night Beth awakens to find a gorgeous but heavily armed man dressed in head to toe leather standing in her apartment. She is of course frightened but can't deny the instant attraction even though he appears to have fangs. Beth and Wrath's initial encounter is hot and the sparks never stop flying as Wrath takes on the position of her protector guiding her through the change. When Butch witnesses the two of them together he's horrified because Wrath has been fingered as the prime suspect in a string of unsolved murders. The killings have in fact been committed by the Lessers and in trying to keep Wrath away from Beth, Butch will only succeed in bringing the evil closer to home.
You may be initially put off by the author's odd choice of names for the Brothers. I know I definitely had trouble keeping track of who's who. Their names are weird and there are a lot of them to keep track of, each with their own set of issues and gifts, but stick with it. The language (doggen, lesser, shellan etc) was also a bit of an issue at first but thankfully Ward has included a glossary of terms which by the end of the book I found I no longer needed.
If you're a fan of paranormal romance then I can't recommend this enough and if this is a re-read for you too I discovered that the forthcoming John Mathew's identity is positively verified in a little scene with the Scribe Virgin near the end. Cheers.
My choices for Wrath