To end my crazy literary adventures, I took a quick and impromptu trip to Cincinnati. May kicked off with my first Romantic Times Convention down in Atlanta. In the beginning of June, I attended a Feminism in Romance Novels panel at The Strand and then BookCon at the end of the week. During this time I learned about Lori Foster’s annual Reader and Author Get Together, or RAGT. More importantly, I learned that both J.R. Ward and Karen Marie Moning would be signing books on Saturday, June 10th. So like any other normal romance fan, I booked a flight to Cincinnati. Luckily, my mom encouraged this madness and even attended with me! We arrived on Friday and spent the day exploring the city before heading to the book-signing on Saturday. And boy did we have a blast! RAGT, for the little we attended, was an awesome event and totally on my list for next year! I had a great time hanging out in line for J.R. Ward and Karen Marie Moning and chatting with the guests! I brought books for both authors to sign. I also got books signed for the people who introduced me to both authors. One of my best friends has always given me the best romance novel recommendations and she, many years ago, insisted that I would loved Karen Marie Moning’s Highlander series and she was totally right! When I was first reading vampire romance, back in my *hides face* Twilight days, I had read Dark Lover by J.R. Ward. However, I couldn’t get into the series back then, probably because I was a bit too young. When I started working at Barnes and Noble a few years ago, one of my coworkers recommended the Black Dagger Brotherhood and I tried them out again. Of course, I loved them. So I had to get a book signed for her as well. I truly had an amazing time and feel so blessed to meet such amazing authors. Every experience I’ve had in the romance novel community has been positive and I’m so grateful for such a supportive and lovely group of people. Okay, gushing done, time for pictures!
Tag Archives: J R Ward
The Beast by J.R. Ward
Description: Rhage and Mary return in a new novel of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, a series “so popular, I don’t think there’s a reader today who hasn’t at least heard of [it]” (USA Today).
Nothing is as it used to be for the Black Dagger Brotherhood. After avoiding war with the Shadows, alliances have shifted and lines have been drawn. The slayers of the Lessening Society are stronger than ever, preying on human weakness to acquire more money, more weapons, more power. But as the Brotherhood readies for an all-out attack on them, one of their own fights a battle within himself…
For Rhage, the Brother with the biggest appetites, but also the biggest heart, life was supposed to be perfect—or at the very least, perfectly enjoyable. Mary, his beloved shellan, is by his side and his King and his brothers are thriving. But Rhage can’t understand—or control—the panic and insecurity that plague him…
And that terrifies him—as well as distances him from his mate. After suffering mortal injury in battle, Rhage must reassess his priorities—and the answer, when it comes to him, rocks his world…and Mary’s. But Mary is on a journey of her own, one that will either bring them closer together or cause a split that neither will recover from…
When I read romance novels, I do so with the expectation of the story ending and the couple living happily ever after for ever and ever. In most series, when the previous couple shows up again, they are living happily and everything is sunshine and rainbows. However, that doesn’t work in the world J.R. Ward created with her Black Dagger Brotherhood series. Her characters are larger than life and just because their book is over does not mean their problems stop. In fact, one of my favorite things about her series is being able to revisit previous couples. But instead of just being stagnant, they continue to face real issues that cause problems in their relationship. Over the course of the last few books, there have been hints of issues Mary and Rhage need to face. Needless to say, I was extremely happy that they were getting another book. And only partly terrified for what that would mean for their relationship. I think after reading The Shadows, that would be a common fear. J.R. Ward really pushed the envelope in The Shadows in terms of emotions and what the characters in her books go through. In fact, I think she even opened up the discussion to what is a romance novel (mental note, future post discussion!).
That being said, this book was truly all I wanted it to be. I adored revisiting with Mary and Rhage. The plot around them focused on Rhage’s emotional health and how their relationship could move forward. The issue of children was a big discussion. Both wanted kids but their being together was actually because Mary can not have children. However, neither let this drive their relationship apart too far. Part of this is because of Mary’s therapy background. Although, I think their foundation as a couple also played a role. The plot for the side characters included the usual cast of Assail and his issues, Xcor and Layla, and an introduction of a new human receptionist turned investigator who is questioning the strange goings-on in Caldwell. What I also liked is that the Lessers weren’t really a big part of the book. After the first book, I tend to skip over the scenes with the Lessers. They don’t really seem to change as an enemy and I’m more intrigued by the threats in the glymera. Overall, another excellent book by J.R. Ward. Can’t wait for the next one!
Rating: 4 out of 5!
The Bourbon Kings by J.R. Ward
Description: The #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Black Dagger Brotherhood delivers the first novel in an enthralling new series set amid the shifting dynamics of a Southern family defined by wealth and privilege—and compromised by secrets, deceit, and scandal….
For generations, the Bradford family has worn the mantle of kings of the bourbon capital of the world. Their sustained wealth has afforded them prestige and privilege—as well as a hard-won division of class on their sprawling estate, Easterly. Upstairs, a dynasty that by all appearances plays by the rules of good fortune and good taste. Downstairs, the staff who work tirelessly to maintain the impeccable Bradford facade. And never the twain shall meet.
For Lizzie King, Easterly’s head gardener, crossing that divide nearly ruined her life. Falling in love with Tulane, the prodigal son of the bourbon dynasty, was nothing that she intended or wanted—and their bitter breakup only served to prove her instincts were right. Now, after two years of staying away, Tulane is finally coming home again, and he is bringing the past with him. No one will be left unmarked: not Tulane’s beautiful and ruthless wife; not his older brother, whose bitterness and bad blood know no bounds; and especially not the ironfisted Bradford patriarch, a man with few morals, fewer scruples, and many, many terrible secrets.
As family tensions—professional and intimately private—ignite, Easterly and all its inhabitants are thrown into the grips of an irrevocable transformation, and only the cunning will survive.
Review:I have mixed feelings about this book. I loved J.R. Ward’s earlier Black Dagger Brotherhood books but the more recent ones have been hit or miss with me. So I was hesitant to pick up this book. The plot was fast-place and the characters quickly drew you in. This book was very much like later Black Dagger Brotherhood books with the focus on multiple characters and plots, not just the main couple. I did like the trope- gardener, Lizzie, falls in love with son of the house, Lane. While they were a good couple, I did have a few issues with their relationship. I wasn’t a fan of the fact that the hero didn’t have a job. I also didn’t like that their relationship started again while he was still married to someone else. Despite my reservations about the book, I am excited to read the new one in the series. And I can easily see how this series would become a TV show.
Rating: 3 out of 5.
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they post a new Top Ten list and everyone is welcome to join. This week’s theme is “Top Ten Author Dous You’d Love To See Write A Book Together.”
Kresley Cole and Gena Showalter!
I want a Immortals After Dark/ Lords of the Underworld crossover!
Sherrilyn Kenyon and J.R. Ward
Dark-Hunter/ Black Dagger Brotherhood crossover!
Eloisa James and Julia Quinn
Sarah MacLean and Lisa Kleypas
Writing about competing gambling halls
Jill Shalvis and Kristan Higgins
That book would be hysterical!
Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week they post a new Top Ten list and everyone is welcome to join. This week’s theme is “Ten Finished Series I Have Yet To Finish”. However, I amended it this week. So my list is “Ten Series I Have Yet To Finish”.
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
I read the first two books but I couldn’t bring myself to read the rest. However, I’ll probably watch the entire TV series, depending how far it gets.
Elemental Assassin by Jennifer Estep
I lost interest about 7 or 8 books in.
Midnight Breed by Lara Adrian
Same as Elemental Assassin, I just lost interest and I was never fan of the alien-vampire story-line anyway
Argeneau Series by Lynsay Sands
I’ll probably end up picking up this series again. I just didn’t want to buy the last two books and my library didn’t have them
Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning
I read the Fever series but wasn’t really interested in Iced. Like the Argeneau series, I’ll eventually go back and finish it.
Black Dagger Brotherhood by J.R. Ward
I know I’ll continue this series but I bought a copy of The Shadows when it came out and it has been sitting at the end of my bed for 5 months. For some reason, I just can’t bring myself to read it.
I just realized most of these series are paranormal. Huh, that’s interesting .