Blood Kiss by J.R. Ward (Black Dagger Legacy #1)

Blood Kiss by JR WardAvailable: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Paranormal Romance

Publisher: Signet

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Pam

Paradise, blooded daughter of the king’s First Advisor, is ready to break free from the restrictive life of an aristocratic female. Her strategy? Join the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s training center program and learn to fight for herself, think for herself…be herself. It’s a good plan, until everything goes wrong. The schooling is unfathomably difficult, the other recruits feel more like enemies than allies, and it’s very clear that the Brother in charge, Butch O’Neal, a.k.a. the Dhestroyer, is having serious problems in his own life.

And that’s before she falls in love with a fellow classmate. Craeg, a common civilian, is nothing her father would ever want for her, but everything she could ask for in a male. As an act of violence threatens to tear apart the entire program, and the erotic pull between them grows irresistible, Paradise is tested in ways she never anticipated—and left wondering whether she’s strong enough to claim her own power…on the field, and off.

I have loved the Black Daggar Brotherhood series from the first time I picked up Wrath’s book, the alpha males and the amazing women who are their mates make this series fun, exciting and very sexy. I have missed a few here and there and know that someday I will eventually go back and read them, but when this book came up to read I was hesitant, not sure I wanted to hear about a younger generation, however I am so glad I did as it took me back to the Brothers and the entertaining and thrilling story telling of Ms. Ward.

Paradise is the blooded daughter of Abalone, the King’s First Advisor, raised in a protected environment surrounded by wealth and love. Yet she is tired of being sheltered and wants to do something different, something no other glymera has done before, to be the first to train with the Brothers who are recruiting new fighters in order to battle their enemy. Amazingly, her father has given his blessing, and as the training begins I like how she protects him, giving him a rosy version of what it is like, when in reality she gets the crap kicked out of her, it had me smiling.

Craeg is ready to fight, his family was murdered by the lessers and he wants revenge. He comes from a working class family and is angry at the glymera and partially blames them for his father’s death. He is one of several recruits that make the cut, and notices Paradise right away, and the connection is apparent to them both.

I truly enjoyed being around the Brothers again, I love the camaraderie, the kick ass brothers and women who are part of this kindred family, I also enjoy their kidding around and love how they act with their mates. I laughed out loud during one scene when the Brothers believe their manhood is compromised because of a movie night for their mates, it is hilarious.

Marissa and Butch share the pages of this book with Paradise and Craeg; we get a more in-depth view of their relationship and the struggles that many couples go through as they grow together. They are also trying to find out information about a young woman who came to Marissa for help yet died before they could find out who had beat her so badly. I like how this mystery melds the two stories and also brings her brother Havers into her life again.

As with any BDB book, secondary characters are extremely important, and I had a blast reading about some of my favorites such as Vishous, Rhage and Wrath, and the new recruits are also intriguing, Novo, Boone, Axe and Peyton are all captivating with their own backstories and I will be interested in the books that hopefully will feature these newcomers and pray the Brothers will also play large roles. Ms. Ward also brings the heat, not only with Paradise and Craeg, but also with Butch and Marissa, the spark has definitely not died between these two.

The pace is fast as the action starts from the beginning of the book and does not let up until the end. It can easily be read as a standalone, previous characters are featured, but the author helps new readers with information and there is a great glossary at the beginning. There is a bit of a NA feel about this one, but that is to be expected because this new group is young, but still fun. I did feel the HEA was a little rushed at the end, Craeg was so against all those in the aristocracy but changed his mind quickly, he still wants revenge but with Paradise’s help he will steer his anger toward the lessers. I will anxiously await the next book in this series, the BDB are back and I am excited.

I give Blood Kiss by J. R. Ward 4.25 stars!

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