Here I was, all prepared to gush over Dark Lover by J.R. Ward as I hadn’t seen much buzz about it in the blogosphere. I finished it last night and loved it and was all excited about how I was going to go on and on and on about how people need to buy this book and support a new author. And then, as I’m blog-hopping before getting to the post writing, I see not one but TWO other blogs talking about it, lol. Both PBW and Sybil mentioned this book today. Sybil has a review up on AAR. PBW (Lynn Viehl) has a quote on the cover of Dark Lover and mentions where it’s at on the bestseller list. She also teases her readers with some potential news about the author/book but I haven’t seen a follow up on what that news might be 🙁

But I am keeping my chin up because I’ve been able to grab the opportunity to get a couple of signed copies of this book (one for me, nyah-nyah) and so I’m going to give one away to readers of my blog. Cuz I can and I want to be cooler than Sybil and PBW (shuttup-leave me my delusions, would ya?). But first, about the book…

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.

The only purebred vampire left on earth, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But, when one of his most trusted fighters is killed-leaving his half-breed daughter unaware of his existence or her fate-Wrath must usher her into the world of the undead-a world of sensuality beyond her wildest dreams.

Can you hear that sound? That’s me squeeeeeing. No really. Let me tell you how deeply this book sucked me in (excuse the pun): My husband wanted sex. I wanted a few hours alone in a quiet room with no one asking me for anything (side effect of being a sahm). Of course I got my way. 3 hours later, I came downstairs with a post-coital glow. From the book. Unfortunately for Josh 😉 I was grinning from ear to ear and my poor husband, “it was that good, huh?” Yes, it was that good. So good, that it bumped me out of my reading slump. The only problem was that no book on my TBR shelf looked as though it would measure up in the immediate after-effects of this book, so I ended up perusing a Parenting magazine instead. But I digress…

In her debut novel, the first book of The Black Dagger Brotherhood series, J.R. Ward enters the romance world with a smashing hit and lets readers know there’s a new vampire series in town. Step aside Laurell K. Hamilton and Sherrilyn Kenyon- J.R. is the fresh voice of vampire future lore! (dang, I sound like I’m writing a cover blurb, don’t I?) But ladies (and any gent that happens upon my blog looking for naked pictures), I can’t emphasize to you how good this book was. Of course, it had it’s flaws (very, very few flaws and I refuse to dwell on them and ruin my euphoria) but those can be overlooked in a book that’s filled with an interesting plot and fascinating characters- both the primary characters and the secondary characters whose stories are yet to be told. The imagery is vivid, passions run hot, and secrets are held close. I don’t know how she did it, but I stand in awe of J.R. Ward’s ability to find a new twist on the vampire mystique! Once you enter her world of The Brotherhood, vampires, lessers, and humans, you’ll never want to leave. The pages will seem to turn themselves so make sure the husband is occupied, the kids are in bed and the phone is off because you won’t want to leave their world until you’ve reached the very last page!

Once you’ve read the book, make sure you visit J.R. Ward’s webpage and the interviews with the brothers (don’t read them until you’ve read the book because there are spoilers, as she warns at the top of that page). Check out the Deleted Scenes as well. And then be prepared to join me in waiting on pins and needles until March 2006 for the release of Rhage’s story, Lover Eternal. Did you hear that whine in my voice? I have to wait until March? Wahhhhh…

2005 isn’t over yet, but as a paranormal romance fan and a vampire-romance slut, I’m putting Dark Lover on the top of my list of current 2005 releases as best read to date. If you’re a fan of dark romance paranormals featuring sexy vampires, pick this one up immediately. And please, buy it new and support this brand new author in her kick-ass debut so we can be assured of future offerings from her!

And now, for the contest…

I said I’d been given the opportunity to get my hot little hands on a couple of signed copies of the book. I’m giving one away to someone who comments here, in this post and answers the following two questions:

a) Why did you either love this book (if you’ve already read it) or why are looking forward to reading it? (or do you have other feelings about it?)

and

b) what one (or two) paranormal vampire books you would recommend (yes, I’m looking for more books to add to my towering TBR stack)

Contest will end one week from today… but I’ll make that next Saturday, October 1st! And as before, I don’t care where you live- I’ll mail overseas, just ask Maili!

Now, go forth and read! You won’t be sorry! Who me? A fangirl? Nahhhh 😉 Oh and can someone please ask J.R. Ward to hurry up and finish her website so I can squee over even more cool stuff? 😉

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