Lover Awakened (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #3)Lover Awakened by J.R. Ward
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Lover Awakened is the third book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series and deals primarily with Zsadist. There is no review of what has gone before so newcomers to the series have to read Dark Lover and especially Lover Eternal as that contains the set up for this book and Lover Awakened carries right on with no let up.

Bella, who was introduced in the previous book has gone through a traumatic experience and thanks to the impression she made on the scarred brother, is in his room which is not somewhere any female would voluntarily wish to be, if the rumours about Zsadist are true.

Zadist is not only scarred on the outside, but due to his being used as a blood slave and worse following his transition in the early 1800s is also emotionally scarred. As his twin states he is "ruined, not broken."

This sets out an achingly, agonisingly sweet story as Bella reaches out and proves that Zsadist is not ruined after all. The road is by no means straight due to his past which is explored which leaves feeling unworthy of her and doing everything in his power to rebuff her in the hopes that she would go to his twin or some other male of worth.

And at times, the rebuffs work and the frustration is certainly felt but the title of Lover Awakened is the most perfect title for this story.

There are other plot lines that weave themselves through this book, such as the continuing story of John Matthew whose bloodline is revealed. Of course, the lessers are still at work, particularly Mr. O., with devastating consequences for all.

If I had to use one word to describe this book, it would be ‘tragedy’. It is one of those books that will move you and make you feel what the characters are feeling. I could barely stop reading this because I wanted to know what happened and at the same time I didn’t want to read to fast because I wanted to delay certain parts.

Out of the three that I have read so far, this emotional roller coaster is the best, which is saying something given how extraordinary the first two were. I’m going to be a blubbering wreck by the time I get to the end of the series!

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