February 17, 2018 06:27 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
I had a number of five-star reads in January, but the one that stood out the most was the latest release from one of my all-time favorite authors, whose books I’ve shared again and again. In this particular book, we get not one but two love stories complete with two very sweet and passionate HEAs. One features two relatively new characters, who we’ve only known for a couple of books, while the second pairs a character who’s been around a while in this world with someone who is brand new. I ended up loving both couples and thought they were amazing together, and I hope you do, too.
As a member of the aristocracy, Peyton is expected to mate a suitable female from his own class and settle down to carry on his family’s bloodline, but he chose to enter the Brotherhood’s training program to become a soldier. Outside of the training, though, he’s basically a playboy who can’t get enough of booze, drugs, and females. At one point, he thought he’d met the perfect female for him, but she fell in love with someone else, leaving him adrift and pining for an unrequited love. Peyton is attracted to his fellow trainee, Novo, but she keeps rebuffing him, making him see her as a challenge he must conquer. It’s mostly a game to him until his rash actions while fighting out in the field, leave Novo fighting for her life. Then he must face the truth that she’s come to mean more to him than just another conquest. Until now, Peyton hasn’t been the easiest character for me to like, but that all changed in this book. I admired the way that he’s there for Novo, not only while she’s recovering from her wounds, but afterward, too, by drawing her out and earning her trust. He never turns her away, even when she reveals her heart and soul to him. I also loved how he grew and changed, finally realizing that his father’s opinions didn’t really matter anymore, and by the end, he’d really earned my affection.
Novo is a strong, independent female, who went into the training program, feeling like she had something to prove. After losing the male she thought she loved to her sister and suffering alone through a tragedy that nearly broke her, she’s determined to be strong and independent. She has no desire to get involved with a playboy aristocrat who reminds her of her ex. But as her sister’s mating ceremony to the male looms closer and Novo feels like she’s being forcibly drug into their lives, it sends her down an emotion rabbit hole she doesn’t want to revisit again. Then Novo is wounded, and with her family too wrapped up in mating day fever, she finds herself unexpectedly confiding in Peyton about things she’s kept to herself for years and she’s surprised when he proves to be far more than the pretty boy aristocrat she thought he was. Normally I’m not quite as big a fan of kick-ass heroines with the hard emotional armor, but Novo really made sense to me. I loved the whole growing process she must go through to put her demons to rest and find peace in both her relationship with Peyton and with her family. She may be hard as nails on the outside, but she has a gooey center. She lives life on her own terms, but she’s rife with vulnerabilities that make her relatable, and for that I really liked her.
Our second couple is Saxton, loyal council of the King, who’s been nursing a broken heart ever since the male he loved left him for another and Ruhn, the newest member of the household, who was a mere handymale before coming to live at the Brotherhood mansion. Aware that Ruhn also has a background as a fighter, the King tasks him with acting as Saxton’s bodyguard while the other male investigates a civilian complaint. As they spend time together, an attraction blossoms, but Ruhn has never really given a great deal of thought to his sexuality before and finds himself surprised and uncertain in his attraction to Saxton. Then there’s Ruhn’s dark past that he fears will cause Saxton to reject him if he reveals too much. Saxton is an elegant, classy male who is confident in who he is which is something I admired about him. I also enjoyed how he took things slow and easy, feeling out the waters between him and Ruhn instead of jumping in headfirst. He can be sweet and tender, a passionate lover, and shockingly dangerous when the male he loves is harmed. Ruhn is a shy, quiet introvert who’s uncomfortable living in the opulence of the mansion and not earning his own keep. He doesn’t really want to use his fighting skills, because they were acquired in a torturous way, but he wants to contribute to the household. I thought that Ruhn was going to be a sweet beta male, until his intense alpha protector and dominant lover side comes roaring to life that’s in complete opposition to his shy, blushing persona outside the bedroom and his bodyguard duties. I found this to be an intriguing juxtaposition in his character, and I totally adored him as a hero.
I really enjoyed the way that the two couples mirrored each other and I also felt like both couples were absolutely perfect for one another. The way Peyton and Novo help each other to grow beyond their life circumstances to find hope, peace, and love with each other was phenomenal. I was also extremely happy that Saxton finally got the HEA ending he’s so richly deserved, and he couldn’t have chosen a better partner than Ruhn. They just fit together in a way that almost shouldn’t work with them coming from such disparate backgrounds, but it does even though I’m at a loss for words to explain it. That’s why I’m naming J. R. Ward’s Blood Fury as my January Book of the Month. If you enjoy paranormal romance filled with angst, drama, intensely passionate interactions, and double the HEAs, then you should definitely give this book a try. Keep reading to learn how you can win a copy for your own library.
In this sexy paranormal romance novel set in the world of the Black Dagger Brotherhood, #1 New York Times bestselling author J. R. Ward tells the story of two couples -- both fighting to find love in the midst of the war with the Lessening Society.
Novo, as a female in the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s training program, feels like she has to prove herself to everybody—and she has no interest in being distracted by falling in love. But when Peyton proves to be so much more than a rich playboy, she is forced to confront the tragedy that has broken her soul and closed her off from love.
As the two grapple with Novo’s past and Peyton’s present, another couple must contend with a connection that is unparalleled—and potentially scandalous. Saxton, who has had his heart broken, discovers in himself a deep-seated attraction to Ruhn, a new member of the household. But will the other male explore the connection? Or will he close his mind and his heart to what could be true love . . . and cost Saxton everything?
Warning: This book contains explicit language and sexual situations, including spicy M/F and M/M interactions, a visit to a sex club, and a little exhibitionism.
Read my complete review of Blood Fury.
If you would like to win a copy of Blood Fury to see how wonderful it is for yourself, just enter the Rafflecopter giveaway below. One lucky winner will receive their choice of an eBook or print copy of the book. If the winner chooses an eBook, I will gift it to them via the eBook retailer of their choice (Amazon or B & N). If the winner chooses a print copy, I will have it mailed directly to them via Amazon. Good luck!
International Entrants: You are welcome to enter my contest, but please note that not all eBooks are available in all countries due to copyright restrictions. If this is the case, Amazon does offer an option to trade for a gift card (I'm not sure about B & N). If you choose print, I can mail it to you via the Amazon website that services your country, pending availability and cost. Otherwise I will mail it to you via U. S. Amazon's standard international shipping, but it may take up to 6-8 weeks to arrive, and I may not have the capability of tracking the package.
Tags: J. R. Ward