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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Review @ After The Final Chapters
The title, Lover at Last, is apt for the buzz that has surrounded the release of the newest instalment of the Black Dagger Brotherhood Series. As always, J.R. Ward doesn't just give you one story, but several all rolled into a massive book I devoured in forty-eight hours. The story follows not only the Quay relationship that has intrigued fans worldwide, but also...
Published on 17 July 2013 by Aimee

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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bit of a let down
I have eagerly awaited this book for SO long! I couldnt wait to see how Blay & Qhuinn's story unravelled. But, this novel wasnt even mainly about them I wouldn't say. There was 3 or 4 other stories all weaving in and out. Just laying the foundations for the next books clearly but not actually getting anywhere. Simply, getting in the way of the book I just paid £9 for...
Published on 3 April 2013 by Sarahmw1


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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bit of a let down, 3 April 2013
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This review is from: Lover at Last: Number 11 in series (Black Dagger Brotherhood Series) (Kindle Edition)
I have eagerly awaited this book for SO long! I couldnt wait to see how Blay & Qhuinn's story unravelled. But, this novel wasnt even mainly about them I wouldn't say. There was 3 or 4 other stories all weaving in and out. Just laying the foundations for the next books clearly but not actually getting anywhere. Simply, getting in the way of the book I just paid £9 for. Which, quite frankly, for a Kindle book is extortionate.

Yes, I now know how their story goes but I dont think she did it any justice at all. She's spent 11 books building us up to this point and when you combine all the pages they are actually in, I think we'd be lucky if its a third of the whole book.

So, now I know. But I'm not warm and fuzzy about it like I expected to be. Let down. Major.
But for fans of the series, you've still got to buy it, right?!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Review @ After The Final Chapters, 17 July 2013
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The title, Lover at Last, is apt for the buzz that has surrounded the release of the newest instalment of the Black Dagger Brotherhood Series. As always, J.R. Ward doesn't just give you one story, but several all rolled into a massive book I devoured in forty-eight hours. The story follows not only the Quay relationship that has intrigued fans worldwide, but also introduces new characters, follows Wrath's struggle to keep hold of the throne, delves into the queen's craving for a child, has an interesting insight to the Shadows, and reveals a new edge to the war between the vampires and the lessers.

I would have preferred the story to focus more on the relationship between Quinn and Blay, but the side stories were fast paced enough that I didn't want to skip them. At the beginning of the book Quinn has impregnated the chosen, Layla, but there are problems with the pregnancy which were really touching. Not only does J.R. Ward keep the story moving fast, but she also has a skill of using her characters (all of them!) to pull on your heartstrings.

On the other side of the love affair, Blay is splitting from his long term lover, although this is something he neglects to mention to Quinn. He's under the apprehension that he'd never be more to Quinn than a quick ride, even though the two have been best friends forever. I could accept his anger, and understand the need Blay had to keep his feelings hidden, but...

Personally I felt the conflict between the two as far as Blay being involved with someone else could have been resolved with a simple conversation, and there wouldn't be much to create tension after that. However, there were some personal issues that came into effect for Quinn about half way through the book that added to the will-they-won't-they-omg-I-can't-stand-the-waiting.
The breaking down of Quinn as a character during the last few books in the series was very emotional to me. He's not only having to deal with worry about his future young, the on-going war with the lesser, a surprise nobody expected (even though re-reading John's story I can see it was quite clearly hinted at by Lash, but shhh *spoilers*) and another threat against the throne. The fact that Blay was there through it all with him, wanting but knowing he can never have, made Lover at Last one of my favourite in the series. And did I mention hot? And not just in the main plot either.

If you haven't picked up this series yet I highly recommend that you do. Dark Lover, Wrath's story, is book 1 and the best place to start IMO :o)
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lacks dramatic tension, 29 Mar. 2013
By 
Anne (Sheffield, Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
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This eleventh book in the Black Dagger Brotherhood set finally gets to grips with the relationship between Blay and Qhuinn which has been a sub-plot for quite a few of the previous volumes. It also moves along a number of other themes in this author's world including Layla's choices, threats against Wrath, events including the Shadows and the complex world of the alternative Brotherhood, the aristocracy and the importance (or otherwise) of the bloodline. There is so much going on in this book that it is not the place to start for new readers to this series.

The book is written in the author's usual style. It has a number of short chapters switching from one sub-plot to another and regularly changing which character's point of view the reader is experiencing. This works really well and I had no trouble following the different storylines and I very much enjoyed seeing events from so many viewpoints. The author has a quirky writing style and uses a lot of abbreviations and unique words which I quite like and often find amusing.

The reason why I didn't enjoy this book as much as I have its predecessors is that I found that there was no dramatic tension and no real climax. The story of Blay and Qhuinn does run throughout the book and come to a suitable ending but as the reader has known for quite a long time that these two are made for each other this doesn't really create any tension - in fact, to be truthful, I became a little weary of the two of them as their reasons for not being together were rehearsed over and over again in a series of arguments and misunderstandings. I didn't think that the author was adding anything new to this story which she hadn't said before in previous novels and I did think that the relationship appeared to be all about lust and sex and very little about love and romance (the sex scenes are quite graphic so this book is not suitable for the Young Adult readership).

Although there are lots of other sub-plots in this book none of them came to a conclusion. Every one of them ends in some sort of a situation which needs resolution but none of them actually came to an ending. I enjoyed the sub-plots - I liked Layla as she gained some backbone, I enjoyed being introduced to Sola who shows signs of being a major character in a future installment, I was interested in Xcor and his need to be in charge, and I was delighted to learn more about the Shadows and why the brothers seem to be in exile among the vampires - but I really, really wished that there had been some dramatic climax or resolution to some other aspect of the book as well as the central love story.

This novel moves a lot of the overall story themes along but I found it sadly unsatisfying in itself. The central love story wasn't enough for me and I wanted more excitement, drama and tension among the other characters and sub-plot. This wasn't a bad book at all but in comparison with some of the others I thought that it lost central focus and was less exciting to read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A MUST READ FOR ALL FANTASY FANS BLACK DAGGER FANS ESPECIALY, 30 Jun. 2013
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I have been waiting for this book for so long and I am not unhappy, lover at last is more like the first five or six or J.R. WARD'S books and then they felt as though she had given them to a different author to do along side her they lost a lot of their description of events and felt as though she had lost some of her interest in the characters. The first five/six books were so full of life and eroticism then they felt like a labour not a love, but LOVER AT LAST is just like the first books and I felt as though I was right there with Qhuinn and Blay and I have not been able to put lover at last down I have been reading it at EVERY opportunity, from the very first page, having said all that I don't think it's a book you could read on its own if you have not tread the other Black dagger brotherhood books there is quite a bit that would not make a lot of sense BUT if you have read the other's or even some of the others then it is a MUST READ. I cannot wait for the next book to come out now because all the books up to now have been about finding their mates so what is going to happen in THE KING!!!
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31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars This is just bad writing, 29 April 2013
I've been reading BDB for a while, ever since my friend convinced me to pick up the first one, and even though I cringed half the way through the very first book, I actually enjoyed it... up until the last few installments.

My first gripe began with Lover Enshrined, which was Phury's book. Ward started to lose the plot then and it's fallen even further from grace now. One of the problems I've always had with her writing is her total lack of conviction. I understand these books are fluff and not really meant to be taken seriously, but Ward can't even take herself seriously in her writing. Characters are appointed tasks and then change them later. Characters act a certain way in one book and a totally different way in the next. She uses the most over-used plot devices when convenient and then suddenly drops them to make way for another plot that doesn't make any sense.

Like Layla getting pregnant, only to lose the baby at the very beginning of the next book; why? What possible way did this drive the plot forward or develop any of the characters? To let Layla grow a backbone in Havers' clinic? Did she really have to get pregnant for that? That whole scene was so monumentally uncomfortable and ridiculous. Layla's character didn't make any sense in that entire scenario. One minute she's struggling to walk upright because her blood pressure is so low, the next she's running around the clinic, barking orders all fire and brimstone. She's having a miscarriage, and suddenly she's up and spry like the world is her oyster. Bloody hell.

Why even bother to write the whole scene in Lover Reborn where she goes through her needing? Why even bother writing about her pregnancy? It added nothing, absolutely nothing to the story, and I have the funniest feeling this ever so convenient point was to test the water, to see how her fan-base would react. They reacted badly, thus no baby for Layla.

I also don't understand why Qhuinn was added to the BDB; this goes against the lore that Ward has created. Qhuinn was bound, by their laws, to be John's ahstrux nohtrum; this meant that he had to be by John's side (as reiterated by Ward) 24/7 and yet, conveniently so, they didn't have to be stuck at the hip in the mansion (something that was only clarified in this book), presumably so they could go off an bone their respective partners in between the plot. And yet, the law states that Qhuinn can only be a certain amount of feet from John at all times, yet when they were out in the field fighting lessers, suddenly Qhuinn flies an old plane in order to save Zadist's life, taking him miles from John (who, by the way, is in the middle of a battle, clearly in danger, with his bodyguard off playing the hero).

It just smacked of Ward trying to turn Qhuinn into some sort of hero, when in reality he's just an idiot with no real sense of priorities. Surely, by their laws, by refusing to stay with his charge (who, I reiterate is in the middle of a battle) he should be put to death, as Wrath suggested when he was appointed the role? Wasn't that the point of appointing him to John? That if he even dared to leave his post, he'd be beheaded under the chain around his neck? Where did that plot disappear to?

So let's look at the time-line just to emphasize how convenient everything is. Qhuinn's family are out to beat him; Wrath saves him by appointing him to be John's ahstrux nohtrum; this plot wavers a little through John's book but still keeps up the pace; then Qhuinn decides to crash a car he loves because it was stolen by two humans by flinging himself onto the bonnet, it never explains why this is a good idea and he also endangers himself in John's presence, leaving John open to an attack; then in order to 'save Zadist's life' (who is arguably, conveniently the most popular character) he actually tells the most powerful member of the BDB (Rhage) to save himself the trouble, figures out from what he learned by watching TV how to fly an aircraft *excuse me while I facepalm so hard it's audible in alternate dimensions*, and nearly crashes it into the mansion... And instead of punishing him severely for leaving his post, for putting John in danger, for putting Zadist in danger, the King treats him like a hero.

None of this makes any sense and Ward happily abandons her own lore in search of a plot that doesn't even exist anymore. What is the plot and where is it even going? Building an army in order to fight a common enemy of their race? How has that gotten better/worse since the very first book?

I've also noticed a slightly off-putting tone to her recent work, ever since Lover Enshrined. Recently, Ward's work has had this angry, cynical view of everything from how she writes the human world to how the characters view themselves, and it's more than a little off-putting. I understand that she's attempting to write characters with flaws and depth but there is a big difference between a character with depth than one with a purposefully horrible life to make the reader feel sorry for them. There is no 'quick fix' to a big problem, with finding a partner and having sex with them, just as Phury and Tohrment and now Qhuinn and Blay; they spend all their time moping about how horribly tortured they are and suddenly sex makes everything better. Her recent love scenes have had a forced, almost angry tone and her colloquial style of writing is getting even worse. At what point does shorting down the word 'binoculars' to 'binocs' seem colloquial? Ridiculous.

This is not good storytelling, this is turning into a mess and Ward can't even keep a handle on her own lore that she has written. She's not standing by her convictions and purposefully ignoring rules she has laid out from the first book for the sake of convenience. The ending is just as rushed and feeble and leaves a sense of total dissatisfaction as Lover Reborn did, and her writing style has gotten so skewed just to sound more 'authentic' when really it just screams that she's caring a little less at every iteration.

I don't know if I'll pick up the next book, the poor quality of Lover At Last has seriously put me off. Next time, I'll wait for the reviews before shelling out cash.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars disappointment, 2 April 2013
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Have been a great fan of Ward for a long time and was awaiting the story of B and Q. But for me, to use Ward's words, "this sucks"! This book is very disappointing and boring. It took me almost a week finishing. I couldn't be bothered with it for very long. Maybe it's because I'm European, but to me the language and vernacular used is degenerating more and more (especially in her last couple of books). There is an increase of slang and cursing. I know we are dealing with macho men, but there is also something as overkill. The book becomes tiresome reading. I've lived a couple of years in the US and I know what Ward is saying, but still... Not very international or interncontinental, but maybe that was never the intent.
As to the story: I do not know; there are a lot of new stories in the make, but the story about Q and B does not have a lot of body, except for the many described sex acts, which to me were not beautiful, but simply gay porn. There's nothing left to the imagination or left for stimulation of the senses. To me the acts were hardcore, while I believe there can be beautiful descriptions of the love act between two men.
Overall I believe there is just too much evolvement around sex in the book and not much on the actions in reference to purpose and duty of the Band of Brothers or the Brotherhood or their characters.
Where is John in the whole story? He was Blay's and Qhuin's best friend for many years. No mention of him anymore since the beginning when Qhuin lost his Hummer.
Qhuin's induction to the Brotherhood should have been a major event. It hardly gets 3 pages and afterwards? Nothing!
As good as no mention of the Omega or the Scribe Virgin. No activities whatsoever. What about the 50 inductees, Qhuin's brother, the Shadows, Marisol and Assail?
I really think the book could have been more thought through, with not so many left untouched and/or hanging.
Personally, Ward's best books about the Brotherhood were Zsadist, Vishous and Butch.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A bit of a let down but still good to have the Brotherhood back!, 4 April 2013
We waited so long for the next instalment of the BDB and it was OK but not as great as the others.

The synopsis reads that it's Qhuinn and Blay's story but there are so many other sub-plots going on which took the emphasis away from Qhuay and I feel they were somewhat let down.

As there is such a history between them there could have been more intense relationship talk rather than the hardcore sex. I would have liked to have read about them making love rather than snatched moments of hardcore! They hid important things from each other for almost the entire book. There were so few pages left to read I wondered if they ever would get together. The end line is 'lived happily ever after' which kind of took me back to when I was six and I feel was a bit of a cop out.

A really important part of the book being Qhuinn's induction to the Brotherhood was not given enough emphasis in my opinion. And his reaction afterwards was disappointing.

I noticed quite a lot of typos and Ward's over use of the expression "What do you know" really began to irritate me. For the amount of time we waited for it, you would think it could have been proof read a thousand times over!

Negatives aside, it was great to be back in the Brotherhood mansion and because there were so many other sub-plots, the door has been left open for many more books in the series. I would recommend re-reading the others in the series to get back into the BDB bubble that I spent so many months in.
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4.0 out of 5 stars I love Qhuinn & Blay, 21 April 2014
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This review is from: Lover at Last: Number 11 in series (Black Dagger Brotherhood Series) (Kindle Edition)
I love the Black Dagger Brotherhood series and think the Warden is something of an evil-genius. I had somehow managed to miss reviewing Lover at Last from my BDB reread-a-thon last year and thought it was about time to rectify this! The BDB books are very much adult and are not for those who don't like books with violence and sexy times, because these vampires have it in spades!

Lover at Last is Qhuinn and Blay's love story (if guys in love is not your thing then this ones not for you) but the book also introduces new characters and catches up with our old fav's. In a nutshell: Qhuinn is helping Layla after her needing and is still in denial/suffering about Blay. Blay thinks Qhuinn will never want him. Assail is increasing his criminal activities whilst meeting a new lady. Trez has some major problems and the B.o.B are still trying to overthrow Wrath, but Xcor is now more focused on stalking Layla. The lessers have been regrouping and some surprising discoveries are made about their plans.

What I love about the BDB books (other than the hot vamps and smut) is the overwhelming sense of family. These big tough guys all support each other and Qhuinn finally finds a home.

I've always really liked Qhuinn and didn't mind Blay, but by the end of Lover at Last I loved Blay (although not as much as Z or V). I never realised guys could be so stubborn! The naughty scenes here were very believable and it was kinda sad to see them both suffering. The way Layla handles everything really endeared her to me and I saw her as more than a Chosen. Havers makes an appearance and seriously, what a douche!!

I would have liked more of the story to focus on Blay and Qhuinn (being as it was their book), but I liked the parts with the Shadow twins iAm and Trez. Ward also sets the scene for a big smack down between the Glymera, Band of Bastards and Wrath in the next book. With Beth getting broody and Wrath very anti getting her preggers I sense some stressful scenes coming up in The King!

I enjoyed Lover at Last, but perhaps not as much as I have done for some of the other BDB books. Roll on book 12!!

4 Stars in my Sky!

My fav non-spoilery quotes:

“I think that's Justin Bieber." Standing in front of a line up of Lay's potato chips, Qhuinn looked overhead to the speaker inset into the ceiling tiles. "Yup, I'm right, and I hate that I know that." Next to him John Matthew signed, How do you know? "The little s*** is everywhere. I swear, that kid is proof the Antichrist is coming."
"Will you get off me!" "But I'm giving you CPR-" "I will die before kissing you, Hollywood." Z tried to sit up, his breathing heavy. "Don't even think about it."
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good but could have been so much better, 5 Jun. 2013
By 
Bamba "Bamba" (Midlands, England) - See all my reviews
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**SPOILERS ** SPOILERS ** SPOILERS ** SPOILERS ** SPOILERS ** SPOILERS ** SPOILERS ** SPOILERS **

I actually really love The Black Dagger Brotherhood books, they are indeed a fun, guilty pleasure. I have been really looking forward to Qhuinn & Blay's story - in fact hoping the last few books were going to be their story - here it is at last & is it everything we were expecting? Not at all.

This is in no way a terrible book, the Qhuinn & Blay story is interesting & does still work, but were their major plot holes? Yes.

There were two main problems with this book:

1) Where was John for a majority of the book? Since Qhuinn & Blay were such big parts of John's life/story it made no sense whatsoever that he was barely mentioned in his best friends story. He did not even get as much as a mention as other members of BDB. It especially annoyed me at times when Qhuinn was thinking such thoughts that he had no one to talk to as Blay was not speaking to him. It was as if the friendship between the trio never existed. It was completely ignored, which was strange as having a confidant for either/or Blay/Qhuinn would have made perfect sense & been an ideal plot device.

2) All the other storylines. I will be honest, I do need to re-read this book (which I will do shortly) as had no interest in any of the other storylines except what was happening with Qhuinn/Blay/Layla. We have waited for so long for this story, to have it put into a small part of the book while the rest of the book is dedicated to other storylines was such a shame. I started to read them, then realised that I was not very interested in these other wandering threads, that I skipped them. I will read them but we have waited long enough for this pairing, was not reading chapters & chapters of new people/issues. I was dismayed when I got to the end & realised how little Qhuinn/Blay/Layla were in this book & how rushed the ending was. Could have spent so much more time exploring all the drama/issues that has been hinted at for so long!

There were other plot holes that made no sense to me such as Qhuinn leaving John to save Zsadist when he has never been allowed to leave his side before (it was suddenly forgotten).

However, there were a lot I did like - Qhuinn's induction into the BDB, which although does appear strange that he was inducted before John, was quite a nice touch that he belongs.

I also found the whole exchange between Blay & his parents amazing & great writing. Really moving. Also interactions with Layla & Blay were lovely.

Did think Blay's character changed drastically in this book compared to how kind he has always been, but somehow it worked well & his interactions with Layla showed this off very well.

Overall I did like this book (as Blay & Qhuinn have been 2 of my favourite characters for so long, behind Zsadist of course!) & will always re-read it as part of the series, however it is a shame that it could have been so much more/so fantastic if past friendships had been remembered properly & others storylines missed out to focus on the main story. The Layla/Saxton/Qhuinn/Blay square would have been enough to have carried a book alone, we could have had snippets of other members of the BDB & everything else should have been left for a later book. This really did not need to be squashed into such a small section of the book & it would have been so much better had we got the entire book dedicated to them, which we had been anticipating for so long!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best, 1 May 2013
By 
N. Liddell "NJL" (UK) - See all my reviews
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Like so many long term fans of this series I was expecting something exceptional with this book, we have been given tantalizing pieces of Blay & Quinn's relationship for so long that we have all fallen in love with them and wanted something explosive - unfortunately the climax was a total disappointment(no pun intended!)

In the past I have been able to read the brothers books in one sitting, totally consumed, but not with this book.

There are just too many sub stories, I expect that when we get another few books in to the series that things introduced in this book will become clearer but at a rate of one book per year (compared to the original pace of two per year) we have years to wait and I am not as hungry for these books as I have been for the past few - the sub stories introduced just haven't captured me, in fact they have diluted the series a little too much for me.

Also there are so many typos in the kindle addition that it started to drive me crazy and at times it really slowed my reading momentum down as I had to reread lines to make sense of it - my grammar and spelling are not the best so if I am noticing errors then it's really not good.

I thought the sex scenes were nicely handled, as a heterosexual they didn't make me feel uncomfortable when I was reading them and they felt right within the context of the story and the characters involved. I would love to know if it hit the right cord with any homosexual / bisexual readers - it isn't something I can comment on, I didn't get hot under the collar when reading (which I usually do with this series) and I have put this down to gay sex not being my thing.

I kind of feel the last few chapters of the booked covered way too much storyline and rushed through some of the most emotional and pivotal points of Blay and Quinn's journey - it reminds me very much of how V's story was rushed through to its conclusion. It's such a shame, they deserved more time! And I didn't like how it finished, the latest sentence was so out of touch with the brotherhoods world!

Having said all that I still love the series and will wait patiently for the next instalment and hope it is better than this one.
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